Directed by comedy/animation duo Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (who also directed Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs (2009) and 21 Jump Street (2012)), The Lego Movie is the 60 million dollar animated feature about an ordinary Lego® minifigure who is mistaken for a “MasterBuilder” and recruited to join a quest to stop the evil Lord Business.
The cast for this movie is absolutely stacked. Actors who contributed their voice talents to the film include Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Morgan Freeman (in his first animated role), WIll Arnett, Alison Brie, Charlie Day, Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson, Nick Offerman, Will Forte, Dave Franco, Jonah Hill, Shaquille O’Neal, Anthony Daniels (reprising his role as C-3PO), Billy Dee Williams (Reprising his role as Lando), and Channing Tatum. If for nothing else, the enthusiasm of the actors helps make this movie fun.
The Lego Movie was animated digitally, but stylized to look like stop-motion. This, on top of the fact that everything in the film was designed to look as if were built out of Lego® pieces, contributed to a nostalgic feel. However, during action sequences, the film wasn’t pulled down by normal limitations of stop-motion. As much as I was impressed by the animation though, I thought some of the sound mixing was rather amateurish. The character dialogue often didn’t flow, or was at the wrong volume. That might be nitpicking, but every time it happened, I was taken out of the movie.
The script for The Lego Movie was very good. The dialogue was very well written, with jokes for both kids and adults. There was some commentary on individualism and mass-consumerism – a pleasant surprise. And although the story was formulaic, it was also self-aware. Given its message of ingenuity, The Lego Movie spends a long time on the verge of hypocrisy, but saves itself by the end, with a heartwarming twist.
Overall, The Lego Movie doesn’t leave too much room for emotional attachment, but it’s well put-together, and wildly entertaining. It’s one of the better animated films I’ve seen in a while. 8/10.