The song that establishes a montage of day-to-day life in an amazing Lego metropolis is “Everything is awesome!” As a 6-foot-2-inch 21-year-old college senior, I found myself singing those lyrics after I saw “The Lego Movie.” Flip Cup is great, but is anyone else willing to build something with Legos this long weekend? Judge all you want, this might be the best animated film I’ve seen since “Finding Nemo.”
“The Lego Movie” was number one at the box office this past weekend – and for good reasons. The amount of astonishing things found in this movie is a bit complicated to articulate all at once, so I will build my review using smaller, individual … bricks.
The message: Not going to lie, I was excited, but also a bit skeptical about this movie’s plot before I saw it. Movies gauged for younger audiences tend to be simplistic. “The Lego Movie” had me forgetting about all of the work I have due this week. Spoiler alert, but not really: This is a movie about creativity. Emmet is a standard Lego minifigure who has an incredible responsibility bestowed upon him, and it takes a drastic change in his self-worth to bring success. But beyond the main story there are a fair share of subliminal messages. For example, the antagonist is the president of a city and the executive of the Octan company – a Lego fuel company that has been featured in Lego sets for over a decade. The complexity and depth of ideas built into this action-packed movie make its 100-minute duration fly by.
The animation: Every explosion in the movie appears to be clusters of Lego bricks being thrown in every direction. Everything in this movie is made from the those signature blocks we all grew up with. That is, except certain things, like Morgan Freeman’s character’s staff. I finally realized that was a lollipop stick with some candy still clutching the top. The first scenes of the film feature a cinematography that strives to make the audience feel like they are surrounded by this created world on all sides: fast-cut pans across extremely detailed Lego landscapes. The journey into that world is shocking for the viewer – no matter how old.
Finally, the cast: Morgan Freeman, Will Farrell, Liam Neeson, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks and many more. Honestly, the cast could have been different, and I think this movie’s concept and execution would have carried it to universal approval. But the quality of acting through the minifigures made the experience even more impressive. (Will Farrell as a villain is just perfect.)
Don’t be a square. Watch the Lego movie. Watch it in theaters. Relive your childhood – even if you were more of a Barbie or Hot Wheel kind of person. Your long-forgotten imagination will thank you.