The Lego Movie – The Toys Are Alive! – Review

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Photo Courtesy Warner Brothers

Everybody loves LEGOS!!!!  You know it.  I know it.  They know it.

It’s because all of us have had or played with a Lego set at some time in our lives.  Heck, some of you probably still play with them dreaming of becoming a Masterbuilder!  That’s the challenge facing The Lego Movie, and I think they came, they saw and they kicked that challenge’s booty.

In this animated movie, Chris Pratt stars as Emmet – a run of the mill, every day worker bee of a construction worker.  He lives in a crazy Lego world where an evil leader, President Business (Will Ferrell), controls the universe by forcing everyone to follow the instructions when building, distracting them with silly sit-coms on TV and buying their happiness with Taco Tuesday.

However, President Business is not a benevolent dictator.  Once the Legos are done building his perfect world, he plans on unleashing an evil weapon, The Kragle, which will lock them all in place FOREVER!

A group of insurgents have been secretly plotting to defeat President Business, and one member, WyldStyle (Elizabeth Banks), thinks she finally has found the prophesized one who will save them all, and it’s Emmet, a guy who has no imagination, no leadership skills and no specialness whatsoever.

Or does he?

Some movies are about the stars.  Some are about hundreds of millions of dollars in special effects.  The Lego Movie is about an amazing, brilliant spirit that is silly and hilarious.

Writers/directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have made a fantastic parody of epic adventure action movies, product placement, superhero tales and more, which makes The Lego Movie a perfect film for young and old.  It’s a lovably goofy, silly movie that can also touch your heart at just the right moment with great themes about having imagination and enjoying life instead of trying to control it all of the time.

Then, the animation is amazing.  The challenge is to make the movements look Lego-like, especially since everyone in the audience is familiar with the toys.  It can’t be too fluid, or it would look fake.  It can’t look too boxy or it will look stupid and effect the pacing.  Instead, it looks perfect.

Plus, the voice acting is top notch.  Will Arnett is the only man who can do Batman after Christian Bale, and the personality Arnett gives Batman provides the best laughs and entertainment in the film.  This could be the most memorable and entertaining character in movies this year as the performance serves as a parody of the superhero (which is like having a parody within a parody, that will make your head spin).

Pratt is a perfect mix of naïve and determined, and, when Arnett is not stealing the show, Liam Neeson IS as Good Cop/Bad Cop – President Business’s right hand lackey, hired goon and enforcer.  We need his intensity as the tough and intimidating guy, but Neeson actually takes it further by creating the Good Cop persona in such a way that you would never know it is him.  Some actors provide their voices to animated films by showing up and reciting some lines for a few hours, then cashing a big fat paycheck.  Neeson shows real voice acting from a real thespian by creating a couple of fantastic characters in this movie.

Ferrell even gets a chance to remind us he can be a very good actor when given (and taking) a chance (see the horribly underrated Stranger Than Fiction for this).

If you are looking for smart and funny and inventive and just all around awesome, The Lego Movie is for you.

4waffles_sml4 Waffles (Out of 4)

The Lego Movie is rated PG for mild action and rude humor

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