The Biggest Animated Movie On Netflix Right Now Is Remarkably Similar To A Pixar Film From 2 Years Ago
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The Biggest Animated Movie On Netflix Right Now Is Remarkably Similar To A Pixar Film From 2 Years Ago


  • Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken quickly climbed Netflix’s Top 10, but it closely resembles Pixar movies Turning Red and Luca.
  • DreamWorks’ movie explores generational trauma and mother-daughter relationships, but loses focus on emotional depth in favor of a predictable plot.
  • Similar to Turning Red and Luca, Ruby Gillman features creatures adapting to human life, but with an unoriginal plot and a predictable villain.



Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken quickly climbed up to Netflix’s Top 10 and held the #1 spot for days, but upon closer inspection, this movie is remarkably similar to a Pixar movie released two years ago. Pixar is a powerhouse in the world of animation, and as such, it’s home to many of the most popular and successful animated movies in film history. Pixar’s success has led to a lot of competition, and one of its biggest competitors over the years has been DreamWorks Animation.

The studio rose to fame with the Shrek franchise and has maintained its popularity with movies and franchises like Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, and Trolls. DreamWorks released two movies in 2023: Trolls Band Together and Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken, with the former performing well at the box office and the latter being a commercial flop. However, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken got a new chance after its arrival on Netflix in February 2024, quickly becoming the most-watched movie on the platform, but this wider attention has also brought out its flaws, such as how similar it is to a recent Pixar movie.


10 Biggest Reasons DreamWorks’ New Animated Movie Bombed So Badly At The Box Office

DreamWorks Animation’s newest movie, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken, was a devastating box office bomb, and here are all the reasons why.

Turning Red Is What Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken Tried (& Failed) To Be

Turning Red

Turning Red

Domee Shi

Release Date
March 11, 2022

Maitreyi Ramakrishnan , Jordan Fisher , wai ching ho , Mia Tagano , Orion Lee , Lillian Lim , Sandra Oh , Hyein Park , Rosalie Chiang , Ava Morse

100 minutes

Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken sets up a story of generational trauma & mother-daughter relationship but quickly forgets about it.

In 2022, Pixar released Turning Red, which followed the steps of the three movies before it and was directly released on Disney+. While this wasn’t beneficial to its box office stats, Turning Red was a critical success. Directed by Domee Shi, Turning Red takes the audience back to 2002 in Toronto, Ontario, to meet Mei Lee (Rosalie Chiang), a 13-year-old Chinese-Canadian student who lives with her father and her overprotective and strict mother, Ming (Sandra Oh). One day, Mei discovers that she transforms into a giant red panda when she experiences any strong emotion as a result of a family curse.

Luckily for Mei, she counts on the support of her best friends Miriam, Priya, and Abby, who help her embrace her red panda. Mei’s journey is more complex than that, as she also has to deal with generational trauma and the relationship with her mother, making Turning Red a layered and emotional story. Now, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken follows the title character (Lana Condor), who lives among humans with her parents and has been prohibited by her mother from going into the ocean. When she breaks this rule, Ruby discovers that she’s the direct descendant of kraken royalty, and her true form is that of a giant kraken.

Ruby, like Mei, makes a huge family discovery that directly impacts her physically and emotionally, and they both had tense relationships with their mothers, who were too overprotective. Ruby’s friends are even reminiscent of Mei’s friends, but they don’t take an active role in Ruby’s journey. Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken sets up a story of generational trauma and mother-daughter relationship in its first act but quickly forgets about it to focus on a predictable story with an underwhelming villain and conflict between krakens and mermaids.

Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken Is Also Similar To Pixar’s Luca

Jacob Tremblay as Luca Paguro transforms into a sea creature in Luca.


Enrico Casarosa

Release Date
June 18, 2021

1h 35m

Turning Red is not the only Pixar movie that Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken is similar to. Before Turning Red, Pixar released Luca, set on the Italian Riviera in 1959. Luca is the story of the title character (Jacob Tremblay), a young sea monster boy who takes human form while on land but goes back to his monster form when coming into contact with water. With his friend Alberto (Jack Dylan Grazer), Luca explores the town of Portorosso, getting to experience life as a human despite his parents forbidding him from ever approaching the surface.

Ruby Gilman, Teenage Kraken and Luca are similar in terms of their main characters being sea creatures looking to live a normal life among humans, and with their parents keeping them away from the ocean and land, respectively. However, and just as mentioned above, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken quickly left its deepest and most emotional threads aside in favor of an unoriginal and predictable plot with an equally predictable villain, while Luca, like Turning Red, fully focused on the personal journeys of its characters.

Ruby-Gillman-Teenage-Kraken Movie Poster

Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken

DreamWorks Animation presents Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken, an animated action-adventure film that follows high-schooler Ruby Gillman as she tries to fit in at Oceanside High. When Ruby finally discovers that she’s directly descended from the protectors of the seas, the Krakens, she’ll have to dig deep to protect her school and the oceans themselves from the popular but dangerous mermaid, Chelsea.

Release Date
June 30, 2023

Lana Condor , Toni Collette , Annie Murphy , Sam Richardson , Liza Koshy , Will Forte , Colman Domingo , Jaboukie Young-White

90 Minutes

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