The Lego Movie (2014)
Directed by: Christopher Miller, Phil Lord
Written by: Christopher Miller, Dan Hageman, Kevin Hageman, Phil Lord
Starring: Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Jonah Hill, Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman, Will Arnett, Will Ferrell
Running Time: 100 mins
Reviewer: David Gillespie – Official HCF Artist
I could count on my left hand the amount of times that a children’s movie has excited me in the last ten years. Most of them stay to the same formula of dopey hero that turns good and feisty heroine that still needs saved. Fortunately for all parents braving the first lego movie (I have no doubt this will be one of many), directors Miller and Lord (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs) have created a film that is a finely crafted blend of the independent glazed Fantastic Mr Fox (2009) and the traditional Disney template. The makers have realised that not only is lego a unisex toy but it is an ageless one too. This is the foundation in which the story is built.
The opening sequence is so purposely amateurish (to recall the past) that you might think that you’ve accidently stumbled into the new Trey Parker and Matt Stone animation. Wizard and Master Builder Vitruvius (voiced by Morgan Freeman) is confronted, blinded and thrown into the abyss by the evil Lord Business (Will Ferrell). Before Business can take hold of a powerful weapon (a red block) that Vitruvious is protecting, the wizard warns him of the rise of the ‘special’, a master builder that will bring about his downfall. Enter Emmet (Chris Pratt), an unremarkable and bland builder with few friends and motivations in his life. When Emmet unwittingly gets attached to the weapon that Lord Business seeks, he is kidnapped by a special forces team led by Bad Cop/ Good Cop (a hilarious turn by Liam Neeson). Fortunately for Emmet, a brave woman called Wildstyle is also after the artefact. After escaping the compound, the couple team up with batman to take on Lord Business and bring about the collapse of conformist design.
If only all family movies could raise the bar to the standards set by The Lego movie. This is great stuff for both adults and children alike with thrilling chase sequences across a variety of locations and a fresh, funny and occasionally surreal script. It also features a horrendously catchy dance track called ‘Everything is Awesome’ which you will sing along to at your workplace weeks after viewing the film. The story even has the ambition to question the ability to allow your imagination to go into overdrive with lego over following set instruction. The Lego Movie is a marvellous adventure and a must to take your children to.