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Like many of you, the first time I saw the trailer for The Lego Movie
(2014) I thought to myself, "Are you kidding me?!" Yet another movie
based on a franchise of toys aimed towards families willing to cough up
the cash just to shut their kids up. Can't we for once make movies for
kids that don't dull the senses? Have we truly come to the point where
there are no original thoughts? Yet after seeing not just families but
college kids' line up to see sold out viewings I became interested. In
addition, The Lego Movie managed to muster a staggering 93% on
rottentomatoes.com, an unheard of fresh score in the February film
graveyard. In short; curiosity got the best of me.
Boy was I wrong about this film. I honestly couldn't have been more
wrong about a film in my life. The Lego Movie is not only the must see
film of the late winter season, I'm going to go ahead and call it now;
it's the best family-oriented film for all ages of 2014. Okay maybe not
but at the very least it's a very high bar to set.
The story busts out of the gate from the get-go; Vitruvius (Morgan
Freeman) a wizard and "master builder", while protecting a mystery
weapon is blinded by Lord Business (Will Ferrell), obviously our caped
and big booted villain. Before Vitruvius is kicked into the abyss by
Business and his robotic minions, he foretells of a hero, the "special"
who will put an end to his dastardly plans, whatever they might be. The
next morning Emmet a seemingly ordinary Lego construction worker goes
about his normal day. He comes across a woman named Wyldstyle
(Elizabeth Banks) searching for "the piece of resistance" which he
unwittingly finds and becomes beholden to. Now it's up to Emmet and
some newfound friends to fulfill the prophecy.
It all sounds like a scenario dreamed up by a child who's read one too
many comic books. Yet within The Lego Movie's brick-blocked world,
everything including the story feels incredibly new and original.
Children, especially the young will enjoy the fast action,
laugh-a-minute jokes, sly slapstick and goofy characters. Obvious kid
favorites will include perma-smiled Unikitty (Alison Brie) and zany
80's throwback astronaut Benny (Charlie Day) whose ability to create
spaceships is frustratingly overlooked. Plus there's Batman (Will
The older crowd however will be astounded not only with the seamless
CGI effects but with the subversive element throughout the film. Yes a
goofy, kiddy film of such unrestrained chirpiness can be positively
incendiary, at least in this case. Throughout the film there are
Orwellian elements tucked underneath crafty pop-culture references
ranging from Star Wars (1977) to Harry Potter. There are mischievous
pokes at what Henry David Thoreau referred to as "(leading) lives of
Finally there's cheeky satire aimed at the Danish toy brand itself.
Much of the conflict revolves around "master builders" who build
whatever they want out of the parts they find versus Lord Business who
wants everything built "according to the directions." This particular
theme struck the kid inside me as I was very fond of Legos. Younglings
may not realize that back in the day, pre-designed Lego play sets took
a back seat to the now impossible to find Lego Creative Bucket sets. To
the uninitiated that particular red bucket set was an amalgam of
potential foot sores but to this writer, those 200+ pieces were a
gateway to an unlimited creative space.
The Lego Movie accurately and effectively recreates that creative space
through accessible movie magic. It exhibits a fun hero story that may
not be treading new narrative ground but nonetheless feels fresh and
new. Finally the themes and occasionally biting humor makes The Lego
Movie a kid's film that isn't just for kids but the child in all of us.
This February do yourself a favor and treat yourself to an adventure
story unlike any other. Then go home and order some Legos online! I
know I am.
Tags for The Lego Movie Full Movie
, Craig Berry
, Elizabeth Banks
, Will Arnett
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