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It's personally very refreshing to know that humor doesn't have to be R rated to be hilarious.

  • Jan 8, 2010
  • by
Rating:
+4

Phil Lord and Christopher Miller’s adaptation of Judi and Ron Barrett’s 1978 children’s book is as subtle as a giant pancake crushing a house. It's always a challenge to take a well loved story and adapt it to film. Often it involves cutting much of the story to make the film a manageable length. Fans of books often react negatively to such changes. Without the exposure of the book, the family and I went into this film with an open mine.

 

In the movie, it starts out as a gentle story of a grandfather telling a sweet bedtime story to his granddaughter about a town where the weather was always food. Barring the ‘culinary climate’ angle, all the gentleness has gone, replaced by a comically frantic tale of an obsessed young inventor, Flint Lockwood (Bill Hader), who, with his trusted monkey-friend Steve (Neil Patrick Harris), has spent his entire life dedicated to making his wild visions a reality (two of which – a TV with legs and a rat-pigeon crossbreed – figure hilariously in the film's story). His mother Fran (Lauren Graham) was his inspiration, but her passing leaves Flint with only his gruff, insular dad Tim (James Caan) to impress, and that isn’t easy. Later in the story the land’s weather takes the form of food, which in time becomes a problem, forcing the population of Chew and swallow to leave their home. The film has that as a core, but has developed an entire story to explain how that phenomenon came to be—the work of a nerdy inventor, Flint Lockwood, who just wants to make the world a better place. His inventions through the years have been busts. His latest machine makes food out of water, but when it goes ballistic and ends up in the clouds, the weather turns to food first by raining cheeseburgers, really cute.

 

Along the way, the story gives me something of a basic introduction to sin. I found it interesting that six of the attitudes often called the Seven Deadly Sins made their way into this story. Brent, the town celebrity, is the embodiment of sloth and hubris. The Mayor is a combination of greed, gluttony, and envy. Earl (Mr. T), the town policeman, often reflects anger, even though he also has a soft and loving side. (The deadly sin missing is lust.) Each of these "deadly sins" brings complications to the story, just as they inevitably bring sorrow into life.

 

The family and I did embrace the craziness of its central premise, Cloudy delivers a surprisingly appetizing dish of fast-paced lunacy, sprinkled with some memorable characters for instance Mr. T’s and peppered with great one-liners. (Look out for the TV anchorman who remarks on the fact that Flint’s malfunctioning doohickey, in true Armageddon fashion, strikes familiar national landmarks first before moving on to surrounding areas.) There are lots of good messages that can be taken from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – follow your dreams; stay true to yourself; remember what’s most important are family and friends. All the usual ones that have puffed up kids films for a century now, and they still work and are always welcome when handled well.

But the added bonus in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is the inspired lunacy of its laughs – the big spoonful of sugar that makes the moral medicine palatable, even negligible. It is the ideal confection for the sweet-toothed youngster or the parent desperate for a guilty indulgence.  

 

Pixar is the modern equivalent of the sweet artistry of Walt Disney's best Pixar is the modern equivalent of the sweet artistry of Walt Disney's best Pixar is the modern equivalent of the sweet artistry of Walt Disney's best

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January 17, 2010
Well done. It is now in my top 5 to watch. Thanks.
January 18, 2010
Thanks Bhaddad, this will appeal to you for sure ;-)
January 18, 2010
Already in my Netflix queue....
 
January 09, 2010
nice review! Nice catch on the 7 DEADLY sins but I think the missing sin was wrath (no acts of revenge) but I guess it can also be seen as anger. (you're right) and there was definitely lust for power. ;-P I sure am glad you're here reviewing, milady! How have you been?
January 11, 2010
Thanks Woopak, I'm doing well, watching "HOUSE" while checking up on you guys, Hope you had a good weekend ;-)
February 08, 2011
hi, milady, congrats on the nomination for this review...
 
1
More Cloudy With a Chance of Meatba... reviews
review by . January 08, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
The Perfect
   I’ve often said that American animation studios have always stuck to the usual formulas that I feel that they offer little to no surprises to the experienced movie watcher. They do provide great entertainment for people of all ages though and Phil Lord’s and Christopher Miller’s “CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS” is one good example. Sure the film follows the usual formula of ‘finding oneself’ and ‘standing up for yourself’, …
review by . September 08, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Bright with a Chance of Excellence
   While I can’t say I’ve actually ever encountered Judi and Ron Barrett's 1978 children's book that inspired this film, I can attest to the fact that this CG-animated masterpiece hits all the right notes when it comes to competing in the arena established by companies like Pixar and DreamWorks.   Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is set on the island of Swallow Falls, a small community with an economy fueled by the sardine industry.  In isolation from …
review by . February 01, 2010
This Has Hidden Messages Of Looting And Police Abuse.
   Plot Details: This opinion reveals major details about the movie''s plot. What started out to be a funny was still a funny one at the end but apparently someone forgot to tell the producers that we were trying not to give our children any ideas about what to do during a disaster or when they are dealing with cops. I really do not think that in the book about this movie they do not shot looting and cops beating civilians. The kids that watched this show I am sure that they did not notice …
Quick Tip by . July 26, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
I am not a little kid and I generally do not enjoy cheesy kid movies, but this was definitely entertaining. The animation was fantastic, especially the fish bowl and Mr. T's portrayal as a super-dad was great.
Quick Tip by . July 20, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
A surprisingly fun ride that truly brings the classic tale to life. Mr. T as the cop is quite funny.
Quick Tip by . July 19, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
I was very hungry after this film. Its very cute and action packed
Quick Tip by . February 13, 2010
a hilarious movie, me and my mate went in 20 minutes late to the movie, and shat ourselves laughing in the isle.
Quick Tip by . February 01, 2010
Watch out for all of the underlying meanings.
review by . September 21, 2009
Title: Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs   Director: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller    Staring: Bill Hadar, Anna Farris    Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1    Studio: Sony Pictures    Genre(s): Comedy    Rated:         (For brief mild language)   Buy From Amazon.com: Soundtrack / Video Game (XBox 360) / Video Game (PS3) / Video Game (PSP) / Video Game (Wii) / Video Game (Nintendo DS) / Video Game (PC) / Novel / Poster …
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Jen-Jay AKA:JJI ()
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Married into the military for over a decade and it does has itpros andcons. The lifestyle is great and Ido enjoy it. I'm able to do things and see things that I thought I wouldn't dream of. My kids loves … more
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Wiki

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is a 2009 computer-animated film produced by Sony Pictures Animation and distributed by Columbia Pictures, was released on September 18, 2009, and is loosely based on the children's book of the same name by Judi Barrett and Ron Barrett.

The film features the voices of Bill Hader, Anna Faris, Bruce Campbell, James Caan, Bobb'e J. Thompson, Andy Samberg, Mr. T, Benjamin Bratt, Neil Patrick Harris, Al Roker, Lauren Graham, and Will Forte. It was written and directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, who both are best known for the animated TV series Clone High.

The film is presented in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio and is shown in 3D in select theaters using RealD Cinema, Dolby 3D and IMAX 3D systems.
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Details

Genre: Family
Release Date: September 18, 2009
MPAA Rating: Unrated

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