Megamind (2010, animated)
Plot: When super villain Megamind (Will Ferrell) accidentally defeats his super hero nemesis Metro Man (Brad Pitt), he tires of ruling the city and longs for the days when he did battle with the city’s savior. Megamind tries to find other ways to bring his super villain life any meaning.
As far as superhero lore goes, Megamind certainly has some interesting ideas, but it’s too scared to go the places a film like the Incredibles has gone. The idea of a super villain actually succeeding and having no clue what to do afterwards is pretty intriguing, but this just sticks to being a kid’s movie. The first thirty minutes is nothing more than annoying goofy antics, which is really apparent in the origin. Both Megamind and Metro Man’s ships bounce into each other, which sends Megamind’s pod to a prison…eh. It’s also way too blatant a Superman rip-off. They give Metro Man the exact same powers as Superman. Everything from his strength to his heat vision/freeze breath. Could it be anymore obvious? The city they live in is Metro City…Come on. And Will Ferrell even does a Marlon Brando/Jor-el voice later on. It’s just too much Superman influence to the point where they could probably sue. Early on, Megamind engages Metro Man in battle, and it feels like a parody of the genre. It’s almost like they were actors at a theme park attraction performing a skit. I know that’s the tone they were going for, but I don’t like the way it comes off. The film takes a better turn in the second half and bangs on the door of being something more. The voice acting is the highlight of the movie. I thought I would hate Will Ferrell in this, but aside from the first act, he’s actually toned down in comparison to his live action work. And he surprisingly creates a multi-layered character who’s not just a goofball. Brad Pitt, Tina Fey, Jonah Hill, David Cross, they are all top notch. The best part of the movie is the relationship and banter between Megamind and his sidekick cleverly named Minion. Their friendship is the heart of the film. The romantic angle between Megamind and news reporter Roxanne also works very well. Like I said, there are some solid ideas here, and the character of Megamind is developed very well. I liked the ending quite a bit. It goes in a direction that I really did not see coming. I wish the movie could have been funnier. I didn’t really laugh that much, but it had some solid chuckles, like when Megamind was planning on building an illiteracy beam. For all the good this film has to offer though, there are two aspects that piss me off to no end. The first is this lame long running joke of Megamind mispronouncing words. It’s stupid. But the worst is the clichéd use of popular rock songs. AC/DC. Guns & Roses. Ozzy. Michael Jackson. Come on! You’ve got to be kidding me? Seriously, they pull out all the stops. Back in Black. Welcome to the Jungle. Crazy Train. It’s all there. This is so frustrating. It’s like some guy in the music department realized he had one day left to put in music and just grabbed an old mix tape he made twenty years ago and pressed play. Megamind is worth seeing, but the ideas certainly outweigh the context.
Rating: 6.5 out of 10 (slightly better than ‘meh’)
Category Rankings (Spoilers Throughout):
Best Performance: Will Ferrell as Megamind
-At first he was just typical Will Ferrell, but later on he actually conveys vulnerability to the character pretty convincingly.
Worst Performance: Stephen Kearin as the Mayor
-I couldn’t really think of one, but I guess this guy sounded too much like the generic mayor in a lot of animated movies. Whatever.
Best Line: “You were right about that door being exciting.” –Roxanne to Megamind impersonating Bernard
-When you read the line here, it’s nothing. But let me put it into context. Here’s what happened a few minutes earlier:
Megamind (as Bernard): Look, that door looks exciting!
Roxanne: No, it says ‘Exit.’
Megamind: Which is the abbreviation for ‘Exciting,’ right?
I thought that was pretty funny.
Worst Line: “Hey, who needs him? We can beat Titan ourselves! I say we go back to the Evil Lair, grab some laser guns, hold ’em sideways and just go all gangsta on him!” –Roxanne
-Even someone as talented as Tina Fey couldn’t make ‘gangsta’ work.
-Megamind against Titan at the end was alright. There’s a lot of cool trickery by Megamind.
-I mentioned this in the opening, but it’s the blatant Superman rip-offs, especially when Will Ferrell pretends to be a Jor-el like character. The voice is almost identical to Marlon Brando, but then Ferrell decides to steer away from it completely, but then it comes back again. It was really annoying.
-When Megamind is training Titan, there’s a hilarious Donkey Kong parody with the barrels that really got me going.
-Everyone at the end dancing to ‘Bad.’ It’s a common kid’s movie cliché to have everyone just dance at the end, but the fact that it’s to ‘Bad’ is just icing on the crap cake.
-When Megamind takes over Metro City, there are ‘No you Can’t’ signs plastered everywhere…hahaha.
Bad Ass Moment:
-When Megamind uses his de-hydration gun on Titan in mid-air, and then lands him in the water to re-hydrate him, immediately shooting him with the de-infuser gun as he does was pretty slick.