The Angry Birds Movie

A movie based on an app? Stupidest. Thing. Ever.

Now that we got that out of the way, this movie is better than I imagined possible, having known nothing about the movie or the app. Before seeing this movie, I thought – should I download the app? Might there be some crucial plot point that I need to grasp going in? But then I thought, nay, realized  – nah.

Here’s what I have discovered: three friends live among a flock of super happy birds. But they’re not happy. They’re angry. They met at anger management. Angry-Birds-Movie-750x422Red (Jason Sudeikis), Chuck (Josh Gad), and Bomb (Danny McBride) only get angrier when a ship of green pigs sails out of nowhere (“But there’s no other place besides here!”) and start encouraging them to adopt pig ways. They introduce things like trampolines, slingshots, and helium gas, and I thought – these are the dumbest gifts. Birds don’t need to be hurled about, they already fly!

Then I thought – Oh. Wait. I haven’t seen a single bird fly and we’re 30 minutes into this thing. Are these birds flightless? And then Red, Chuck, and Bomb hiked up a mountain and that confirmed it, yup, flightless (“Ugh, my calves are killing me.”). So they hike up a mountain in order to find Mighty Eagle who might help out with the pig problem because Red does NOT trust the pigs, not one rasher (“Something about those pigs isn’t kosher”).

Anyway. My hat’s off to the screenwriter who pulled this movie entirely out of his ass. It’s easier to make a story out of nothing than it is to make one out of weird, specific prompts: angry birds, pigs, slingshots – Go! And yet here we have it, and it only took 4 grown men to come up with it: John Cohen, Mikael Hed, Mikko Polla, and Jon Vitti. That said, it’s flimsy. It’s better than a movie based on an app should be, because it’s still a stupid concept (confidential to the jerks who want to turn Fruit Ninja into a movie: STUPID CONCEPT!). But it’s a better cartoon than Norm of the North. And Kungfu Panda 3. And Hotel Transylvania 2. And yet worse than the trailer to Finding Dory. Yeah, I said it. It can’t even compete with a Pixar trailer. So what kind of endorsement is this? It’s not much of one, that’s what.

But will kids like it?  I mean, some kids weren’t even born when the app cameuntitled.png out in 2009, and hopefully most kids aren’t already carrying smartphones in their pockets. I know it had a hard time keeping my attention, and I have the attention span of a 3 year old (so: no). But it’s energetic and filled with primary colours, which might impress the 4-year olds but is beneath the 8 year olds. And it’s got some great one-liners that even I could appreciate, and a few sight gags that made not completely resent the film. It’s rated PG for “rude humor and action” and yes, there’s some rude humour. How do you feel about pelvic thrusts combined with sexual innuendo (I know, I know – is there any other kind). But what stopped me in my tracks was that one bird says “Shut up.” Shut up was a VERY bad word in my house, growing up. VERY bad. Awful. Huge trouble. Then again, so was vagina, so that shit’s messed up (is this just me? What was off-limits in your house?).

So yeah. It’s vaguely entertaining. Pretty hollow. Filled with Sean Penn’s grunts. Awkward theme to explain to your kids. And the hallmark of a sub-par animated film: the characters dance to an out-of-date pop song. I’m waving the caution flag, folks.

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40 thoughts on “The Angry Birds Movie

    1. Jay Post author

      It turns out Jason Sudeikis is pretty generic voice-wise, but Josh Gad was excellent. Danny McBride was doing a weird thing but was partially recognizable, unlike Sean Penn who never uttered a single word but for some reason people hired him just to grunt.

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  1. Kristine @ MumRevised

    We play Angry Birds and the kids just aren’t interested. Maybe a three drink minimum at the cottage rainy day flick–just to see the thrusting.
    BTW: The only word that was off limits in my house was ‘period.’ I lived with my father and brother and they couldn’t handle the truth…

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    1. Jay Post author

      Yeah, we were 5 women at our house…someone once said to me “no wonder your dad left” and I was like: Okay! Awkward!

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  2. Holly

    I rolled my eyes when I heard they were making a movie, mainly because I did play the app for a long, long time. My son made me watch the trailer and now I think I will be looking forward to seeing this on Netflix vs. avoiding it altogether 🙂

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    1. Jay Post author

      Yes I’d say those are appropriately tempered expectations! And if you played the game, you might enjoy seeing the components come together.

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  3. drhumpp

    One of my kids wants to see this. We’ll see. All he needs is a fart joke and he’s content.

    I don’t know if vagina was off limits in my house. It was a word that took me a while to learn. My brother was responsible for most of my enlightenment about anatomy. I thought that we had tails and that girls had the c-word. I don’t know where he learned it, but he passed it on so innocently that I don’t think he knew it was offensive. Unless of course he thought that his little brother causally dropping the c-bomb would be funny. Who knows?

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  4. ninvoid99

    I have never played Angry Birds. You could ask me a million things about it and I can’t even give you an answer. I remember this bad movie Billy Crystal was in where he was fired from his job as a baseball radio broadcaster all because he’s not in tune with the times where he has to talk about tweets and all of this shit and his young boss asks who is his favorite Angry Bird is and Crystal replies “I have no idea what you’re talking about”. I’m in my mid-30s and have no idea who they are. This is just one of many things that has made me grown very discontent with modern society. I don’t care about some fucking app.

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  5. Birgit

    I have never played Angry Birds and don’t care to see the movie really. As for Vagina..nope not a good word but, since my Dad was an old fashioned lumberman( born in 1913 and worked in the bush in Algonquin Park in the 30’s and out West, hopping the rails) who often said “son of a bitch” , ” lazy God-Dammed bastard”, ” that bastard is as useless as a boar’s tits” , I was used to hearing that and would say s.o.b. And the usual except the F word.

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  6. John Charet

    Great post 🙂 I did not see this, but it is clearly obvious that a film based on an app is going to end up as a one note concept. Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

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    1. Jay Post author

      No, it’s just a game on cell phones. I’m aware of it but don’t really know it, but I think you had to knock birds off a wire or something. And somehow that turned into a movie!

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  7. Liz A.

    Wasn’t planning on seeing it. Never played the game. (I do play Candy Crush, but you couldn’t drag me to a movie based on that in a million years.) Glad it wasn’t as bad as an Adam Sandler flick.

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    1. Jay Post author

      Ha. You’re right, it wasn’t. How embarrassing is that?
      And I feel like you might have just started something with the candy crush idea!

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  8. Jordan Dodd

    I totqlly agree, dumbest concept ever. Surprising that it is better than it should have been, I mean, its not even based on a video game, just a freaking app for a cell-phone!

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      1. DotedOn

        English! They all speak English (except the youngest one who only understands for now).
        If the movie is not in the original version, I have to be drugged and tied up to the couch to watch it 🙂

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      2. Jay Post author

        I know. Dubbed versions are usually rough. Sometimes cartoons aren’t too bad if they spring for real voice actors to do the work.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Jay Post author

      Well I seem to do about 95% of the movies.

      p.s. Just you wait for my diatribe against a certain high-kicking panda!

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  9. Christopher

    I remember when co-workers were boasting about what level they’d reached on the Angry Birds app. This was before I had my first smartphone. I’ve still never downloaded or played it and probably never will.
    What’s really depressing to me is this film represents the entertainment industry’s failure to learn. At least some of the people involved in making it have to be old enough to remember the unmitigated disaster that was Pac Man the Saturday morning cartoon.
    And it’s just as bad when things go the other way. Again some of the same people who were responsible for this have to be old enough to remember when Atari turned E.T. into a video game. Into a stupid, lousy, overpriced, nonsensical, completely unplayable video game.
    Of course some of the same people taking their kids or–as much as it makes me shudder–grandkids to see this are also old enough to remember those travesties. By paying money for it they’re continuing the cycle.
    But the most terrifying thing of all will be when this goes full meta and the Angry Birds movie spawns an entirely new Angry Birds video game that will include a setup for the sequel.

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  10. reocochran

    I took 6 of my grandkids to see this (only $58) so they had drunks, popcorn and fruit snacks or M&M’s. They roared and giggled. The tree birds waiting with paper bags for lunch (regurgitated bird seed or worms) made my grown up friend snort and whisper, “So clever!” My grandies are aged as follows, 11, 12, 9, 7, 7, and 5. What did they like best? I asked as we walked home from our gorgeous hometown theater to my dinky apt? They liked the idea that anger can be used to correct bad things. (“Injustice” my word) Also, forgiveness for accidents and the town building Angry Bird a new home. Aww! So cute and they got something out of a cheap treat! Now, Cedar Point would cost me $40 apiece to get in ($240 for 6) or Disney would cost much more. I like the fact is can be a “hero” for not too much money, Jay. 🙂

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    1. Jay Post author

      THat’s still pretty spendy, but good for you, and I”m glad to know it held the attention of kids. Did they know the app at all? It’s always funny to look back on a movie and tell which bits made us laugh.

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