Scott ‘Kid Cudi’ Mescudi’s animated film, complementing his album of the same name, is the story of two young black artists navigating life in the big city.
Set in Manhattan, Entergalactic is centered around the life of Jabari (voiced by Kid Cudi), a street artist on the verge of making it big. Things get a little complicated when he meets his next-door neighbour Meadow (voiced by Jessica Williams), a photographer who is within arm’s length of finding her space in the galleries of New York, at a noisy house party. The neighbours soon fall for each other as the skyscapes of New York make for a great background.
The voice actors fit their animations and emote their thoughts and feelings with precision.
On the surface, Entergalactic is yet another rom-com set in the big city following two young starry-eyed artists with passion brimming for their craft. But it is the kinetic music and the Spider-Verse-esque animation that breathe life into the streets of Manhattan and make Jabari and Meadow relatable. The film is at its best when the transient hyperbolic sequences of the character’s emotions play out on the screen; from cycling in space with your crush to being chased by cartoons that symbolise your deepest fears.
Ty Dolla $ign as Ky, Jabari’s friend, nails his comedic timing and his anecdotes create a couple of laugh-out-loud moments. The focus and importance given to friendships while navigating an animated love story is also quite delightful.
While the story does not give the audience anything new to hold on to, it is the soundtrack and animations that jump in to save the day and keep us hooked. There are fleeting instances throughout the film where race and power dynamics at the quintessential progressive American workplace and high-brow socialite parties are investigated.
The ninety-minute film, which was initially meant to be a series, does not hit all the high notes unlike its album leaving the audience wondering if the creators did away with the depth of the characters in the process of reducing its runtime.
The style of the movie (as intended) matches Kid Cudi’s 10th studio album, making for a great companion piece, but leaves us wanting more of Jabari and Meadow. Still, Kid Cudi’s ode to the dreamers in the boroughs of New York City is worth a watch.
Entergalactic is currently streaming on Netflix