Mania Grade: A-
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- Rated: PG
- Starring: Liam Neeson, Will Arnett, Elizabeth Banks, Craig Berry, Nick Offerman, Channing Tatum, Alison Brie, Charlie Day, Anthony Daniels, Will Ferrell, Morgan Freeman, Jonah Hill, Cobie
- Written By: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller
- Directed By: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller
- Studio: Warner Bros.
- Original Year of Release: 2014
- Special Features: See Below
The LEGO Movie Blu-ray Review
A remake with an agenda
By Tim Janson
June 23, 2014
The LEGO Movie
© Warner Bros.
I’ve been a fan of the various LEGO video games over the years particularly the recent ones which utilize the actual character voices from the films. The LEGO movie plays quite similar to the games in that you have a lot of silly, irreverent fun mixed a handful of quests. The LEGO world is being threatened by the evil “Lord Business” (Ferrell) who intends to use a weapon called the “Kragle” to prevent any changes in the world, essentially stone-walling creativity. The wizard Vitruvius (Freeman) prophesies that a person known as “the Special” will rise up to defeat Lord Business.
Emmet (Pratt), is just a plain old LEGO construction worker with nothing remotely special about him. However when he finds a special block called The Piece of Resistance, the beautiful Wyldstyle (Banks) thinks she had found the special and takes Emmet to see Vitruvius and the rest of the Master Builders including Batman (Arnett), Superman (Tatum), Green Lantern (Hill), and Wonder Woman (Smulders). The Master Builders are disappointed to learn that Emmet appears to have no creativeness whatsoever, his lone creation being the inane double decker couch.
The evil forces of Lord Business led by Bad Cop (Neeson) captures several of the Master Builders and its up to Emmit to find his special ability to rescue his friends and save LEGO world. The main, 3D animated story is tied to a live action sequence in which Will Farrell plays a LEGO obsessed father who has a large LEGO world created in his basement that he will not let his young son play with. Thus this character mirrors Lord Business who wants no changes in the world.
You could argue that the LEGO movie is 100 minute commercial for the toys and it would be hard to argue. The film even flashes the model or set numbers on screen when the characters build something and of course LEGO has released several sets based on the film. But the bottom line is that this is a fun film for all ages from beginning to end and that’s a true rarity these days. It’s a family film that will appeal to both kids and parents. It is chock full of films references and cameos that many parents will get but their kids will not. Many LEGO characters from sets old and new also make cameos and it’s fun to go back and see how many you can spot.
Writers/Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller successfully capture what appeals to both adults and kids about the toys and infuses that into their film. There is that sense of inventiveness that makes you realize that no matter how impractical a creation may be, the fact that you created it is the important thing. The cast obviously had an enjoyable time throwing themselves into their roles, particularly Pratt, Neeson, and Arnett. And I dare you not to sing along to the infectiously catchy “Everything is Awesome” song!
Dream Job: meet the LEGO Builders (13:30) – see what it’s like to have a job where you get to play and create with LEGO bricks all day…and get paid for it.
Batman’s a True Artist (1:12) – Weird but hilarious LEGO Batman music video
Michelangelo and Lincoln: History Cops (1:30) – A faux film trailer starring Michelangelo and Abraham Lincoln
Enter the Ninjago (2:13) – A funny short piece where Emmet meets with a marketing guy and the add Ninjago characters to scenes to make them more appealing to kids.
Bringing LEGO to Life (12:36) – Emmet hosts this look at how the directors, character designers, and cast brought the LEGO world to life.
Behind the Scenes: See it, Build it (13:00) – Senior Designers who fans how to create some of the models from the film both in LEGO bricks and digitally.
Behind the Scenes: Stories from the Story Team (4:00) – Creating scenes in storyboards
Fan Made Films (3:51) a look at several of the short fan made entries and winners which made it into the final movie.
Deleted Scenes (3:20) Storyboard scenes that did not make it into the final cut.