Amazon Original in Review: “Troop Zero”


The Winonan’s film reporter rates “Birds of Prey” 3.5/5

Noah Mruz, Film Reviewer

Much like a comet in the atmosphere, the Amazon Original film Troop Zero shines beautifully, but burns out before making an impact on the viewer.

The film follows 13-year-old Christmas Flint in rural Georgia as she attempts to create a troop of Birdie Scouts to win a talent show that will send her name out in the stars on President Carter’s Golden Record. Staring Mckenna Grace, Viola Davis, Allison Janey and Jim Gaffigan, the film has a strong, heartwarming and comedic presence in a fairly basic plot.

Troop Zero’s performances are wonderful at their best, and fun at their worst. Each of the films four leads bring strong emotion and heart into every scene they are in. The best performance of the cast, however, goes to Mckenna Grace.

At just 13 years old, Grace does an incredible job of expressing her character’s passion for space, or as she calls it, “great unknown”.

Her emotion is truly felt and never feels forced, which is unfortunately the case for some of her co-stars in her age group. Even at these moments where their acting feels forced however, it’s hard not to laugh with them as they create chaos in every scene.

Actors Viola Davis and Allison Janey also showcase wonderful acting in their perspective roles, but it’s comedian Jim Gaffigan that truly steals the show amongst the adults in the film.

Gaffigan plays the father figure of the Flint family, a lawyer who loses cases constantly and is in debt, all while staying positive for the sake of his daughter, as he is now the only parental figure she has. When Grace and Gaffigan are onscreen together, it’s something magical.

The cast is largely to thank for the emotional roller coaster in the film, but it could not save the films fairly bareboned plot. The premise is fairly familiar to almost anyone; a group of misfits attempt to win the big talent show despite the odds being against them. The film takes twists and turns, but the conflict never seems to truly amount to anything.

Troubling moments are resolved quickly, causing almost all of them to never hold that much weight on the plot. Some character growth is shown at the end of the film, leaving it no time to be fully developed, and heartfelt moments seem to remain just that: moments.

Despite a barebones plot, the films cast truly makes Troop Zero a fun film to watch, which is why I rate it a 3.5 out of 5. Whether you’re a father, a kid, or someone who is preparing for the adult world, looking ahead as well as reminiscing on your childhood, the scenes that Gaffigan and Grace share are excellent at provoking emotion. As fun as the film is, it probably won’t inspire you to watch it more than once. If you have Amazon Prime, it is definitely worth watching with your membership if you don’t have anything to do this weekend.


*All opinions expressed are of the Winonan staff. They do not necessarily reflect those of the college, university, system, or student body.*