Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2009)

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is the movie adaptation of the book by the same name by Judi Barrett and Ron Barrett. It was directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller and starring the voices of Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan, Andy Samberg, Bruce Campbell, Mr. T, Benjamin Bratt, Neil Patrick Harris and Lauren Graham.

Flint (Bill Hader) is an inventor. He’s brilliant but unfortunately his inventions have a tendency to go wrong. When he tries to make life better for the people living in his town (who are stuck eating sardines), he invents a machine that turns water into food. Unfortunately, the machine gets shot into the atmosphere and from then on, it rains food. But trouble only starts there.

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is sweet and funny. Really funny. And it’s buzzing with creative ideas. But it could be that even though it tries to have something both for adults and kids, it falls more on the adult side of things. And I have to admit that aesthetically, I didn’t like it too much.

The cast was great, especially in the supporting roles. James Caan, Lauren Graham, Mr. T (makes you long for the A-Team), Benjamin Bratt, but most of all Neil Patrick Harris. I wonder what he said when he was asked to play the voice of a monkey…

And there were some really dark jokes – much darker than you’d expect. (Especially when it comes to Manny…) I loved that.

But that’s also one of the “problems” the film has – I think people don’t know exactly where to put it. It’s actually marketed pretty exclusively to kids, but I do think that the actual content is more for adults. On the other hand, for adults the plot and characters might be a little too simple and the visuals not stimulating enough. So, you need people like me, comfortably wedged between adulthood and childhood to really appreciate it. :)

In any case, the writing was pretty cool and apart from the character design, there were some wonderful shots, like this one:

Summarising: I enjoyed it; I laughed and had a grand old time. But you might need the right frame of mind to do so as well.

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