They really will make a film of anything these days. Books, other films (I'm looking at you, RoboCop although I'm dearly wishing I wasn't), newspaper articles, rollercoasters, and boardgames have all been used as inspiration for a film. Following on from Transformers and G.I. Joe, there's also now... The LEGO Movie.
Generic construction worker Emmet (voiced by Chris Pratt) is a genial, easy-going, follow-the-instructions kind of guy, living and working in the town of Bricksburg which is run by President Business (voiced by Will Ferrell). However, Emmet's safe and ordered world is about to be changed as he becomes embroiled in a plot to save the world... For what could have easily been a hundred minute toy ad, The LEGO Movie manages to be laugh-out-loud funny, totally surreal and eminently enjoyable.
The voice cast is top-notch throughout, with great turns from Morgan Freeman as wise wizard Vitruvius, Elizabeth Banks as Master Builder Wyldstyle and an absolutely brilliant performance by Will Arnett as none other than... Batman! Bear in mind, Lego has the rights to a LOT of different franchises and there's a lot of fun to be had spotting the various characters. Ferrell is great as the villain of the piece whilst there's a great turn by Liam Neeson as a police officer who is both Good Cop and Bad Cop in one. There are also some genius little cameos which I won't spoil for you but which add to the general fun.
The animation is a mix of computer generated action and use of stop-motion with what looks like actual Lego pieces, even down to things like lightning bolts, fire, explosions and water. It's visually impressive, but probably doesn't need the 3D treatment (I did actually see this in 3D).
It will keep children and adults alike entertained and is an enjoyable slice of feelgood popcorn fun- just what I was in need of after a few weeks of heavy, intense dramas. All said, it was a whole lot of fun.
The LEGO Movie had previews last weekend (8th and 9th February) and is on general release in 2D and 3D releases from Friday 14th February.
Rating: 4 out of 5