In the last few years animation has become not only one of the most profitable genres, but one of the most consistent quality wise. Yes, being so profitable there will always be poorly made cash ins such as Planes 2: Fire and Rescue (the sequel to a spin-off of a studios least liked sequel), but you can usually spot these from a mile away. The big releases tend to be at least worth watching, so when I saw the trailer for Home, even though I didn’t laugh at all, and in fact sighed at one of the jokes, the DreamWorks name was enough incentive to get me into the cinema.
DreamWorks might only have two great franchises, Shrek and How to Train your Dragon, but the rest of there recent efforts have been enjoyable. Penguins of Madagascar, Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Turbo, The Croods, Kung Fu Panda, Megamind and Monsters Vs Aliens are all decent films, some are even decent franchises. It might not be as good as Pixar, but with that track record they’ve earned my trust.
Thanks for ruining a good streak Home! Yes, unfortunately this most recent effort is probably the worst of the bunch. A few years ago, DreamWorks decided to make the jump from two films a year to three. For a while, it was clearly working, but eventually the work load was going to catch up with them. Home (originally titled Happy Smekday! which could well have turned me away) is the first victim of this. You can feel the lazy film making in every corner, with a terrible script, boring animation, and some of the worst voice acting I can remember seeing.
I have to give half a pass to Jim Parsons, the voice of lovable alien ‘Oh’, as he was hired simply to play the character he’s most famous for (Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory) in a different form. The biggest problem this film faces is the other main character, Gratuity Tucci (wtf), who is voiced by Rihanna. Now, I don’t have a huge problem with Rihanna. She was passable in Battleship, which is her only other proper role to date, but her performance here was noticeably bad. It’s as if the director or studio were scared to ask her to do another take, in case she decided to leave the project. Either that or those were literally the best takes she could manage, which I find hard to believe.
The other problem was that there was so much of Rihanna’s music in this film. Again, I have no problem with her as a recording artist, but much like seeing her voice come out of a teenage girl, it just felt out-of-place. This film isn’t all bad. Without wanting to spoil anything, the climax is actually quite emotional, but even that seems to come out of nowhere.
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