I will admit that I was really uncertain going into this if I was going to be able to give it a fair shake without it being tainted by the fact that it is essentially just My Little Pony fan fiction that got turned into a cartoon. It’s like trying to review Fifty Shades of Grey after learning it was just Twilight fan fiction except that that one was explicitly supposed to be masturbation fodder unlike Equestria Girls which is just incidentally that way because a lot of bronies are horribly broken. Anyway, I am going to try my damnedest to review this movie on its own merits.
Now, I will admit I’ve seen probably 4 or 5 episodes several years ago when it was first gaining popularity because I had heard it was supposed to be really good. I like Adventure Time and other cartoons that walk that line of being fun for kids and adults. That being said, I found it to be fairly inoffensive and cute without being anything special so I just sort of stopped caring after watching the first few. I only mention this because I’m sure I missed a great many references and show related things having only had a minor amount of exposure to the show. It is also an issue because the movie makes literally zero attempts to fill in someone watching it. It assumes anyone watching it is fully and intimately familiar with the plot of the show and I can’t exactly fault it for making that assumption.
The movie starts right off the bat with Twilight Sparkle showing up at a castle because she’s going to be a princess or something and we are just supposed to go with it. I knew the main characters so I was at least no entirely lost when they didn’t bother doing any sort of introduction. Twilight Sparkle is now apparently also a pegasus in addition to being a unicorn with no explanation given. She’s going to be crowned princess but then Sunset Shimmer steals the crown and escapes through a magic mirror that takes her to some human world where she has been living for however many years. Celestia says Twilight has to go get the crown back since it would be devastating to the other world if she had such power but she has to go alone because…fuck you, just go through the mirror. But Spike, her baby dragon friend, follows her and he gets to be a dog on the other side.
The human world is not earth so much as it is just the human version of the pony world. Everyone from one side has their counterpart in the other world. And they all go to high school together apparently. Except for that world’s Twilight Sparkle, conveniently. Oh and humans in this world still totally have names like Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash. Anyway, the movie from this point is a cross between the standard “fish out of water” with Twilight Sparkle trying to figure out what humans is and a by the book “running for homecoming queen” high school movie. Except for the end where Sunset turns into a literal demon and then they still are like “It’s cool, I know you tried to enslave all of us and take over Equestria but we can be friends because wooo friendship is magic.”
I know that it’s trying to teach a “everyone can be friends” message and that’s admirable and all but seriously. If someone goes mad with power and attempts to murder you and take over your country, the punishment shouldn’t be an apology and then we all get ice cream. Also, there are a couple things that end up being kind of weird. One is Twilight seeming to have a crush on a boy at the school. This is like going through a portal to an strange alien world where all your friends have turned into spiders but that spider over there makes webroom eyes at you and you get all blushy. Also, when she gets back she mentions hands, Rainbow Dash is all “what are hands” and that is literally immediately followed by Spike showing up and wiggling his hands.
I’ve already gone slightly long and mostly because I’ve tried to explain some things for people that don’t know My Little Pony so I can kind of see why they just said “fuck it” and jumped in without trying to explain anything. The movie, like the show, is inoffensive and has its heart in the right place message wise. The writing was way above the horrible fan-fic I was expecting. Even the random songs (because of course it’s a musical) weren’t entirely terrible. I give it a 2.5 out of 5.