Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


>> Saturday, November 6, 2010

I'm blue, dum, dum, dee...

Will Ferrel has treated us over the past decade to a lot of memorable characters. While Ferrell seems to always play the same kind of character (naive, silly and childlike), he also has the ability to play things as a real straight shooter - as is the case with movies like 2006's Stranger Than Fiction, which I really enjoyed. Even if he hasn't fully yet taken to the Jim Carrey and Robin Williams route of playing 'so serious it's spooky' roles, he does somehow seem to find his way into many different roles for the same type of character.

For example, the character we see in Elf (2003) is not much different than that in Anchorman (2004) or Step Brothers (2008). It all deals with childhood adolescence and stubbornness, akin to and old man being stuck in his ways. 'Now' means 'now' and if it turns out to be otherwise, a tantrum ensues.

In Megamind, it's no different. This time however, the tantrum is, surprisingly, much darker than arbitrarily shouting "Son of a nutcracker!" and moving on. Ferrell plays Megamind, a blue-faced, kind-eyed outcast who came to Earth from his home planet in a journey not unlike that of Superman. The difference being that Megamind came to Earth at the same time as another extra-terrestrial, Metro Man (Brad Pitt) - who actually is, well, more like Superman, While Metro Man has everything given to him and soon becomes humanity's favorite saviour, Megamind immediately lands in a prison and is forced into a life of evil. Problem is, Megamind was never really that good at being evil - in fact he only decided to be evil after being rejected by peers, teachers and pretty much everyone else (which would make anyone blue in the face, I imagine).

As the years progress, nothing changes between Megamind and Metro Man. Metro Man always wins and gets the girl, meanwhile Megamind goes back to jail. That is until one day when Megamind succeeds in one of his evil plans and actually destroys Metro Man. Soon Megamind begins to get everything he's ever wanted (as nobody on Earth is powerful enough to stop him), and that's when we see something quite surprising - Megamind begins to realize that without the good doings of Metro Man to challenge him, he lacks purpose. He becomes a depressed, bored loner who starts to face an identity crisis.

Although I wish not give too much away, beneath the cartoonish, silly front of Megamind I was surprised to find an underlying layer of more adult themes. Watching the film revealed a lot of truths about the uncertainties many people face when they're not sure if they are doing what they should in life - including the opportunities a lot of us find ourselves forced into. Megamind deals with his particular crisis by transforming into different people to get what he wants, including a relationship with reporter Roxanne Ritchi (Tina Fey), as well as an apprentice in Ritchi's cameraman, played by the always pleasant (if not overused) Jonah Hill.

I always find it relatively interesting going into a movie, and walking out knowing I'm remembering something about the film that may be the farthest thing from what I'm supposed to. In this case, I may be over-analyzing Megamind, putting themes in there that aren't. In a lot of ways there was an original air surrounding this film, one that seemed to be hidden behind 3-D entertainment made for children. I felt a similar thing walking out of Despicable Me (2010).

Megamind gets an open door. In the end it's funny, occasionally witty and Will Ferrell adds a lot of fun to what is sure to be a lot of ad libbed lines. I also wanted to mention the performances of David Cross and Brad Pitt, who play Minion and Metro Man, respectively. They are more or less what you expect, but considering each of them are capable of carrying movies on their own, it's nice to see them not overstay their welcome. With movies like Avatar (2009) and The Smurfs (2011) surrounding this film, I guess the obvious thing to take note of, is that blue is cool, and so is Megamind.

*Stills courtesy of Dreamworks Animation


About This Blog

  © Free Blogger Templates Skyblue by 2008

Back to TOP