Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs

Today I’m going to start off with a little self-advertising.  This Wednesday I am leaving for London, to study abroad there for the next four months.  While I am there, I will be doing a project that I started on my YouTube channel, in which the viewers of my videos choose five different places for me to visit in Europe and make videos from.  For example, the first place they’ve chosen is Edinburgh, Scotland.  They get to choose country/city/place for each of the five.  So, if you’re interested in seeing what I’ll be up to for the next four months, or if you want to get involved and vote on the places I go, then check out my channel at www.youtube.com/sharkiepictures!

This movie came out in 2009 to fairly good reviews.  It’s no Pixar, but I mean who is?  I watched it on New Years with some friends, and they had similar feelings to what I came away with.  The movie starts off strong and then spirals downward at the end; I was left feeling slightly unsettled.  It gets very strange.  Some of you may already know this story because it’s a popular children’s book.  I personally haven’t read it, so I went into the movie without any expectations.

I’m not sure how the book goes, but the movie follows the tale of Flint Lockwood, a young inventor who has great ideas but they don’t often work.  His father is a reserved man who loves his son but doesn’t understand him.  They live on an island that has fallen on hard times, so Flint comes up with a device that creates food out of water vapor (Or something. Didn’t really catch how it works).  Anyway, something goes wrong and his creation becomes a rocket which ends up sitting up in the sky, raining food down on the residents of the island a couple times a day.  So clearly everyone’s pumped, they’ve been hungry for a while.

Everything should be awesome.  But this is a movie and that’s not how it works.  Pretty soon the evil mayor of the town starts demanding too much from Flint’s machine, and it begins to rain huge steaks, tornadoes spaghetti, etc.  So it’s up to Flint to save the town.  Surprise!

Let’s talk about why this movie was fun to watch.  First of all, the animation was very good.  Well, sometimes it’s a little too good, certain characters look rather creepy.  But I liked how they made everybody obviously cartoon-ish.  Things get really kicked up a notch once the food storms started, but even before then there are some really cool bits of editing.  Whenever we watch Flint create an invention we see very quick cuts and him just yelling things like “TAPE”, “SWITCH”, “WIRE”, “COFFEE” in each one.  It’s funny and an easy way to get across how Flint works.

Things that didn’t work for me:  Certain characters were very annoying.  About four of the eight major characters seemed unnecessary.  There was a cop that seemed to be immune to the laws of gravity, a former child-star who was very creepy by the end, and a couple others.  They seemed to be there only for comic relief, but they each clashed with either the story style or the smart humor that is found in the rest of the movie.  Honestly, by the end those characters became the deal-breaker for liking this movie.  It just got way too weird way too fast.  I was actually rather unsettled by the final battle inside Flint’s machine.  As we were watching we all just ended up looking at each other incredulously.

I don’t know if I’d recommend this movie.  I think I recommend the book, because the premise is quite good.  I guess I recommend watching the first two thirds because those parts were mostly good.  You already know how it ends so you don’t really need to watch the whole thing.

My Londonderry NH net rating, 2 seeds.  

Images Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs (c) courtesy

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