• Joshua Buck

Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs (2009) Review

A local scientist is often regarded as a failure until he invents the machine that can make food fall from the sky. But little does he know, that things are about to take a turn for the worst.

Director: Phil Lord & Christopher Miller Writer: Phil Lord Producer: Pam Marsden

Genre: Animation/Adventure/Comedy

This film dealt with many important topics, community, femininity and the struggles of being a single dad raising a boy. All these topics are really important and the one that comes through the strongest is the fractured relationship between Tim Lockwood (James Caan) and his son Flint Lockwood (Bill Hader). Tim was probably my favourite character of the movie and went through so much struggle seeing his town move past him rendering his career useless and a character lacking any direction. Coupled with a son that he simply doesn’t understand it sets up a really flawed character and one that I couldn’t wait to watch grow.

The community aspect came almost in the form of a villain in the movie with the major who wants to put their tiny little island on the map. It is when this invention puts them in the public eye that the Mayor starts to manipulate Flint and forces the town to a position that he doesn’t care about the negative impact it might have even if the problems go global.

This film was a masterclass of dramatic irony setting up scenarios and delivering lines like:

‘‘That’ll never happen’’.

Phil Lord was excellent at structuring this story so that at every turn the irony was there. Like the machine never reaching the red zone and then it does. This was a great way to weave the comedy into the story. Another part of the story being the unbreakable dam that inevitably breaks.

Few nice moments like the scene where the machine starts raining burgers. With everyone reacting to the food falling all gobsmacked and everybody’s jaws dropped.

The side character of Sam Sparks (Anna Faris) shows that it is okay to be clever and shows how much a girl has to conform to the ideology of being pretty to achieve their dreams. However, there were a couple of moments when Flint was trying to describe the science behind his machine and Sam interrupted him and started talking all things science leaving Flint looking surprised. It was only when she realised what she was saying that she reverted back to what people were expecting of her and she’d give a stereotypical ‘clueless girl’ response.

To conclude, I thought this film tackled some important issues and showed me a character that I really wanted to see do well in Flint's father. The dramatic irony was amazing and Phil Lord really taught me how to write irony with this story.

Overall, I rate this movie a 3/5.

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