BOY AND THE WORLD has a vibrant, colorful, flowing, and distinctly Brazilian flavor. The boy’s journey is very rhythmic even when it leaps all over time and space, through geography and memory. The art style is refreshing compared to Pixar CGI and the uniformly bug-eyed figures of many anime.
However, the delicate colored-pencil art, rather minimalist backgrounds, and airy plot were too flimsy for my liking. I have never liked animated stick figures. If the figures and backgrounds were more bold and solid like those by the Brazilian street artists Os Gemeos, the visuals of this film would have held up stronger. Indeed, when urban environments, mixed media, and more linear perspective were introduced, this film actually became more aesthetically pleasing and interesting, which actually runs counter to the environmentalist message of this movie. I am not actually sure whether children would enjoy this movie; adults would probably like it more for its manufactured, abstract sense of wonder.