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The Lego Movie is a riot and says what we're all thinking
Have you ever stepped on a Lego in you bare feet? It really helps you understand what John McClane went through running barefoot through glass on Die Hard. I personally think they should be weaponized for military use.
It kinda makes you wonder why everyone in The Lego Movie isn't screaming in pain the entire time, always stepping on Lego pieces everywhere they go.
But that's probably very beside the point.
But first, the story
In a world of Lego, prophecy tells of a special master builder who will find the mysterious Piece of Resistance to counter the dreaded Kragle. Or rather, the wise old Vitruvius (Morgan Freeman) tells a prophecy that tells all that. And this great prophesied hero will be know as ... The Special.
And you know it's true, because he says it in rhyme.
Later, we join up with a happy builder named Emmet Brickowoski (Chris Pratt). He loves to follow the rules. Build what he's told to. Drink the coffee. Watch the TV show. Sing the song.
Do everything President Business (Will Ferrell) tells you to.
The rules are super happy fun time!
Until he meets the irrepressible Wyldstyle (Elizabeth Banks) and he stumbles upon the legendary Piece of Resistance. Wyldstyle rescues Emmet from the clutches of the bipolar Bad Cop (Liam Neeson), the two escape into the Legold west, and are eventually rescued by Wyldsyde's boyfriend, Batman (Will Arnett).
President Lord Business plans to use the Kragle to lock everything into place as it is. Stop all this willy-nilly changing and goings on.
Dot dot dot
For people like me, who were raised playing with Lego in the 80's, one of the most frustrating things about Lego today is the existence of so many specialized Lego sets. Lego Milennium Falcon. Lego Pirate Ship. Lego Myeggo! Have you tried to just buy a simple basic Lego set recently?
They're certainly not forcing you to build one and only one specific thing with each set, but it does seem to be strongly hinted at.
Not that there isn't fun to be had with following the instructions to build something you want. But it kind of reduces the strength of the "Lego sets encourage creativity" argument that childhood development professionals like to preach because they're in the pocket of Big Lego (which is different from Duplo, which are a different kind of big Lego.)
But as part of his Special training, Emmet learns the importance of creativity and personalization in building your Lego creations. It's not a life-changing message for most, and it's definitely applicable for more in our lives than just playing with Lego.
Lincoln Logs, for instance.
Or Tinker Toys.
This movie probably has one of the highest concentration of jokes and gags of any you're likely to see this year. As usual, not all the jokes will land for everyone all the time, but when you make so many jokes, even hit or miss, you can't help but laugh a whole lot.
Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller previously worked together on Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs which has a similar joke-at-all-times energy.
The Lego Movie Trailer
And the look of the movie lends itself to several jokes that really can't be told in any other movie. Jokes and visuals that rely on the Lego world which they're inhabiting. Things that in other movies would be white noise suddenly become fascinating and fun because everything's made of Lego. And I mean everything. Lego Emmit does "jumping jacks". When someone kicks in the door, the dust cloud that gets kicked up is made of Lego. Explosions and smoke. Water and clouds. They're all Lego. And it's amazing to watch.
The movie is CG but designed to look like stop motion Lego animation, and it's just so cool to see.
But there's also an interesting heart to the movie. Most of that heart doesn't really come up until toward the end when the movie gets bizarrely existential in a way that only Lego can.
It's funny, fun, stunning, and completely charming.
But what do you think of the movie?
For me, this one gets a 9 / 10.
The Lego Movie is rated PG for mild action and mildly rude humor.