The Inventor

Certificate: PG

Voices of: Stephen Fry, Daisy Ridley, Matt Berry, Marion Cotillard

Release date: 2024

2 out of 5


Leonardo da Vinci (Fry) is the subject of this animated biopic from Ratatouille screenwriter Jim Capobianco.

Beginning in Rome in 1516, the movie follows the inventor/artist/scientist/architect as he heads to France and the French court to continue his experiments and inventions in an attempt to understand the meaning of life.

If that all sounds a bit, well, deep for kids, it probably is (and we haven’t even mentioned the grave-robbing so Leo and his mates have fresh-ish corpses to experiment on), and the cute-looking movie falters when it tries too hard to be educational and forgets it needs to be entertaining to hold younger kids’ attentions.

There are some moments that will enchant – especially during some hand-drawn parts of the movie – and grown-ups will chortle at Matt Berry’s voicing of the pope, but ultimately there’s not enough plot, humour or drama to keep kids in their seats. Adults who appreciate stop-motion animation will find more to enjoy here, however.

Is The Inventor suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...

Younger children (under 8) may be upset by dead bodies being stolen from a graveyard, but it is comically played and only feet are seen on screen.

There are mild moments of peril.

There are references to death and the meaning of life which will probably go unnoticed (and not understood) by younger viewers.

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