Spycies review – not so perfect spies

Spycies review – not so perfect spies

Naive animation and a clumsy ecological message mar this feature starring a spy cat and hacker rat

This simplistic animated feature produced by the Chinese streaming platform iQiyi centres on top-tier spy cat Vladimir (Kirk Thornton), who finds himself demoted to security detail and forced into a job share with a hacker rat named Hector (Dino Andrade). Hector is obsessed with a TV soap starring a glamorous, leggy bee. Radioactive material is stolen from their lab and so they must retrieve it by breaking into a hospital.
Teahouses and fire-breathing dragons hint at this Chinese-French co-production’s setting, but the action lacks a sense of place. There’s a dynamic, human edge to the skilfully drawn characters that is sadly missing from the inanimate dialogue, “humour” and voice work. The film’s well-meaning message about conserving endangered species is clumsily deployed too. “Our mission is to make sure all races survive,” assures an altruistic brown bear, fundamentally confusing race with species.

Watch a trailer for Spycies

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