DreamWorks Animation have always gone toe-to-toe with Disney Pixar, finally winning that race 2010 when they released ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ while Pixar released back-to-back duds in ‘Cars 2’ and ‘Brave’. We all thought it was the bittersweet dawning of a new era, with Katzenberg back on top where he belonged and Lasseter always striving for greatness. But alas, no. Both animation dynamos have been paddling the mediocre and sequel wave for the last few years, leaving Disney to dominate the crap out of everyone. (Side note: if ANYONE call tell me how to get ‘Do You Want to Build a Snowman’ out of my head, I will be forever grateful.) And now in 2015 with the first release of the year from either studio, that wave just keeps on keepin' on with ‘Home’.
We were all privy to the short ‘Almost Home’ last year, acting as a prologue if you will, when it played before ‘Mr Peabody and Sherman’. As if that 4 minutes wasn’t annoying enough, here come the full length feature film.
The Boov are a cute, purple, 6-legged species of alien that are really great at running away thanks to the “outstanding” leadership of Captain Smek (Steve Martin). When they decide to take up residence on Earth after fleeing their enemy the Gorg, yet again, they pick up and ship all humans to a single location and takeover the rest. Gratuity Tucci or “Tip” (Rihanna) has been separated from her mother (Jennifer Lopez) and reluctantly befriends outcast Boov Oh (Jim Parsons) in the hopes of finding her. Little does she know that Oh is a fugitive after accidentally sending a party invitation to the Gorg letting them know exactly where they are. Now the pair (plus Pig the cat) must get along to fix Oh’s mistake and find Tip’s mum all while in a flying car powered by a slushie machine.
They tick all the right lessons-to-be-learned boxes about individuality, acceptance and what it means to be human.
If the overly literal vernacular used by the Boov while also employing the wrong tense and pluralising almost everything doesn’t make your brain bleed, then you’re in for a semi-decent ride. Oh is cute in that well-mannered but harmless kinda way, and partnered with Tip they tick all the right lessons-to-be-learned boxes about individuality, acceptance and what it means to be human. The whole film is soundtracked by Rhianna and J-Lo themselves with a few outsider numbers to keep your toes tapping.
Look, the aliens look cute as hell and they change colours according to their emotions, all while wearing funny human things the wrong way (i.e. a barbecue as a hat anyone?). Our main human is female and not caucasian (hurray!). Did I mention the flying car that’s powered by a slushie machine? Seriously, the kids will love it all. It’s a little on the childish and immature side for the big kids, but you get away with a few laughs and that warm and fizzy feeling when that happy ending comes rolling in.