The LEGO Movie Misses Out On Oscar Nomination

The-Lego-Movie-Logo-Small

We are reluctant to use the word snub, but we were certainly surprised this morning to discover that The LEGO Movie has missed out on an Oscar nomination in the Best Animated Feature category. If the reaction we have seen online is anything to go by, then we aren’t the only ones who think it should have been included. We wanted to break down the points, both for and against, in a little more detail.

Note: There are spoilers for The LEGO Movie below.

Pro: Critical Reception

Currently on review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes The LEGO Movie is the 2nd best movie of 2014. It has a 96% Fresh rating with only 9 negative Critic reviews. On raw numbers The LEGO Movie should be a top contender for awards. Here is what Rotten Tomatoes has as the Critics Consensus;

Boasting beautiful animation, a charming voice cast, laugh-a-minute gags, and a surprisingly thoughtful story, The Lego Movie is colorful fun for all ages.

Emphasis added.

Con: Branding

This one probably counts as a major blow against the film. We strongly suspect that a lot of voters could not look at the movie as anything other than a 2 hour toy commercial. As a LEGO blog we are keenly aware that LEGO used the movie to sell products, but we also appreciate the movie for the story as well.

As for being nothing more than a toy commercial – is a film that is aggressively merchandised better than one based on an existing brand? The toy sections were flooded with Big Hero 6 toys in the lead-up to Christmas, and there were plenty of How To Train Your Dragon 2 toys released as well.

Pro: The Animation

We felt that The LEGO Movie was incredibly well animated. As LEGO fans the attention to detail was absolutely outstanding.

LEGO Movie Trailer Still

Check out that screenshot from the trailer above. That looks like something really built out of LEGO. The way they used the real range of bricks to create the film’s environment was something unique.

Con: The Animation

In terms of movies that beat out The LEGO Movie there is one nominee that use real stop-motion and another that is hand-drawn. Some of the voters may have felt that The LEGO Movie’s digital stop-motion style was cheating. We find it hard to give this reasoning a lot of merit – the animation on The LEGO Movie was no less impressive than Big Hero 6 or How To Train Your Dragon 2 (both of which were also fully computer animated).

Pro: The Story

When reading about The LEGO Movie missing out this morning we spotted one criticism popping up on other news sites – the movie is just jokes and lacks any substance. Having seen the movie a few times we can’t help but wonder if those people watched it all the way through. Some people seem to get caught up in the frenzied action of the film and miss the core message – play.

The LEGO Movie Screenshot

 

Our favourite scene in the movie is when Will Ferrell’s character looks over the incredible things his son has built. To us the movie isn’t screaming “buy LEGO”, it’s message is more fundamental than that – play with your kids.

Con: The Story

The emotional ending to the LEGO Movie takes place in live action sequences, and that may be a very simple reason why The LEGO Movie didn’t quite make the cut in a year with a strong field of contenders.

Conclusion

The LEGO Movie may not be nominated for an Oscar, but that doesn’t detract anything from what is in our opinion a great film. We will continue to enjoy it for years to come.

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