Starring: Jim Parsons, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez, Steve Martin
Directed By: Tim Johnson
Plot: A group of cowardly aliens invade earth, moving all the humans to Australia, and taking over the rest of the world. Except for one teenage girl, who teams up with one of the aliens on a quest to find her Mom.
I feel bad for Dreamworks Animation, because so many of their films have flopped, and were actually good films. I absolutely loved Rise Of The Guardians, and I enjoyed Mr Peabody and Sherman and Turbo. Heck, even Penguins of Madagascar wasn’t that bad. Home? Home is one of the worst Dreamworks Animation films I think I’ve ever seen, if not the worst.
Of course, since it is Dreamworks, it’s not a complete failure. It’s just a fraction below mediocre. Below average, you might say. I didn’t really like any of it. I felt like the establishing of O’s race of aliens was rushed, and we didn’t meet Tip until later, and that felt rushed. Then we have this whole midsection where they’re having a romp across the globe, in a flying car powered by slushies, and I realize that I don’t know anything really about O or Tip, nor do I care for them as characters.
This film lacks a real heart. It has substitute heart, where you’re told to care for the characters because it’s super sad to be separated from your family, or to be awkward and different. But the way the film plays out… it just doesn’t come together. There are too many pieces missing from the puzzle.
And to be honest, when I saw this film on a near sold out Saturday morning show, the kids in the audience didn’t seem to care for O either. There was a lot of talking, running around, and kids not paying attention to a film geared for them. Sure, there were a few, but the majority never reacted to what was happening on screen. No one laughed. No one got scared when O might be dead. If I was using this audiences as a “test screening audience”, I would have pushed the film back out of fear that it isn’t connecting with the target demo. Somehow, this film has an A cinemascore, so maybe it was just my kids in my showing. I love animated films, and there’s usually always one in my Top 10 at the end of the year. Home just isn’t good enough.
Heart. It’s what takes How To Train Your Dragon to the next level. It’s also what Home needed so much, in a film that seemed like it was perfectly geared for some much needed heart.
FINAL GRADE: C-