|Megamind: another Shrek?|
Megamind is the latest offering from Dreamworks with an evil touch. It just had its New York premiere. See photos, watch the trailer, and read the film review.
(From imdb.com) The supervillain Megamind finally conquers his nemesis, the hero Metro Man... but finds his life pointless without a hero to fight.
Megamind tries hard to convince, really really hard. The bad guy who comes out as the new hero is a concept also deployed by Despicable me. But, unlike the latter film, where love of children took priority, here cherchez la femme.
The film by Tom McGrath (Madagascar) attempts to renew the worn-out superhero concept to our present, post-Bush age. The superman-Metroman is a self-indulgent and weary version of Superman, but still keeps Metro City (a version of stock Gotham city) under control. His main rival is the irresistibly clever but also unsuccessful (therefore likeable) Megamind.
And though the film begins to feel like a cat-and-mouse chase between Metroman and Megamind, a narratively awkawrd trick puts Metroman out of existence. It brings our real hero in front, the lonely and existentially guilty, bluish Megamind.
His trick is to create another superhero, but soon this results to a disaster . Roxanne Ritchi, the reporter of Metro City, will help out Megamind, and a happy ending will be restored.
A series of Superman + Spiderman parodies abound in the film, with the most potent the one of Megamind parading with Marlon Brando's physique and voice as the new hero's mentor. But Megamind spends so much time altering plot directions (as easily as Megamind changes his appearance), so that its central theme of love and change has no space to evolve.
What remains is a series of inevitable pop culture jokes, a lot of 3D gimmicks and action, a well-designed (not ominous, though) city design, and the "No, we can't" comment on Obama administration.
Is it so difficult to make a real villain in animation without making him a pop star at the same time?
Megamind (3D), 2010
Director: Tom McGrath
Writers: Alan J. Schoolcraft, Brent Simons
Cast (voices): Will Ferrell (Megamind), Brad Pitt (Metro Man), Tina Fey (Roxanne Ritchi), Johan Hill (Tighten)
Music: Lorne Balfe, Hans Zimmer
Production design: David James
Running time: 96'