Saw Megamind today. It was really good. First and foremost, it was pure fun. But at the heart of it is some solid characters, writing, and beautiful animation.
Watching the film, I found myself wondering why anyone bothers making live action fantasy films anymore? Animation is clearly a better medium for this kind of material. Animation is such a flexible art form that it can capture both the small moments and the big action and do so without any jarring shifts. The FX are flawless because you don’t need a CGI replica of a character to perform an amazing stunt if the character is already CGI. In essence, with animation you can create a flawless reality that can do just about anything.
I exaggerate, of course. I still think live-action fantasy is viable and worthwhile. I am looking forward to Skyline because humans versus giant alien robots…what’s not to love? And that it’s live-action doesn’t deter me.
But still, animation is incredible and continues to impress me. Clash of the Titans was good. How to Train Your Dragon was awesome. My favorite love story remains Wall-E. My favorite superhero movie remains The Incredibles. My favorite kung fu movie is Kung Fu Panda. There’s just something about them that I find appealing, an unfettered ability to create reality from the ground up while still building wonderful, relatable stories regardless of who or what the characters are.
I also think it helps immensely that animators like physical action and are far less likely to have long talky scenes. They are far more likely to incorporate character and plot development in a visually appealing way, which is at the heart of what makes film work. They are also less likely to get fancy with the direction in terms. Animators work their butts off to animate a scene. You can bet they aren’t going to be tempted to shake the camera just to simulate excitement.
Maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m reading more into it, seeing more in it than is actually there. I’ve always been a fan of cartoons, of weird characters and strange realities. And this is what animation has been consistently used for, from Looney Tunes to Batman: The Brave & The Bold and a million things in-between. Heck, even as I write this I am wearing a Ducktales shirt, and I do so proudly.
Regardless, I loved Megamind and would say it was one of the most enjoyable films I’ve seen in a while. Highly recommended.
Fighting the good fight, Writing the good write,
P.S. I’ve gotten some interesting responses to my last post about what I should and should not post on this site. Thanks for chiming in, gang. Your thoughts are always appreciated, and know that I’m mulling some things over. I’ll get back to you.