Looking Out Across Our Lego Land

The Lego Movie – There really seems to be a trend in the past few years to make Lego everything. The Simpsons recently did a Lego-themed episode, and there are all kinds of video games like Lego Star Wars. I hear they’re fun, but I can’t quite understand why the gimmick is necessary. This movie, however, was excellent. It was computer-animated, but made to resemble stop-motion, with the Lego pieces moving in realistic ways. There are references to many different popular Lego sets, including some based on major properties, so the whole thing has a giant crossover feel to it. It’s not too surprising that a Warner Bros. film would include DC superheroes, but Star Wars characters also showed up, and aren’t they Disney property? I wonder how much it cost them to make that happen. Incidentally, Billy Dee Williams and Anthony Daniels both reprised their roles, but Harrison Ford didn’t. Maybe they didn’t even try to get him, but if they did and he refused it makes him sound like a spoilsport. Also making brief appearances were Milhouse, Gandalf, and Dumbledore. I’m not sure why they gave the latter an effeminate voice, however. I’m hoping it’s not simply because he’s gay. As for the plot, it focused on a rather dull construction worker named Emmet Brickowski who tries his best to fit in with his highly structured and artificially cheerful society. When he accidentally finds the mystical Piece of Resistance, he teams up with a girl named Wyldstyle, the wizard Vitruvius, Lego Batman, the artificially cheerful Unikitty, an astronaut figure from the 1980s, and the cyborg pirate Metalbeard in an attempt to take down the villain Lord Business, who wants to Krazy Glue everything in the universe into place. We eventually find out that the plot is reflective of a guy with really rigid thinking who doesn’t like his son mixing up his Lego sets. My wife joked that this movie was against her, since she never mixed toys from different lines when playing with them. Rainbow Brite wasn’t going to meet the Wuzzles on her watch. I was never that strict about such things, although I do recall making some of my stuffed animals play other roles. I remember my brother’s duck was R2-D2 at one point, and his Cat in the Hat was a superhero. I don’t know that I’m all that cool with the kid messing with the stuff it obviously took his dad a long time to build, but I can’t fault a celebration of creativity and an open universe. Why shouldn’t Harry Potter meet Han Solo? The kids playing with them don’t have to pay licensing fees, after all. Anyway, the film had an epic feel while remaining light-hearted and funny, sometimes even satirical. And I appreciated the personality quirks that the characters had, like Wyldstyle’s attempts to reinvent herself, Vitruvius’ ability to be encouraging and bitterly sarcastic at the same time, the spaceman’s obsession with spaceships and outdated technology, and Unikitty’s repression of all her negative emotions. Seems to me I’ve met too many people who resemble Unikitty in insisting that everyone should be positive all the time, and when they finally DO get angry it comes out in absurd amounts, like the time Ned Flanders went on a rant against everyone in Springfield. And Batman was a perfect parody of the character, constantly pointing out how brooding he is and how his parents are dead, and wanting to make bat-themed everything. In retrospect, I’m sorry I didn’t see this one in the theater.

This entry was posted in Cartoons, Comics, Harry Potter, Humor, Star Wars, Television, The Simpsons, Toys, VoVat Goes to the Movies and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Looking Out Across Our Lego Land

  1. We are big fans of this movie in our house!

    In Beth’s defense– well, in defense of the movie’s feelings toward her ;) — I think it wasn’t TOTALLY against following the rules: the dad and kid came to a sort of philosophical compromise– that it’s SOMETIMES good to follow a plan, it’s just not good to be so rigid about it that you forget to have fun and use your imagination.

    That said, before he saw this movie Sam never thought to do anything with his Legos but build what the directions said to– but ever since, he’s been creating new things constantly, and he calls himself a “Master Builder”!

    • Nathan says:

      That’s true that the movie says it’s not ALWAYS bad to follow the rules, especially since they had to in order to break into Lord Business’ tower. It’s all about compromise, I suppose.

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