Though there are a million perks to having children, one of them is that you get to go to kids’ movies without anyone giving you funny looks. When my five-year-old and I saw the preview for The Lego Movie, we both cracked up, especially with the Batman bits. We knew we had to see it when it came out.
Truth be told, however, we’re not really a Lego family. I was more of an action figure kid, so the Lego does not hold the same mystical power over me that it did over some friends. Nonetheless, it looked kid-friendly, funny, and because there aren’t that many movies out there for kids, we went. Plus, Batman’s in it, and I’m kind of a Batman guy.
I’ll be honest, at first I thought it might be a little too intense for my daughter. Though it wasn’t overtly violent, there were lots of explosions, gunfire, and fast action. We’re a Disney, Jr. family, so my child isn’t accustomed to such all-out spectacle. I leaned over and asked her if it scared her, and she said no, she loved it. So there you go.
It was a funny movie, to be sure, and it also impressed visually. Of course, everything was in the shape of a Lego, so, unless you’re a geometry fan, I wouldn’t say it was pretty to look at, but certainly impressive. I had some concerns that it would turn into a giant Lego commercial, but that never happened. Like I said, we’re not a Lego family, so I’m not even sure if every Lego shown in the film is an actual toy available for purchase.
As the movie wore on, though, I found myself drifting a bit. The story made sense, but it didn’t seem to go anywhere. It got a little repetitive, and, honestly, I just started to wonder how much longer until it ended. I dismissed these facts due to it being a children’s movie. I presumed the meandering plot was simply the byproduct of lazy creators.
The final act of the movie brilliantly explained why the plot seemed a little childish, and then, somewhere between the cracks and crevices, a message arrived. Actually, two messages arrived, one for the parents, and one for the kids. Of course, my kid picked up on the message to the parents as well, which made me proud of her. I can’t really discuss it without spoiling the movie, but you old Lego collectors with children better loosen you grip.
All in all, The Lego Movie entertained. The jokes were funny, the action blazed along and, at times, struck me as fairly intense. I particularly enjoyed all the cameos by other Lego toys (super heroes, famous movie characters, movie monsters, etc.). Also, if you kept your ears sharp, you could figure out some of the voice actors, and many of them were very surprising and sounded like they were having a great time.
Again, the most surprising element of the movie arrived in the final act, and it made the entire movie work for me. The final act proved a stroke of genius by the creators, one that made perfect sense but also caught me completely off guard. Though the film is primarily aimed at kids, the grown-up audience can take away something special as well.
If you love Lego, you’ll probably cherish this film. But even as casual fans, we enjoyed it, too. How could we not? It had Batman in it!
(Oh, and I dare you not to sing “Everything is Awesome” as you walk out the theater.)