• REVIEW: The LEGO Ninjago Movie (2017)

    Philippine Release Date: September 27, 2017
    Directors: Charlie Bean, Paul Fisher, Bob Logan
    Cast: Dave Franco, Justin Theroux, Jackie Chan, Olivia Munn, Fred Armisen, Abbi Jacobson, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods, Michael Pena

    Following the success of its recent installation of the orphan hero, Warner Bros. comes back to showcase its newest bet in line with the toy brand’s movie series.

    WB’s The Lego Ninjago Movie is the third in the Lego© movie installments, following its self-titled movie as well as the Batman adaptation. This time, the movie showcases Lloyd (voiced by Dave Franco) and his unlikely ordeal with his apparent father Garmadon (Justin Theroux). Also starring in the movie are the voices of Olivia Munn (Koko, Lloyd’s mom), Fred Armisen, Abbi Jacobson, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods, Michael Pena (Cole, Nya, Ja, Zane, and Kai,), and Jackie Chan as Master Wu.

    Lloyd is a typical 16 year-old high school student so hated by his schoolmates because of his father’s attempts to invade Ninjago – the Tokyo-like city in an ancient secluded island. Secretly trying to veer away from his inherited bad reputation, he and his buddies always try to thwart Garmadon’s attacks on the city, with Lloyd owning up the persona of the Green ninja. Together with their mechanical ninja robots that match their elements, these secret ninjas are highly revered by the city’s citizens.

    However, Garmadon and his platoon of generals came up with an aqua mechanical robot capable of resisting and even overpowering the ninjas and the city. Faced with the daunting task to looking for the Ultimate-Ultimate Weapon that could defeat Garmadon and put an end to his attempts, the ninjas, without Master Wu’s physical presence, embarks on a dangerous journey which will allow Lloyd to rediscover his roots and believe in his own element.

    The Lego Ninjago Movie is quite thin on its own – underdeveloped and underutilized supporting characters, context, and depth-wise. The movie basically banked on the father-son (dis)connection between Lloyd and Garmadon, which became a double-edged sword for the franchise – a side where the movie became hero-centric, and another on the emotional side of a son longing for his father. However, as expected for a movie made primarily for kids, the humor and punch lines were light, making it a very entertaining movies for kids and quite light and shallow but fun for grown-ups.

    Despite the quite underwhelming depth of the movie, the Lego movie series obviously banks on the fun and childish side of everyone – a side that tickles people’s nostalgia where one remembers playing with the toy brand’s seemingly unlimited imaginable play tools. Looking forward to Lego Ninjago Movie, as a narrative worthy of in-depth critique is too much – it was made to enjoy childhood and relive the concept of family that seemed to be lost in the modern times.

    All in all, the Lego Ninjago Movie is a relaxing and fun narrative worthy of watching if one wants to simply chill and get a bit emotional over toys talking about family and relationships made and remade.

    Rating: 7/10

    The LEGO Ninjago Movie is NOW SHOWING in theatres nationwide.

    Discuss the movie here: The LEGO Ninjago Movie
    More movie reviews here: Official PEx Movie Reviews
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