Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The LEGO Movie

I still haven't forgotten about my 2014 movie preview! I promise! Besides you're all set until March anyways so what are you complaining about?!

Anywho...this is one of those rare opportunities where I got to see a movie within a week of it's theatrical release, and I couldn't WAIT to review it!

The LEGO Movie
(PG) 2013

Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Alison Brie, Charlie Day, Liam Neeson, Will Ferrell, Morgan Freeman, Will Forte, Nick Offerman, Shaquile O'Neal, Billy Dee Williams, Cobie Smulders, and on and on AND ON!!

The Plot:
Based on the popular children's toy, the movie is set in a LEGO world and follows the story of Emmett (Chris Pratt, Parks & Recreation), a regular guy who follows the instructions. He soon finds himself being looked up to as "The Special", the one who will save the LEGO world from evil Lord Business (Will Ferrell, Anchorman). With the help of his fellow master builders (including, but not limited to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, NBA all-stars, Batman, Superman, and several surprise guests I don't want to spoil here).

The Good:
Where do I begin? No seriously, this movie is fantastic! Most animated movies in this day and age throw in a few subtle jokes for the adults, or try to fill in the gaps with needless potty humor and fart jokes. This movie had me in stitches even during its most "serious" moments, and I can say the same for every single other adult in the theater (which was just about everyone).

The movie is animated very well. It's made using a mix of stop-motion and computer animation, resulting in some spectacular shots, and some hilarious moments. The water in the movie was probably the most visually incredible, if not a bit trippy. Anyone who has interest in the animation aspect of movies will greatly enjoy seeing how the obviously plastic figures move and interact.

The voice acting is also superb, and even the voice actors that I can't stand (coughJONAH HILLcough) had some great lines that were very well performed. The star-studded cast kept on coming until the very end, and even led to some unsuspected and wonderful twists in the last half hour.

Usually I'm not one in support of the "moral of the story" of movies like this. But the "anyone can be creative" and "you're all special" messages were so subtle, yet just obvious enough that it ties the whole movie together.

The Bad:
Honestly, while the movie comes in at a respectable 1 hour and 40 minutes, it felt a bit rushed at times. The very beginning of the movie shoots through the introduction of the world, and came close to feeling overwhelming.

My only other complaint (and I'm REALLY reaching for complaints) is that the LEGO universe is so expansive nowadays that I felt that there were some missed opportunities. Some of the most subtle references had me laughing the most, but there were so many LEGO sets that could have been included, but I feel like they weren't just because of the companies in charge of making the movie. (e.g. Warner Brothers had a hand, which means they'd include a ton of DC Comics characters, but without the rights to any Marvel Comics characters, even though there are plenty of Marvel LEGO sets).

But again, I'm trying hard to find things to complain about, and if that's the best I can muster, that should tell you something! Besides, there's always room in the sequel, eh?

10 awesome overpriced LEGO sets out of 10

As the movie's song says, "Everything Is Awesome."

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