February 11, 2014
Family Film Blogging: The Lego Movie
Posted by Christine Hurt

Everything is Awesome!!

Yes, if you go see this movie, you will sing "Everything is Awesome!" pretty much for the rest of your life, but you'll be smiling the whole time.

Friday night we went to the opening night of The Lego Movie, which was showing on packed multiple screens.  When I told a colleague we were going, she seemed extremely skeptical that anyone could make a movie about LEGOs.  Perhaps she was thinking of the LEGO sets of our childhood, silly squares and rectangles in six colors,  She maybe has never been to a LEGO store and seen the $100 Millennium Falcons or multiple sets that make up Hogwarts, Hagrid's Hut and Hogsmeade.  Or LEGO City.  She probably doesn't have any minifigures or LEGO video games (Harry Potter, Batman, Indiana Jones, and of course Star Wars).  Oh, yes.  You can make a movie out of that.

The first-order premise of the movie is that Emmet, an ordinary construction guy (minifigure), stumbles upon "the piece of resistance," which attaches to him.  Emmet lives in a perfectly lovely LEGO City, where he tries to "follow the instructions" in all his daily actions.  His City is mostly run by Octan Corporation, which makes all the TV shows, the music, the history books, and the voting machines.  Hmmm.  According to "the prophecy," finding the piece of resistance makes Emmet "the Special," who will stop Lord Business (whose alter ego is President Business, CEO of Octan) from destroying their world.  WyldStyle (otherwise known as Lucy) whisks him away to other worlds that he was unaware existed, believing that his world (LEGO City) was the only world.  (BTW, none of the minifigures ever use the word "LEGO" -- why would they?).  She takes him to Vitruvius, the wise leader of an undergroud group of "Master Builders."  The Master Builders are endangered because Lord Business wants to stamp out those who can build anything with their imagination, not instructions.  WyldStyle, Vitruvius, and other Master Builders, including Batman, must try to help Emmet save the world from Lord Business and his super weapon, the "Kragle."  Only the piece of resistance can stop the Kragle.

Yes, it's part The Matrix and part Kung Fu Panda.  But it's awesome.  And yes, the song is dangerously addictive, just the kind of song that an evil overlord would require you to listen to all day long.  It was written by Mark Mothersbaugh, the co-founder of Devo (and also the writer of a lot of songs for kids' shows, like the Rugrats, and video games). 

But this isn't just an insanely cool movie about a world that is entirely LEGOs with a catchy song.  The movie has a pretty big twist.  Spoilers under the fold. . . .

Of course, if you've seen the movie, you know the movie is about much more than Emmet, the Kragle and the piece of resistance.  You know that President/Lord Business really represents parents who want their kids to follow the instructions on these $100 LEGO sets, keep all the pieces together, and Krazy Glue them to keep them intact.  I would say that I am that parent, except the Dad in the movie (Will Farrell) loves LEGOs.  He just wants them to stay perfect, unlike his imaginative son.  I want them to stay in the store, or in Rubbermaids, so they won't be on my floor.  I thought that the reveal at the end was brilliant.  My 12 year-old son actually said at the beginning of the movie, wouldn't it be great if at the end, you saw some kid playing with these guys?  I shushed him.

We will be seeing it again because my husband (who is much more like Will Farrell, lover of LEGO) was out of town.  We haven't told him the spoiler!

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