Friday, 30 December 2011

Film Review | Megamind (2010)

Megamind is one of those films that makes writing reviews a chore, in that there isn't really a great deal to say about it. It's not an awful film by any stretch of the imagination, but there also isn't that much that is genuinely good there either.

The film tells the story of Megamind (voiced by Will Ferrell), an alien supervillain whose various attempts to defeat his nemesis, superhero Metro Man (voiced by Brad Pitt), and take over Metro City have so far always failed. However, when Megamind finally succeeds in killing Metro Man, he suddenly finds his life to have no purpose and begins questioning the nature of being a villain at all.

Essentially, Megamind attempts to both parody and pay homage to superhero movies in the same way that previous Dreamworks offering Monsters Vs. Aliens did with B-movie disaster flicks. The problem is, no part of Megamind feels as though it has any authentic heart or spark of originality behind it. Ferrell is fine as the eponymous alien but never more than that, and regularly his performance sounds merely like a cross between previous Ferrell characters Ron Burgundy from Anchorman and Mugatu from Zoolander. Brad Pitt's efforts as Metro Man are alarmingly more disappointing, making the character nothing more than a flat and uninteresting superhero stereotype. Tina Fey as TV reporter and generic love interest Roxanne Ritchie is again satisfactory but nothing more, and Jonah Hill as her assistant just serves to prove he's just as irritating even when you can't see him.

The lacklustre feel filters through the film's execution, with many parts feeling predictable and the plot losing steam long before the final act. Elements clearly included to appeal to the older generation, such as modelling Megamind's sense of showmanship after bands such as Kiss and Alice Cooper, just don't fit comfortably with any other part of the film and essentially come across as a little desperate to gain parental approval on the part of the writers.

Ultimately, Megamind is not a bad film. But it is an average film in pretty much every way, which is key to its failure. With the computer-animated film market more and more saturated, and rival studio Pixar leading the way in producing ever more impressive films in terms of technical skill and cinematic excellence, there are simply too many films that it's worth seeing before Megamind.