This review was originally posted on Criticize This!
I spent a good part of my childhood creating and building objects out of Lego: Vehicles I dreamt of driving, buildings and houses I imagined living in, and other random things I could come up with while playing on my bedroom floor. The possibilities of what one can do with those colourful bricks are endless, and I made sure I tested every combination possible. The Lego Movie takes those childhood memories and turns them into a reality. An awesome, spectacular reality.
Emmet Brickowoski (Chris Pratt) is a regular, simple Lego man who follows his instructions and does what he’s supposed to do day in and out in the city of Bricksburg. Then he falls into a hole and wakes up with a strange object glued to his back.
The object, he discovers, is the “Piece of Resistance” and it’s needed to stop the evil Lord Business (Will Ferrell), the controlling ruler of the Lego universe who will go to great lengths to keep everything perfect. Emmet is joined by a team of “Master Builders” willing to help him on his heroic journey, unless Lord Business catches him first.
There have been many Lego-themed, straight-to-DVD movies, videogames, and TV shows, and while some of them are very good, nothing has come close to capturing the true feeling of playing with Lego as The Lego Movie did. It could be that instead of strictly going the computer animated route, the filmmakers incorporated a traditional stop-motion look and even used real Lego bricks in the making of the film. And it looks absolutely brilliant, especially in 3-D.
Writer-director duo Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, who were responsible for the great adaptation of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, infused the script with enough twists and turns to give The Matrix a run for its money. This is not a watered-down kids flick. Yes, kids will love it (my 6-year-old is still going on about it), but this is a smart, inspired production that goes beyond all expectations of what a movie based on Lego could be.
Towards the end there’s a moment that totally changed the dynamic of the entire film and made me realize I was watching something truly unique. The Lego Movie is a near cinematic masterpiece and I can’t wait to experience it again.
Rating: **** (out of 5 stars)