When I first heard the news that there would be a movie based on LEGOs, I was skeptical. I can’t imagine I was alone in this, because the LEGOs in question weren’t going to be from a specific set, like Bionicle or Ninjago, but LEGOs as in generic LEGOs. Or at least that’s how it was initially explained to us. So I was sitting there thinking, “How do you make a movie about a bunch of colored blocks?”
Well, it’s true: you can’t make a movie about a bunch of colored blocks. You can, however, make a movie with a bunch of colored blocks, and that’s what’s happened with The LEGO Movie, a thoroughly delightful all-ages film that everyone ought to go out and see right now. Based on the box office numbers, it looks like a lot of you have already, but for those of you who haven’t: go see it today. You don’t even need to watch it in 3D if you don’t want to. I didn’t.
There have been an awful lot of good kids’ movies out over the last twenty years. I start my calendar in 1995, when Pixar’s Toy Story absolutely blew us all away with a movie literally anyone could watch and genuinely enjoy. Pixar has gone on to do this again and again and again, but they are far from the only players in town. This particular film comes to us from Warner Bros. and it is, as I said above, delightful. If you’ve watched the trailers and television commercials and gotten a little chuckle or two, rest assured there’s a lot more where that came from. Maybe you won’t be rolling in the aisles in laughter, but The LEGO Movie is such a positive, energetic film that it makes you feel good to watch, and that’s a rare thing.
The LEGO Movie takes place in a world where all the various LEGO products are alive in their own particular realms. You have a pirate world and a medieval world with dragons and an Old West world… you get the picture. The film initially concerns itself with what looks like LEGO’s City set, which is recognizably our world, just with the strange, off-kilter approach LEGO takes to simulating real life. Our hero is Emmet Brickowski (Chris Pratt), a regular, old “construction worker” minifig with an orange vest and absolutely nothing special about him. He loves living in his bizarre, highly regimented world, overseen by an ostensibly benign dictator, President Business (Will Ferrell), who ordains only one song be played continuously on the radio, all Tuesdays are Taco Tuesdays and everyone, everyone must follow the instructions.