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Set in a bustling bird city on the edge of the majestic Victoria Falls, "Zambezia" is the story of Kai, a naïve, but high-spirited young falcon who travels to the bird city of "Zambezia", ... See full summary »

Director:

Wayne Thornley

Writers:

Raffaella Delle Donne (screenplay by), Anthony Silverston (screenplay by) | 6 more credits »
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3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Leonard Nimoy ... Sekhuru (voice)
Jeremy Suarez ... Kai (voice)
Abigail Breslin ... Zoe (voice)
Jeff Goldblum ... Ajax (voice)
Samuel L. Jackson ... Tendai (voice)
Jenifer Lewis ... Gogo (voice)
Jim Cummings ... Budzo / Marabous (voice)
Jamal Mixon ... Ezee (voice)
Richard E. Grant ... Cecil (voice)
David Shaughnessy ... Morton (voice)
Noureen DeWulf ... Pavi (voice)
Tania Gunadi ... Tini (voice)
Deep Roy ... Mushana (voice)
Phil LaMarr ... Announcer Bird (voice)
Kelly Stables ... Gossip Bird #1 (voice)
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Storyline

Set in a bustling bird city on the edge of the majestic Victoria Falls, "Zambezia" is the story of Kai, a naïve, but high-spirited young falcon who travels to the bird city of "Zambezia", where he discovers the truth about his origins and, in defending the city, learns how to be part of a community. Written by Triggerfish Animation Studios

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They'll have to wing it... in this bird city! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

South Africa

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 December 2012 (South Africa) See more »

Also Known As:

Zambezija See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Zoe is a Black-shouldered Kite. See more »

Quotes

Morton: Gathering, gathering! Nigel, that includes you.
[Nigel looks up, disturbed]
Morton: Beaks closed, ears open!
Cecil: Friends, wanderers, marabous! When those Zambezians flocked together, they created an inside!
Morton: [Supporting every word] Inside!
Cecil: And an outside!
Morton: Outside!
Cecil: And if you hadn't noticed, we are on the outside.
Morton: Here we are!
Cecil: The Cold, lonely, Desolate, outside.
[...]
See more »

Soundtracks

Mushana's and Spring Celebration Music
Written by Didas Bonazebi and Ludovic Mampuya
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A family-friendly surprise from South-Africa with the ambition to follow in "The Lion King's" footsteps
29 January 2017 | by moritzmeyerautorSee all my reviews

You can tell if a kids movie just hit the mark, if the young viewers shout "We want to watch this again", immediately after the end credits start to roll. "Zambezia" is a very sweet, well crafted and engagingly told south-African animation, that works very well with its target audience, tells an ambitious story; and ends up being hold back by its budget restrictions.

Director Wayne Thornley aims high with his home grown south-African story of the young hawk Kay, who lives alone with his father at the top of a gorge of the Zambezi in an otherwise deserted landscape. When Kay abandons his home to live in the bird's big city of "Zambezia", where he learns the truth about his origins and has to find his own strength, parallels to "The Lion King", "Finding Nemo" and other genre classics become obvious.

To my surprise, Zambezia fits surprisingly well into the shoes of its predecessors. The animal characters are developed very nicely and with attention to detail. Clearly the creators of this movie know their subjects very well. I always like, when animal characters like these are still rooted in their natural behavior, something "The Jungle Book" or the mentioned "Lion King" do all so well (while annoying movies like the "Madagascar"-franchise don't seem to get this right).

The south-African landscapes are stunning. It is a joy to follow Kay and all the other birds of prey as they race over rivers and waterfalls, through gorges of stone and wood at breakneck pace. These visual treats are accompanied by a simple story with an important message ("Stronger together"), both transported in a very engaging way for the young viewers. The movie is funny and exciting and the main villain is very creepy, so there is a lot to enjoy for the kids.

So, that Zambezia ultimately cannot quite reach the heights of its paragons, has nothing to do with bad story telling or movie making. The creators clearly had a vision of what they wanted to accomplish and it only seems, they have been held back by limited resources. They are some plot points, that would have deserved greater development, such as the relationship between Kay and the female kite "Zoe". Though the story paces along at falcon speed, I would have loved to see some story arcs told with more patience. But these are adult complaints, that surely don't diminish the fun of younger viewers.

Zambezia is a certainly underrated, definitely ambitious and well crafted piece of animation, that deserves to be given greater attention. If you need to kill an afternoon at home with your kids, this one is well worth the time.


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