*Spoiler Alert, Were living it!
Young Katie Mitchell embarks on a road trip with her proud parents, younger brother and beloved dog to start her first year at film school. But their plans to bond as a family soon get interrupted when the world’s electronic devices come to life to stage an uprising. With help from two friendly robots, the Mitchells must now come together to save one another — and the planet — from the new technological revolution.
“My parents haven’t figured me out yet. To be fair, it took a while to figure myself out.”
We have talked so much on this site about the different Animation studios and which is better than which, however I do not think we have had the Sony conversation really. Quietly this studio has built a heck of a collection and a lot of that is due to the duo of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.
From the Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs movies, to the incredible Spider Verse film, and now this new movie The Mitchell’s vs. the Machines, they continue to push the envelope on what animation can be. We will discuss in the categories but what I love about their movies is that they do seem to have something to say about the world. And that shines through in the writing and the look of this story. But enough background, lets get to the Ratings.
Animation – A
I love the style they have created as a team. It feels hand drawn but they can do things that you would never imagine possible. Like Spider Verse, they are using editing tricks that feel like live action movies. It all feels very clever immerses you into the world of The Mitchell’s. It also just looked amazing on a big screen and I wish I could have seen this in a theater and not on Netflix. However, the creativity and unique nature of the Animation really makes this stand out even among great Pixar or Disney movies.
Voice Cast – A–
As with most great Animated movies, the voice cast is great. It was really fun to hear Danny McBride play a nervous father, and to see Abbi Jacobson (Broad City) get a starring role. Of course, Maya Rudolph does what she does best, but names like Olivia Colman, Eric Andre, and Fred Armisen round out a really fun and yes diverse cast.
Music – B+
What an incredibly creative and unique score that was done by Mark Mothersbaugh (Thor Ragnarok). They really weave the score in to the way that they tell the story and it makes the movie that much more immersive. Sure some of the song choices were a little cliche, but I did love the credits song On My Way. Had my head bopping and made me not want to turn off my Netflix feed right away.
Story – B–
At the end of the day here you have elements of stories we have seen before. Kid in the family thinks they do not fit in and just want to go away. But on the flip side the Dad who has to remind himself why he loves his daughter (I know ridiculous right), and is willing to drive her across the country to do that. Realistically this story could be the classic Martin Lawrence film College Road Trip. However, we do get that little twist of Machines taking over the world. And yes kids will see this as basically a machine attack, but we Adults do see the overall metaphor of what is happening in our world. Machines run our lives if we want to or not. There is a joke in the movie about a Tennis Racket that is automated, which feels true. Everything in our lives is run by these phones and computers, so sometimes it is hard to remember what can be really important. This does come together though as a great family movie and a really fun adventure as a whole.
*A couple other tidbits
- The film nerd aspect of this movie, obviously was right up my alley.
- The Furby scene reminded me of the Gummy Bear scene in Goosebumps 2.
- Connected was the original name for this movie, and even though it is on the nose, I think they made a good choice changing that.
- Subtle Netflix marketing, with the Dawn of the Dead reference, with the Army of the Dead movie dropping very soon.
This was a great movie, and it really felt like it did have something to say about our society. Sony has really created their own unique animation style and have started to become appt. viewing with the best of the best in animation. It will be interesting if we do start to see more streaming collaborations though with animation or if it will go back to the theater. Either way this is an easy click to watch and a great time.
*You can find my 2021 Movie Rankings here.
*You can find all of my Movie Ratings here.
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