Friday, September 26, 2014

The Lego Movie: A movie that should have sucked, but was actually pretty awesome

Okay, so I'll be honest,  when I first heard they were making a Lego movie I groaned. Because come on, it sounded like it would be a stupid kiddy movie that's soul purpose was only to sell more Legos at Toys R Us. Most films like this (Transformers, Battleship, etc.) are just god awful. Also, I've grown up playing with not only Lego toys, but also other Lego merchandise- such as their popular video games. I can't tell you how much fun I had playing the Lego Stars Wars video game as a kid, but the thought that the cut scenes from that video game were to be the type of content about to be featured in a Hollywood film was horrifying to me. (I mean in the earlier games the Legos don't even speak english, they just sort of babble like in the Sims, it's weird and just awful.)

With all that said, I don't think it was completely unfair of me to have my doubts about this film. So, when the film came out and started getting extremely positive reviews, I couldn't believe it.

So obviously, I had to go check this out for myself and I am so glad I did! Because not only is the Lego Movie good, it's awesome! The film is brilliantly and hilariously written, with beautiful animation, charming voice acting, and a surprising amount of heart. 

One of my favorite things about the film is how self-referential it is. It knows that it's a movie about Legos and instead of making the audience try to forget that, which would be impossible, it uses this fact to it's advantage. The film jokes not only about the nature of the toys and properties themselves, but also the way it's users/audience relate to them. 

For example, this was one of my favorite jokes in the film:

Because, come on, who didn't have that one friend who would only use certain colors or pieces when playing with Legos? (The fact that they use Batman and his darkness obsession, for this joke just makes it better.) It is little touches like this that really make the film connect with the audience in a way that other film franchises with a similar basis (again: Transformers, Battleship, etc) have not. 

This film is kind of like Lego's mission statement. It actually makes you want to leave the theater and go buy Legos.  Which I guess is the point, but it's done so well and so cleverly that you don't even mind being marketed to for two hours. 

The Lego Movie is directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, who also directed another popular film you might have heard of...

Yeah, no wonder you liked the Lego Movie, huh? What's even better, Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill actually both have small speaking roles in the Lego Movie because of this.

 If you did not know that, you are welcome by the way.

As you can probably tell, Warner Brother's (who distributed the film) took full advantage of their rights to use DC comic book characters (Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, etc) in this film. Which is fine by me because then we get jokes like these-

But DC heroes weren't the only franchise characters to make an appearance in this film. The Lego Movie goes all out, bringing in characters from films such as Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. It adds to the atmosphere of magic and chaos that the film presents, because when else are you going to see Dumbledore and Gandalf in the same movie? It could only happen in the Lego Movie and the filmmakers took full advantage of this fact.

I could go on and on about how much fun the Lego Movie is, but if you've already seen it then you know what I'm talking about and if you haven't I don't want to spoil anymore for you! If you are one of those people who have yet to see this film, go rent it and watch it with a bunch of friends! You won't regret it!

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