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First Thoughts: ‘The Angry Birds Movie’ Trailer

 

Why isn’t this called Angry Birds? Why does it have to be The ANGRY BIRDS Movie? Do they think we can’t remember how played out this game is?

I think the general consensus for this film (so far) falls into two categories: false hope, and badly placed false hope. Some people will watch this trailer with wildly low expectations and walk away from it impressed that it isn’t “as bad” as they thought it would be.

Then there’s the badly placed false hope camp, which is full of people who will consider this movie a success if it manages to be better than the scores of terrible video game movies that include the likes of Super Mario Bros. and, to be more relevant, this year’s Hitman failure.

But that’s grading The Angry Birds Movie trailer (and the eventual movie itself) on a really strange curve. It’s not really a movie based on a video game, after all. In fact, it’s not really live-action. Actually, this movie is based on characters that happen to look like the ones you saw on a mobile game that was popular five years ago.

angry birds movie trailer

That said, it’s also hard to compare The Angry Birds Movie with movies like the new Peanuts coming out soon, or a hybrid of animation like Garfield and The Smurfs. Those movies were made to capitalize on your nostalgia, and I don’t think it’s accurate to consider a touch screen game you played for a few weeks in 2010 something as classic and fondly remembered as the Charlie Brown gang.

Look, I’ll give the studio some credit for taking its time with this movie. They could have easily churned out a shameless cash-grab like the Grumpy Cat disaster that Lifetime thought would be a hit. Instead, we’re seeing what already looks like a pretty gorgeous sequel to Rio with some decent animation. If only that movie didn’t already have a sequel.

Plus, I find it intentionally self-deprecating to choose “Bad” by Michael Jackson to be the song for a movie everyone is expecting to hate. That takes guts.

angry birds movie trailer

If I’m just judging this trailer by its merits, then my only real problem is how they’ve chosen to adapt these characters. True, the game doesn’t give us much to go on, but that doesn’t mean Hollywood needed to transplant these somewhat familiar birds into character roles we’ve already seen a million times before.

They’ve just made the lead, straight, white guy a red bird with legs, essentially. That’s good enough for younger kids, to be sure, but probably not a lot of the older people who also loved the game.

Eventually, we’ll see if the jokes are at least funny, but nothing from this trailer gave me a chuckle. That drawn out scene where we see the red bird slowly building his anger to tackle a sign actually alluded to some interesting character development, but I don’t think it really works as comedy.

Good comedy is when something surprises you and messes with your expectations. But in this case, anyone could guess the joke a full 20 seconds before the punchline.

angry birds movie trailer

But I don’t hate where the movie is going, at least not yet. If they can find a way to make the pigs as eccentrically evil as they were portrayed in the game and actually give us some chaos to sit through, then The Angry Birds Movie could surprise us all. Now that would be a good punchline.

Also, I can’t help but laugh at the fact that Josh Gad and Peter Dinklage are doing ANOTHER movie adaptation of a video game, but with their voices instead of Adam Sandler. What a time to be alive.

I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni

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‘Wreck-It Ralph’ May Be Getting a Sequel

It wasn’t the biggest hit Disney has ever made, but Wreck-It Ralph was still a very important film for a variety of reasons, starting with its ambitious incorporation of video gaming’s pantheon of characters and ending with its implementation of a new set of characters that we ultimately fell in love with.

The movie sold me on the idea of seeing classic video game icons and tropes together onscreen, but a sequel sells me on the promise that I’ll get to once again experience the adventures of Ralph, Vanellope and the rest of the arcade gang.

Well according to film composer Henry Jackman, a sequel is already in the works, though that doesn’t mean it’s official quite yet.

This means that the script is in preproduction, and the future of a potential sequel will be determined by how much faith Disney has in this franchise that took us all by surprise just a couple of years ago.

Wreck-It Ralph was a hit with both audiences and critics, and it managed to overshadow Pixar’s Brave, which was released that same year (though Rango won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature that year).

Financially, however, the film wasn’t as big of a success as Disney probably hoped it would be. It wasn’t a flop, as it did manage to turn a profit, but that means a sequel will be under even more scrutiny, especially because we now live in a world where a movie like Frozen is capable of breaking all-time box office records.

And yet I’m still excited about the possibility of making another trip into the rich world of video games and what makes them so much fun. One of the first movie’s biggest flaws, of course, was that it spent the majority of its time exploring “Sugar Rush,” which was endemic of the film’s budget constraints more than anything.

wreck-it ralph sequel
AKA “Diabetesville”

This time around, it would be great for us to visit more locations with new blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameos that made the first film so much fun. The best part is that we’ve gotten to know Ralph at this point, making a sequel a prime opportunity for giving him more to do and new faces to meet.

Unfortunately, speculation is all we can do right now until official news is released one way or the other. Are you excited about the potential Wreck-It Ralph sequel, or do believe it will be game over for this franchise?

Thanks for Reading! You can subscribe to this blog by email via the prompt on the sidebar. Otherwise, be sure to stay connected with me on Twitter (@JonNegroni). I’ll follow you back if you say something witty and awesome.

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