Author Topic: THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES - AI Apocalypse...with heart  (Read 168 times)

Offline perc2100

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THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES, the latest animated film produced by movie comic geniuses Lord & Miller (writing/directing such diverse masterpieces as LEGO MOVIE and 21 JUMPSTREET and producing one of THE best comic book adaptations yet, INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE), and co-written/directed by "Gravity Falls" writers Michael Rianda and Jeff Rowe, is a tale that exploits what many of us (who are obsessed with, and have seen FAR too many sci-fi films) have feared: the AI developed to work so amazingly for our phones will indeed become sentient and take over the world, enslaving/destroying humanity in the process.  What sets this tale of "our own creations are coming to destroy us!" apart is the crux of the story, involving a "weird" soon-to-be-college freshman/budding filmmaker Katie Mitchell (voiced by Abbi Jacobson, co-creator/star of "Broad City") who is anxious to leave her parents to move across the country, especially from her dad Rick (the always-great Danny McBride) who is more of the Mr. Fix-it/outdoorsy type and doesn't seem interested or understanding of Katie's artistic passion.  Rick decides to make one last-ditch effort to 'bond' with Katie by canceling her plane ticket to CA and driving cross-country with the whole family (mom Linda, voiced by Maya Rudolph; little brother Aaron voiced by "Gravity Falls' alum Michael Rianda).  Their 'family fun' get derailed thanks to a 'totally-not-Apple' tech production launch, that makes the 'totally-not-SIRI' AI helper PAL on the 'not-an-iPhone' get jealous at the thought of being "replaced;" PAL takes control of the robotic 'helpers' (that are essentially robot slaves, though the film doesn't delve into THAT MATRIX-esque aspect of all of this) and quickly dispatches them to kidnap every last human in order to launch them into outpace.  Sounds bad, but as one fairly excited human victim realized with glee "free wi-fi!"

What follows is touching and fairly standard, but no-less fun and entertaining, family bonding while working together to save all of humanity.  It's a high-concept story arch that has a lot more heart than it may seem; it never feels too cheesy, and both the animation and voice actors make the moments work well.  Just like LEGO MOVIEs, the animation often switches from a more standard computer animation style to a more "homemade" looking animation that is meant to look kind of like crudely hand drawn, sometimes chicken scratch looking animation.  The animation style, which also occasionally puts in live-action video or pictures, works really well to keep the film feeling fresh when it could've easily fallen back on "standard kids' movie trope" territory.  The film doesn't exactly have any revolutionary twists and turns to it, but the way the plot moves from point-to-point works well, and is juuuuuust different enough to keep things fun.

The voice taken is also STACKED.  In addition to those mentioned, we also get: Eric Andre; Olivia Colman (great as the voice of PAL); Fred Armisen, SNL's Beck Bennett; real life husband & wife Chrissy Tiger & John Legend (who play the Mitchell's neighbors who always seem so perfect on social media - you know the THAT type of family), and even a fun voice cameo by Conan O'Brien, voicing the host of a PAL video segment for a rocket launch that will mean the end of humanity (but told in such a way to us that we may almost feel OK with the ordeal).  None of the cast is too over-the-top, though both Rudolph and McBride get to take turns as their own pseudo rage-monsters trying to protect the family & save humanity.

This is a fun movie, that hit a bit close to home.  Thanks to the pandemic my wife and I (and our 6 year old youngest son), got to spend a 'bonus' year with our own college Frosh student who stayed home to zoom their Freshman year of college.  The plan is to indeed say goodbye to them in August as they move into an Arts student apartment.  My wife especially took the film a little bit more to heart, but your mileage may vary.  Regardless, THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES is an entertaining way to spend 90 minutes: it may even remind you that there are indeed aspects of your own weirdo family members to love and appreciate.

THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES is streaming on Netflix

Offline stl_ben

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Re: THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES - AI Apocalypse...with heart
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2021, 02:10:45 PM »
Is this a review or a press clip?
I liked the movie, just wonering.

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Re: THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES - AI Apocalypse...with heart
« Reply #2 on: Today at 02:57:02 AM »

Offline perc2100

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Re: THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES - AI Apocalypse...with heart
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2021, 02:56:04 PM »
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Is this a review or a press clip?
I liked the movie, just wonering.
Ha; definitely not a press clip.  I guess not really a deep-dive review either, though there's only so much to say about a kids' movie that doesn't have a ton of depth.  I mean, in a perfect world someone would post thoughts on a new movie/TV show or whatnot and others will chime in with their opinions and discussion happens.  I guess I could see a read-through of this where it may feel more like a Press release than a review

Offline stl_ben

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Re: THE MITCHELLS vs THE MACHINES - AI Apocalypse...with heart
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2021, 01:27:37 PM »
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Ha; definitely not a press clip.  I guess not really a deep-dive review either, though there's only so much to say about a kids' movie that doesn't have a ton of depth.  I mean, in a perfect world someone would post thoughts on a new movie/TV show or whatnot and others will chime in with their opinions and discussion happens.  I guess I could see a read-through of this where it may feel more like a Press release than a review
No worries. And well done review then!
But yeah My daughter enjoyed it and it kept me entertained.