The Lego Movie
"I love Legos so much that I built this out of my Legos. The story of the movie is a Lego guy named Emmett who tries to make a better place. He finds a piece that is one of those greatest pieces it could save the world."— XTRATS Productions
The Lego Movie (Originally known as Lego: The Piece of Resistance (See "Trivia" below for info) is a Australian-Danish-American 2014 computer-animated action-adventure comedy film written and directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller from a story by Lord, Miller, and Dan and Kevin Hageman. Based on the Lego line of construction toys, the movie follows an ordinary Lego Minifigure who finds himself helping a resistance stop a tyrannical businessman from gluing everything in the Lego world into his vision of perfection. Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell (who also starred in the live-action role), Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Nick Offerman, Alison Brie, Charlie Day, Liam Neeson, and Morgan Freeman provide their voices for the film's main characters.
It is the first installment of the Lego Movie franchise. The film was produced by Village Roadshow Pictures, RatPac-Dune Entertainment, Lego System A/S, Vertigo Entertainment, Lin Pictures, and the first film, Warner Animation Group, a new theatrical film division of Warner Bros. Animation, following the box office failure of 2003's Looney Tunes: Back in Action from Warner Bros. Feature Animation, it premiered at the Regency Village Theatre in Los Angeles, California on February 1, 2014, and was released in theaters on February 7, 2014, by Warner Bros. Pictures. The film was released on April 3, 2014, in Australia by the film's co-producer, Roadshow Films.
The film has expanded into a major franchise which ties into the Lego brand, such as the sequel The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part; two spin-off films The Lego Batman Movie and The Lego Ninjago Movie; the 4D film The Lego Movie: 4D – A New Adventure; and the 2-D animated television series Unikitty!.
The film was dedicated to Kathleen Fleming, the former director of entertainment development of the Lego company, following her death in Cancún, Mexico in April 2013.
Emmet Brickowski (Chris Pratt), an ordinary LEGO figurine who always follows the rules, is mistakenly identified as the Special -- an extraordinary being and the key to saving the world. He finds himself drafted into a fellowship of strangers who are on a mission to stop an evil tyrant's (Will Ferrell) plans to conquer the world. Unfortunately for Emmet, he is hopelessly -- and hilariously -- unprepared for such a task, but he'll give it his all nonetheless.
Why Everything Is Awesome In This Movie
- It brings an interesting and unique question for the premise: What if an ordinary LEGO figurine must help the master builders to save the Lego universe from a tyrannical businessman, who is gluing everything by the Kragle into his vision of perfection?
- Unlike most films that focus on the idea of setting up a cinematic universe for any franchise, rather than being an actual movie such as SCOOB!, this story doesn't feel cluttered and rushed since this was being an actual movie, which perfectly explored many elements, such as Green Ninja. And yes, it's the best way to jump-start the The Lego Movie cinematic universe.
- Emmet is a very likable protagonist and does get character development. At the start, he was an ordinary average person who follows the rule and later misjudged for being an idiot by all the master builders, but it turns out that his plans actually do work and make sense, thanks to Wyldstyle.
- Unlike other computer-animated films, this animation is not a rehash, it is a unique, brilliant, and exceptional animation. Most movies/animations about Legos are stop-motion and posted to social media, such as YouTube. Here, this movie takes a different approach and uses CGI animation, which allows more flexibility, right down to cracks, fingerprints, and oil stains from heat and light, to the point where many people watch the film and have no idea its 100% CGI. Animal Logic, who also animated Happy Feet and Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole, did worked on the animation style.
- The soundtrack by Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Hotel Transylvania composer Mark Mothersbaugh is really well-made, and yes, every version of "Everything is AWESOME!!!" is really catchy.
- The list would be incomplete without a mention of "Everything Is Awesome". It's played while Emmet and the other Bricksburg citizens are going about their normal lives, and sticking with the rules. The song was nominated for Best Original Song at the 2014 Academy Awards. It's so catchy, the construction workers (Emmet included) sing it for five hours straight. Eventually it's revealed that it's a pacifying tool used by President Business to keep the citizens mindlessly entertained; the parallel can be both hilarious and unnerving, but you can't beat the music.
- "Emmet's Morning" perfectly establishes the main protagonist's optimistic attitude as he goes through his morning routine.
- "Saloons And Wagons" adds to the intense action scene where Emmet, Wyldstyle, and Vitruvius try to escape the Old West from Bad Cop's forces.
- Looking for an exciting track for planning a heist? Well, "Emmet's Plan" is here to deliver.
- "Wyldstyle Leads", which plays when the heroes fight back, is a very beautiful and epic piece that gets the audience excited for the climax.
- The characters, apart from Emmet, are generally quite likable, such as Wyldstyle, Batman, and Unikitty (who is adorable addition to the movie, with her also having a side only achieved through anger.)
- Most of the humor is pretty funny, such as when Unikitty tries to get into the office and then asks a robot if it's working, who tells her it is and Shaquille O'Neal firing a basketball with a catapult Super Secret Police ships, including Bad Cop, but the ball not breaking any of them because they used Kragle glue.
- Its a movie that, while not having the usual CGI style of a Lego TV show, is still faithful to the Lego brand.
- The film has an awesome cliffhanger ending, with the Duplo aliens being revealed, where we find out in the sequel.
- It features a wonderful lesson about working together and being creative, as well as a good lesson about family towards the end.
- This is an example of a product placement movie done right, unlike many films based on product placement.
- While the film is a comedy, there are some moments that can get very heartwarming, such as the part where Emmet realized that his friends didn't really know who he was and Emmet's speech to Lord Business.
- It offers a terrific twist ending where all the events in the film have all been part of a child's imagination.
- The action scenes are entertaining; like the chase in The Old West.
- The scenes where Vitruvius is killed by Lord Business from throwing the coin, and his last words were, "What I'm about to tell you... will change the course of history: BLEAGH!" is an emotional moment.
- Hilarious running gags like Bad Cop kicking a chair.
- An awesome blend of action, adventure, comedy, drama, and fantasy.
- A very creative twist in the opening where the Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow logos are in Lego form.
- Tons of cameo appearances from famous characters, such as the aforementioned Shaquille O'Neal and Michelangelo from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
- Great dialogue, like "Darn, darn, darn, darny-darn!"
- The tone is very light-hearted, yet it still manages to have some serious moments.
- The movie reunited Will Arnett and Liam Neeson, who were previously in The Nut Job.
- This movie and actions were inspired by Guardians of the Galaxy.
- Excellent voicing acting, mainly thanks for the all-star cast. In particular, Chris Pratt and Will Ferrell are awesome choice for Emmet and Lord Business.
- Thanks to this, the former would follow this with performances as Peter Quill from Guardians of the Galaxy, Barley Lightfoot from Onward, Mario in the upcoming Mario movie (though this wasn't mostly well received at the time), and even Garfield in the upcoming CGI Garfield movie.
- It has some unforgettable pop-culture references:
- Mr. Business's line "Release the Kragle!" is a play on Clash of the Titan's "Release the Kraken!"
- Near the end of the movie we see a medieval scene with a character reading aloud from a scroll, imitating the voice of Michael Palin from the Holy Hand Grenade sketch in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
- A very surprising and exciting plot twist in the third act that reveals the film's self-aware nature on how much it embraces many animated film tropes to relentlessly make fun of them by revealing that it's being played by the imagination of a little kid with a conflicting relationship with his father who won't let him play with LEGOs the way he wants to.
- Lord Business is an amazing villain, and Bad Cop/Good Cop is a great secondary antagonist.
- A very well-written story that makes all of the randomness and silliness work.
- The animation for end credits looks very well-done as was animated in stop-motion, unlike the rest of the movie.
- The idea of having a theatrical movie based on Legos is interesting and rather well executed.
- Lots of the locations, such as the wild west, the clouds and the ocean seas are perfectly explored and nice.
- Some of the pop culture cameos are a little invasive and random.
- While the gang tried to find the hyperdrive, It's very unnecessary to make the Star Wars cameo between the ship, the song and the characters (The Millenium Falcon, the main theme, Han Solo, C3PO, Chewbacca and Lando) since the entire franchise was owned by Disney, a rival company of Warner Bros who didn't make a Star Wars film until next year, however, the Lego Star Wars shorts and shows were also aired on Disney so that makes this rivalry equally, for now.
- The film can get a little cliched at times such as the use of the "Chosen One" cliche, although it is later subverted when it was revealed to be a lie.
- Some of the dialogue is poorly written, depending on who you ask.
Upon the announcement that it would getting the film about LEGO, it was scorned by critics and most believed it would be nothing more beyond a glorified toy commercial. Few could have predicted it would turn out to be a fresh, original film with stellar animation, witty humor, memorable characters, an engaging plot, and a brilliant deconstruction of The Chosen One trope.
Ultimately, The Lego Movie was met with universal acclaim by critics, audiences, and fans alike, who praise for its animation, characters, soundtrack, story, and humor (most of whom admitted it was a whole lot better than expected), after it premiered in February 2014. Review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 96% approval rating and an average rating of 8.20/10 based on 253 reviews. The website's consensus reads, "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.". On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 83 out of 100 based on 43 reviews, indicating "universal acclaim". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A" on an A+ to F scale. In addition, it is considered one of the best films produced by Warner Animation Group, as well as The Lego Movie franchise and 2014 animated films.
DeviantArt user JacobHessReviews gave this movie a rating of 9.5/10 (Amazing to Perfect), questioning that this was such a big hit.
The Lego Movie grossed $257.8 million in the United States and Canada, and $210.3 million internationally, for a worldwide total of $468.1 million, making it a box-office success. Deadline Hollywood calculated the film's net profit as $229 million, accounting for production budgets, marketing, talent participations, and other costs; box office grosses and home media revenues placed it third on their list of 2014's "Most Valuable Blockbusters". To date, it is the highest-grossing animated films of Warner Bros. The critical and commercial success of this film has eventually been turned into a franchise and a shared fictional universe, which ties into the Lego brand. It consists of a sequel, two spin-offs, a theme park attraction, and a television series starring Unikitty. After the film's huge success, the company, Animal Logic, was split into three subsidiaries operating under the Animal Logic's group: Animal Logic Animation, Animal Logic VFX, and Animal Logic Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based arm tasked with developing animated, VFX and hybrid feature films for the company.
- Lego released a number of building toy sets based on scenes from The Lego Movie.
- It was originally scheduled for general release on February 28, but the film was moved up to February 7.
- Todd Hansen is only the voice actor to appear the rest of movies in the franchise.
- Although it used almost all the effects from Lego, not all the effects are made from Lego, since some effects without Lego are used, such as glue (the one from Kragle).
- The movie was originally going to be titled Lego: The Piece of Resistance.
- This was the first and so far, only Village Roadshow Pictures film to be produced by Warner Animation Group as well as in The Lego Movie franchise, despite the marketing promotion not using the WAG logo. The rest was covered by Warner Bros., with RatPac-Dune Entertainment providing a smaller share as part of its multi-year financing agreement with Warner Bros. Initially Warner Bros. turned down Village Roadshow Pictures when it asked to invest in the film. However, Warner Bros. later changed its mind, reportedly due to lack of confidence in the film, initially offering Village Roadshow Pictures the opportunity to finance 25% of the film, and later, an additional 25%.
- During production, the animators did alternative takes in both 2.35:1 widescreen, and 1.33:1 Academy format, on the assumption that not all theaters booking the film would rush to equip themselves with expensive wide screens and stereophonic sound-playback equipment. For the Amazon Prime version with bonus features after the film, a matted 16:9 transfer from the 1.33:1-framed flat negative was played. The flat 1.33:1 Academy format version, however, did turn up in full 4:3 open-matte (1.33:1) on at least a few international copies on DVD, Blu-ray Disc, Blu-ray 3D, and 4K Ultra HD outside of the U.S. and Canada, such as DVD and Blu-ray copies from France and Japan and a DVD copy from Brazil. All of these even feature the film's original English audio track.
- Dan Lin recalled the closure of their deal to feature the characters as hectic, as The Walt Disney Company announced their purchase of Lucasfilm a few weeks after the filmmakers had traveled there and received permission to include them.
- Benny the spaceman was based on the line of Lego space sets sold in the 1980s, and his design includes the broken helmet chin strap, a common defect of the space sets at that time. Miller's childhood Space Village playset was used in the film.
- In LEGO Dimensions, Wyldstyle, Emmet, Benny, Bad Cop, and Unikitty were all playable characters.
- Likewise, Lord Business was the boss battle. However, whereas in the movie where he was voiced by Will Ferrell, his voice role was replaced by Nolan North.
- When the film was released in New Zealand, it garnered controversy for the "Middle Zealand" joke, where people thought that the "poverty and illiteracy" parts in Vitruvius' description, were jabs at the country's Maori Inhabitants, it was then later explained by Warner Bros. that the "Middle Zealand" name was actually poking fun at the Lord of The Rings trilogy.
- This film was created simultaneously in both a 2.39:1 "scope" widescreen version for theaters that had anamorphic lens projection equipment and a 1.37:1 "flat" Academy ratio version (matted to 1.85:1 for theaters and 1.78:1 for Amazon Prime with bonus features) for theaters that used only spherical lens projection equipment. Each time a shot was completed for the scope version, the animators had to render another take for the "flat" version. Warner Bros. has released on Amazon Prime Video both the "anamorphic" and "spherical" versions, the latter of which also has bonus features after the film. Other CGI films also rendered in both aspect ratios included Cars, The Incredibles and A Bug's Life. The "flat" (1.37:1) version is also available on the second Blu-ray disc of the Special Special Edition Blu-ray release of this film, in a matted 1.78:1 ratio and with a new audio commentary included.
- Abraham Lincoln is voiced by Will Forte, who also happens to voice the character of the same name in the 2002 show, Clone High. Fun fact, the show was created by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the directors of The Lego Movie.
- According to the DVD commentary, Will Forte was billed as "Orville Forte" due to a typo. Forte's actual first name (his full name is Orville Willis Forte IV) rather than his professional name was listed on a form used when compiling the end credits. When informed of the mistake, Forte asked the producers to leave the "incorrect" billing as it was. Thus, the voice of "Abraham Lincoln" remained credited to "Orville Forte."
- When the movie is shown on YouTube throughout Brick Friday 2018 (November 23rd, 2018) as a promotional advertisement for The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, the words "Based on" in the "Based on LEGO Construction Toys" credit is absent. This is also in this case on the Art of the Title website.
- Except for the Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures logos and even the debut of the Warner Animation Group logo (all presented in LEGO), there are no opening credits, not even the film's title, which doesn't appear until the end of the main-on-end credits.
- At the end credits, we hear the whole version of Batman's song and even one final version of "Everything is Awesome".
- The term "Master Builder" is actually an official designation by the LEGO Company; per their website, "LEGO® Master Builders are the highly-trained and super-creative builders who design all of the official LEGO sets. Other LEGO Master Builders create giant, detailed sculptures out of LEGO bricks for LEGOLAND® Parks and special events all around the world."
- Chris Pratt and Charlie Day, Emmet and Benny's voice actors, will be reunited in the upcoming Mario Movie as Mario and Luigi respectively.
- With the exception of unique pieces for the characters in the film (President Business's hair and evil helmet) every LEGO piece in the movie exists and can be used in sets.
- The stop-motion sequence in the ending credits was created by the studio Alma Mater with Stoopid Buddy Stoodios and took almost a year to produce.
|Warner Animation Group (formerly known as Warner Bros. Feature Animation)|
Warner Bros. Feature Animation
Warner Animation Group
|Village Roadshow Pictures|
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