Part of the reason why Lego Movie was so err, awesome was that children and adults were given the same message and it seemed subversive to both – that the world we all live in is a bit of a lie.
The child’s ‘message’ is that the adult world is ultimately a bit dumb – they take themselves so seriously and yet despite having the best intentions mostly get everything wrong and ruin the things they hold dear – and even if they aren’t corrupt or stupid, spend most of their lives simply trying to fit in…
The perspective for the adult is subversive because as they watch and laugh at this broad, candy-colored parody of the world they live in and have already given most of their lives to – it’s a nervous laugh because the targets of the humor are close to home and right on the money.
There’s not many films that manage this – Toy Story is more interested in a traditional story arc of friendship and plot in a world which strives to look like our own – the very basic nature of Lego keeps this movie more in the realm of ideas and this serendipitous marriage of medium and message just adds weight and a kind of magic to the films’ main point which is celebrating the power of imagination.
As the Mars Rover reached it’s ‘lab’ at the base of Mount Sharp the other day the New York Times published this great interactive Map thingie where you can see where the rover has been and click on different days (sols) to check out what it saw and did there, it’s a nicely put together little thingameejig.