With the simple sound of a clip, two little bricks can become whatever the creator wants. I cannot imagine a world where a child does not know what a Lego is. I used to have a ton of sets. I remember getting plenty of city sets – I was the one in the Lego store begging my parents for the Star Wars Millennium Falcon set, and you can’t imagine how many years a Hogwarts castle set was on my Christmas list. I spent a gook chunk of my afternoons reading the instructions on which parts would lead me closer to the final image on the box.
It’s been a while since I’ve had my hands on Legos (my sets were either handed down to my cousins or donated to Goodwill), but it’s good to see that children of today still like to play with these kind of toys.
Legos have been around for a while and will continue to stay around because it accomplishes something that few inventions can – it’s simple, but allows for millions of possibilities. A cottage house can suddenly become an army tank, a race car can turn into a cruise boat, and every Lego person can be anybody. It is your own God-like power to make an entire universe. And based on the universe created in The Lego Movie, all worlds are endless.
In a massive Lego city, an ordinary construction worker named Emmet (played by Chris Pratt) lives life as it is, with the same job, same song on the radio (the really catchy “Everything is AWESOME!!”), and instructions on how to have a happy living.
Closing time at the latest building construction has him finding a woman named Wyldstyle (played by Elizabeth Banks) searching for something. As Emmet tries to talk to her he falls down a hole where he finds the mysterious Piece of Resistance.
Emmet wakes up to find the Piece of Resistance attached to him, in the custody of Bad Cop (played by Liam Neeson), who is the right hand of the world’s ruler, President Business (played by Will Ferrell).
As Emmet learns of the plan to destroy the world with Kraggle (Krazy Glue), Wyldstyle helps him escape into another territory in the Lego Old West world. It’s there he meets the blind wizard Vitruvius (played by Morgan Freeman) where it is told that Emmet is supposed to be the master builder and restore creative freedom to all the Lego worlds.
As a guy who always follows instructions, that’s going to be tough to convince. I don’t care if The Lego Movie could have been a giant commercial for the toys, it is the smartest blockbuster a Lego film can be.
I should bring up the animation. While over a million real Legos were used, it is mixed with computer animation to create a matching picture that looks like a traditional stop-motion film. The effect plays for a lot of advantage as everything is made out of of Legos – the streets, animals, mountains, and even the ocean water is made from Legos.
Animation aside, this was clearly made as a comedy before anything, because this is also one of the best comedies I’ve seen in awhile. This is a laugh per minute movie as every scene had a joke that I burst out loud laughing. Not one joke failed. And this is because the entire cast consists of comedians who play out their strongest material: Chris Pratt with his naive take on the world, Liam Neeson with his tough guy exterior, Will Ferrell as his typical maniac persona, and Will Arnett as an egocentric Batman.
I’ll have to give this five Lego bricks out of five. The Lego Movie is already a guaranteed Top Ten spot for 2014.
The sheer amount of creativity puts this at the same wow level as Toy Story. Every little piece builds for a spectacular toy movie.
DO NOT MISS IT.
Robert T. Nickerson is a film critic. His work can be seen at mastermindfilmproductions.com.