Tuesday, July 22, 2014

On The Lego Movie

No one who reads this blog (all four of you) know I'm no stranger to ripping a movie a new one. But I actually feel bad when I say I didn't really like The Lego Movie. One, until I sat down to write this review ... I did like it. I laughed most of the way through it. It had entertaining visuals, a clever story, recognizable figures, engaging jokes ... and, ... honestly the characters left no lasting impact on me. That was the main thing. I only saw the movie a week ago, and seeing as I can still name the episode order of Season 1 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer when I haven't watched that show since junior high? Not remembering something is a big deal. I think that's when I realized there really wasn't anything to remember. 

Most Accurate Review

"Boasting beautiful animation, a charming voice cast, laugh-a-minute gags, and a surprisingly thoughtful story, The Lego Movie is colorful fun for all ages." -- Rotten Tomatoes website's consensus

I still really enjoyed the movie. I did. So I want to give credit where due. I had very low expectations when the movie was first announced. The fact they could pull of such a concept as well as they did is astounding. I wouldn't have wanted to be the screenwriter on that project. 

Most Idiotic Review

"It's just too bad that a movie that encourages you to think for yourself doesn't follow its own advice." -- Alonso Duralde (The Wrap)

Of any complaints I can lobby against the film, the Lego Movie really did keep me guessing. On several occasions I really had no idea where the movie was going. I can't say that often. And while I don't know if all the twists really worked, that might just be personal preference on my part. 

What I Say

Alright, the plot is pretty simple. The badguy (played delightfully by Will Ferrel (who I'm not always such a big fan of), wants the world picturesque and, 'by the book,' and his perfect world is threatened by the Master Builders, a group of creative rebels who can build 'outside the box'. The films soars here with a fun, clever, and fastpaced script about the adventures of a normal lego-piece (Played by Chris Pratt) becoming a hero who is unique and special. It's definitely a post-Don Bluth kids movie, alas. It's so kid friendly that, while there's nothing untoward for kids, it really doesn't challenge them in any way.

I felt torn about this one. One, I found the characters less to be characters and more expositories for clever joke dispensement. Two, I found the characters harkening back to classic archytipes. I think my ultimate opinion is that nothing in this movie will challenge kids to new ways of thinking, but it will lay some of the groundwork explored more fully in other stories. While there was nothing done wrong with the Lego Movie, it didn't strike me as doing anything new or risky in any way. They were using a pre-established model to tell a pre-established story.

The film shines in its visuals, which are very clever. There's a lot going on, which is appropriate, but never feels like it's overpowering the story, which is so fast paced it waits for no one, not character or visual, which makes it fun and enjoyable, doesn't leave a lot of meat on the bone for a close encounter as my professors like to say (unless you're just enjoying the background visuals, which are a lot of fun).

Ultimately I have less to say about the Lego Movie. I thought it was very well done, but it didn't leave much of an impact on me. I'm glad I saw it. I'm glad I didn't pay to see it in theaters.

~ Godzello

P.S. Batman was friggin awesome. 

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