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The LEGO Movie Review

Background

In cinemas April 3

Rated PG

5 Stars

 

This review is contains minor plot details, but won’t give anything away.

When The LEGO Movie was first announced I was one of a huge number of people who weren’t sure how it could possibly work. LEGO is one off the most recognised brands in the world, but it is also a broad subject to try and capture on film. The team behind this movie have nailed the brief. A LEGO Movie could have easily turned out to be a shameless 2 hour toy ad with little substance, but the end result is not just a great film but it also perfectly captures the essence of the brand.

The movie tells the tale of Emmet, an unremarkable construction minifigure who lives his life following a detailed set of instructions. His life changes forever when he discovers the key to stopping an evil plan to destroy the world.

The action in the film is fast paced and at times frantic. You will settle in to a new location only for the bad guys to show up and keep the characters moving forward. There is no filler here. My only complaint would be that some locations are only given a passing glance.

LEGO Batman
The cast of characters are all perfectly executed. Vitruvius is the textbook example of the wise old mentor character, but there are lots of knowing winks to the older viewers. They know that he is a stereotype and they play with that. There will be a lot of debate about Wyldstyle, but I felt that she is given enough depth to her character beyond the generic ‘tough chick’ shown in the trailers. LEGO Batman is a hilarious take on a character that could have just been stale. We have seen Batman on the screen plenty of times before, but LEGO Batman is something new and he steals the show in quite a few scenes. Looking back there are no characters that don’t serve a purpose. The standouts for me are Metalbeard, Uni-kitty and Benny the Spaceman. Between the three of them there lots of laughs.

The jokes are constant with this movie, but there are none that I felt miss the mark. The humour here is clever and not forced like in other kids movies. Jokes are made in a split second of action and if you miss them they are gone. Things never slow down for the sake of a joke. One element of the humour that I found refreshing was that there weren’t lots of jokes deliberately aimed at parents or older viewers. The majority of the jokes work well for all ages, and that is going to make family viewings a lot more enjoyable.

Wyldstyle

For all of its humour this film also has an incredible amount of heart. It’s possible that the way you see LEGO is going to be changed after you leave the theatre. There is a message here but it is never preached or shouted at you. From the trailers and marketing you might think that the movie has a simple message that following the instructions is bad but that isn’t what this movie is saying, it’s more complex than that and really goes to the heart of what LEGO is all about. This movie is a lot smarter than I expected it to be.

There are lots of movie critics who are going to view this movie just as a movie, but as an adult fan of LEGO I went in with my own set of hopes and expectations. I wanted to see how well would this film capture the subject that I am passionate about. Everything that is presented on screen is authentically LEGO; I was in awe from the opening moments of the film. The animation team have created a visually stunning world that always looks like it is made with real bricks. Scenes are clearly inspired by stop motion animation, just without physical limitations (like access to millions of bricks). I feel like the animation team were given a strict set of design rules to follow. Unlike the LEGO videogames these characters don’t bend and flex except where their real world counterparts could. Seeing Emmet doing jumping jacks I was struck with “this is a minifigure”.

Emmet

There are lots of LEGO references in here too. There is a scene early on in the film where Emmet is working his construction job and hearing the construction crew call out for parts, using terms that every AFOL will be familiar with, was great. The general audience isn’t going to get all of those references, so I appreciate their inclusion all the more. They are like a hidden message for true fans.

If you are a child, then this movie is easily going to be the best fun you will have during the school holidays. Parents, this isn’t just a 2 hour distraction for your kids, this film has heart and genuine laughs for you too. As for AFOLs, well you also get to see the bricks that we love brought to life; almost every frame looks like a MOC that you’d love to be able to build. I can’t wait for the blu-ray release so I can pause the action and soak up the way the (digitally rendered) parts are put together.

The LEGO Movie has already earned a spot on my list of favourite movies.

First Look At LEGO Minecraft 21107 The End

The LEGO Minecraft Facebook page has just shown off the first image of the latest LEGO Minecraft Micro World.

The new set, 21107, will represent the part of Minecraft simply called “The End”.

LEGO Minecraft The End

For those who aren’t familiar with the Minecraft games, we found the following information on The End

The End is a dimension with a stark, empty plane containing a single floating planet-like island made of a unique material known as End Stone, dotted with Obsidian pillars. These islands float in the Void.

This dimension is populated by a vast number of Endermen, who spawn considerably more often than in the Overworld, and a lone Ender Dragon, the boss of the End.

The set may look a little strange, but it seems to include everything it is supposed to; the set appears to include 4 Endermen, 6 Obsidian pillars and the black Ender Dragon.

Via https://www.facebook.com/LEGOMinecraft

First Doctor Who Project Reaches 10,000 On CUUSOO

LEGO Cuusoo Doctor Who

The first Doctor Who Cuusoo project, simply called “Doctor Who”, has made it review.

After the recent announcement that Cuusoo would start accepting Doctor Who projects the question was never if one would reach review, but when.

This project’s review is going to be an interesting situation. If LEGO decides not to produce a set based on the project then there are going to be a lot of very confused fans out there. When LEGO explicitly said they were now allowing Doctor Who projects many people took this as confirmation that they had already secured the license. While this does seem plausible, it also isn’t confirmed.

One thing going against this project is that it isn’t quite as focused as other Cuusoo projects have been. There is no clear indication of what exactly is being proposed, with the project creator organising a poll for which characters people would like to see. With 13 different incarnations of The Doctor, at least 5 different companions (just in the modern series) and countless villains it is unlikely that everybody is going to be happy with the final set.

Interesting times ahead for fans of The Doctor.

Via http://lego.cuusoo.com/ideas/view/16291

On Sale – 20% Off Toys At Target For 2 Weeks

Target 20 Percent Off March 2014

Looks like a new 20% off sale is about to kick off. From the 13th to the 26th of March Target is offering 20% off all toys, including LEGO.

These sales are usually only on for a single week, so a two week long sale is a bit of a treat.

You can view the catalogue here 

If you are planning on taking advantage of this sale, don’t forget that you can get a free kids movie ticket when you spend $60 or more on LEGO.

Get A Free Kids Ticket To The LEGO Movie

The LEGO Movie

The LEGO Movie is slowly approaching, and to prepare for the release LEGO Australia is giving away free kids tickets to see the movie.

To claim your free kids ticket simply spend $60 or more on LEGO toys at participating retailers. We haven’t received confirmation of which retailers are participating, but as this is an official LEGO promotion we would expect most major retailers to be involved.

We have reached out to LEGO for confirmation and will update if we hear back from them.

Claim Instructions:

  1. Make a purchase of $60 AUD or more of any LEGO brick construction product from participating retailers
  2. Head to http://www.legomoviepromotion.com.au
  3. Print off a claim form and send it in along with your original receipt OR
    Complete the claim form online and upload a copy of your receipt.

If you are using a scan of your receipt it needs to clearly show your receipt details, be less than 1MB in size and in one of the following formats: JPEG, PNG or PDF.

Those planning to see the film in 3D may need to pay an additional charge.

Terms and conditions of the promotion are available here https://secure.hmmpromos.com.au/Lego/conditions.aspx

LEGO 75059 Sandcrawler™ Unveiled

75059-1 Sandcrawler

The latest large scale Star Wars model has just been unveiled by LEGO. This huge re-creation of the famous Sandcrawler looks great.

The set features 3,296 Pieces and comes with 7 minifigures including Luke Skywalker, Uncle Owen, C-3PO and of course R2-D2.

There is currently no Australian pricing but the set is scheduled for release in May this year. With a US price of $299.99 don’t expect this set to be cheap in Australia.

Check out the design video and some more images below

On Sale – 20% Off LEGO At Toys R Us

Toys R Us 20 Percent Off LEGO

20% off sales are becoming more and more common when it comes to Australian LEGO retail. The latest offering is 20% off LEGO construction from Toys R Us. LEGO Construction generally covers the full range of sets, but excludes things like clothes, LEGO Games and DVDs.

The sale is on from today (5th March 2014) through until March 18th.

You can check out the catalogue here 

March Online Offer – Free Martian Manhunter Minifigure

The latest offer from the Australian Online LEGO Store is now available. Simply spend $100 or more and the bonus will be added to your order.

March Offer Martian Manhunter 5002126

Via http://shop.lego.com/en-AU/LEGO-Super-Heroes-Free-Gift

On Sale – 20% Off LEGO Movie At Shop For Me

Shop For Me

The LEGO Movie sets have now started showing up in stores, and that includes online retailers.

Shop For Me are currently selling all of their LEGO Movie sets for 20% off.

You can check out the listings here 

They are also offering an Everything Is Awesome Pack, which features all 12 of the currently available sets as well as a free Emmett keyring. If you are looking at getting all of the LEGO Movie sets this looks like a good deal (and is also currently 20% off).

The LEGO Movie Display Spotted At Big W

Bricking Around reader Brett has sent us some pictures he took at his local Big W store. The sets featured in the display were not available to buy, but this gives us some sort of indication of the marketing push we can expect as the movie approaches. With the movie proving to be a huge success in the US it makes a lot of sense for Australian retailers to push the sets.

The LEGO Movie Big W Display B

The LEGO Movie Big W Display