Dwilogi Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, The Lego Movie series, and of course Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, proves that the involvement of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller in any capacity (director and / or scriptwriter and / or producer), is a guarantee of the quality of animated films. Solid storytelling plus unique animations laden with color and creativity are hallmarks, including in The Mitchells vs. The Machines, one of Sony Pictures Animation’s best productions since, well, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse three years ago. Best Movie Site
The adventures of dysfunctional families are nothing new at all, and neither is it in the realm of animation. Just last year we were treated to The Willoughbys (also broadcast on Netflix), while The Croods: A New Age was one of the few titles to have benefited financially during the pandemic. Even different from the visuals, the script made by Mike Rianda (also acting as director) and Jeff Rowe do not try to be different, but look good.
Katie (Abbi Jacobson) is the eldest daughter of the Mitchell family. His goal of becoming a filmmaker is shown by his passion for making short films with his younger brother, Aaron (Mike Rianda), who is obsessed with dinosaurs. Both of them feel alienated. There are no friends who share the same passion, while the father, Rick (Danny McBride), seems indifferent and always encourages them to do natural things. Even though her mother, Linda (Maya Rudolph), has tried to intervene, Katie is already embarrassed, can’t wait for her move to California, to study film school.
It’s not that Rick doesn’t try to understand the daughter, but like many parents, what he considers to be a form of help and affection has only further alienated the baby. Maybe we all have experienced that, when we are irritated (added) by “help” or “expressions of affection” from our parents. Suddenly Rick cancels Katie’s flight to California, in order to go on a road trip as a family. Of course the journey will not be smooth sailing, but no one thought that the biggest obstacle would come from the invasion of robots.
Under the leadership of PAL (Olivia Colman), a virtual assistant who feels abandoned by their creator, the robot army plans to wipe out the human population, by capturing them, then catapulting them all into space. At first the plan went smoothly, when everyone was caught … except for the Mitchell family. Yes, more than seven billion people on earth, only four strange people are able to escape. Unbelievable? Clear. Forced? Yes. But if you are willing to tolerate that, then a fun adventure that is also extraordinarily emotional, awaits.
Often times, The Mitchells vs. The Machines appear strange, seem random and chaotic (in a good way), like a 109 minute meme. “Deregulate Tapioca” is the best example. The stranger it is, the stranger it is, the more it feels out of place, the more it tickles. The spirit of “internet humor” underpins Rianda and Rowe’s approach, which emphasizes visual storytelling. Especially the visual comedy, which is full of quirky YouTube videos, to the line up of movie references (Gremlin, Adam West’s version of Batman transitions, etc.). Top Movie
Very creative, but the main advantage of comedy is the surprise. Several appeared in unexpected forms at the same time, which increased his killing power by many times. Once again, this style is in tune with the passion of memes, as well as all kinds of internet humor, the creation of which often rests on the “element of surprise”.
But different from memes which are solely for the purpose of laughter, this film also has high sensitivity. As his credit sequence, The Mitchells vs. The Machines keep the personal scribbles of the makers. Rianda and Rowe both know how suffocating it is when parents fail to understand why their expressions of love hurt their children. On the other hand, it must be admitted that children often sink too deep into the ego. Feelings of guilt when realizing mistakes and selfishness as a child are no less stifling.
It is not easy, for both the child and the parent, to admit to each other’s mistakes. The word “sorry” seemed stuck in the chest. I’ve felt that, you’ve felt that, and so have Rianda and Rowe. Perhaps that is the reason this film was made, namely to express both regret and love, by bringing the characters through the adventures that unite them.
The Mitchells vs. The Machines are also in line with their humor, which is based on two things: memes and the unexpected. Who would have thought that the song Maya Hi, Maya Hu, owned by Crazy Frog, which often accompanies the ridiculousness of the internet, could be used to cover the climax of mankind’s battle against robots? Who would have thought, that battle could be so emotional? Who would have thought, in the midst of the silliness of the internet that is almost never identified with the “heart”, the film could make us laugh and cry? Movie Review