The Lego Movie (2014) (PG)




















To some "The Lego Movie" could seem like a film length commercial that ends up with a unfortunate sentiment about selling more LEGOs; but the general consensus of both critics and audiences alike have united behind this movie—they all like it. For me, the film is me revisiting my childhood, expect that LEGOs in my days had to walk up hill in the snow both ways to school.
Beginning when a God-like figure named Vitruvius (voiced by God...uh, I mean Morgan Freeman) being dethroned and blinded by a villain obsessed with perfection, Lord Business (Will Ferrell). Stealing an incredibly powerful weapon, Lord Business is warned by Vitruvius about the prophesy of a Master-Builder. In the days of future there will arise a person of great potential who will find the Piece of Resistance which will nullify all the wrongs that Lord Business has committed. A Mater-Builder and a Piece of Resistance you say? Pshaw on that, Lord Business continues his nefarious plans and Vitruvius disappears for a little while.
Eight and a half years later we are introduced to an every-LEGO-man. Emmet (Christ Pratt) is fine living the way he does. He gets up in the morning at 7 and reads his instruction manual on how to be a happy citizen. After bathing and watching a little television, Emmet sees an advertisement for Taco Tuesday brought to life by President Business who bears an evil, uncanny resemblance to a lord that we have recently met.
The urban and bustling city that Emmet lives in is filled with fast-paced action and loads of pop-culture references. There are jabs at over-priced coffee, comments on pop music, and the usual desolation of the main character. While other LEGO people may have some variances in their character and their physical appearance, Emmet is just a nobody. His face is a blank slate, his actions are overwhelmingly airy and dry, and he has no real original ideas.
So we know how this is going to turn out. Emmet will have to believe in himself for him to save the day...perhaps I'm getting a little ahead of myself. In this regard, "The Lego Movie" has no terribly original moral that "Frozen" or "Wreck-It Ralph" didn't have.
Still, we move on.
At the end of the first day we observe Emmet, he tries to join in on the activity after work, but he gets ostracized by his fellow workers. Emmet works as a builder, someone who can play well with others, sing all day, and precisely assemble skyscrapers.
Getting sidetracked for a moment, Emmet gets captivated by a woman prowling around the construction site. Her name is Wyldstyle (Elizabeth Banks) and no, she is not a DJ. Trying to get a better look at the mysterious LEGO woman, Emmet accidentally falls through a Mario Bros. looking tunnel and ends up facing a glowing and sparkling LEGO piece.
But his instructions tell him not to touch any odd pieces...so what will he do?
For those of you who got a chance to see "Cloud Atlas", which I think was vastly underrated, you'll understand how "The Lego Movie" plays out. It skips from scene to scene, bursting through walls, sometimes literally, into other words. There are knights and dragons, cowboys and Indians, pirates, cops and robbers, etc.
The animation of the movie is probably the most fun of the film. It's odd to see the blocks move so seamlessly. There is no real fluidity to the movement of the scenery or the characters; but that's the beauty of the movie. It leaves me wondering how the movie was made, whether it was hand animated or (as I think) rendered inside a computer.
Puffs of steam become huge white bricks that float through the air, ocean waves are giant blue LEGOs assembled in a mound-like shapes, and explosions of vehicles lead to the rapid disassembling of the blocks.
"The Lego Movie" is incredibly hectic, to the point where it becomes almost exhausting to watch, though the children in the theater I went to see the film at would probably disagree with me. It has a wickedly funny script and a talented voice cast that employs some A-list names, including Liam Neeson, Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill (both Tatum and Hill voice characters as a spoof of their "21 Jump Street" roles—this would make sense because "21 Jump Street and "The Lego Movie" have the same directors), Will Arnett, Shaquille O'Neal, Cobie Smulders, Nick Offerman, Allison Brie, Will Forte, Jake Johnson, and some of the original cast of "Star Wars".
Blending worlds better than "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?", "The Lego Movie" is probably the most fun you'll have at the movies this year.
The ending of the movie is a little weak and I didn't like it at all; but the film helps you rediscover your inner child...and then it amazes you.









Score: ★★★½

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