Home is a 2015 animated comedy film and a sole release of the year from Dreamworks Animation.
The story is about Oh, an alien from the race Boov who invade Earth. He joins with Tip, who managed to evade capture from the aliens, in order to find her mother. He is also on the run from the other Boov as he made a mistake and sent the planet coordinates to the enemy alien race. Yes, that it the story of this movie. And although it sounds absolutely horrendous, it isn’t like that, at least for the most part. And it can be forgiven because it is a comedy and comedies are supposed to be wild and unrealistic. The beginning is very good, instantly making you interested and the buddy comedy aspect to it is great and the two have a lot of chemistry and their adventure is quite interesting. However, the second half kinda ruins it for me with all that overwhelming action that is rather uninteresting and the conflict is rather forced as the movie should have ended at an hour mark. But it kept going and going with a very cliched plot that wasn’t that cliched before. But it concluded very nicely with one interesting twist and energetic and warm ending.
The characters in this movie are mostly stupendously good. Of course Oh is the highlight and he is very likable and at times extremely funny, although not as funny as the movie thinks he is. He is well depicted, well acted and the relationship between him and Tip is what drives this movie. Speaking of Tip, she is good, a strong female character and a realistic one, but still somewhat forgettable. Unfortunately, the minor characters are very weak in Home. Yes, the mother is okay for such a little screen time she got, but Captain Smek is just mildly funny and the rest of the creatures are not that memorable to be honest.
But the acting is superb. I have to say that I am not a fan of Jim Parsons, but here he is excellent and his style and voice perfectly suits Oh and lends much to the movie’s humor. He is definitely the highlight. Also, Rihanna is surprisingly good here which I did not expect at all. Yes, her performance is inconsistent and she is too old for the part, but she still did a rather good job here. And the rest of the characters are all well acted as well.
Now, the animation to me is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it is amazing with a great colorful approach, absolutely terrific design of the aliens and especially vehicles and it is overall very smooth, but it is also at times rather generic, especially with the nature and plants that look very dated, almost from a video game from the start of the millennium. And that alien design, although very creative and funny, is still too simplistic and childish.
The humor is mostly good here with some incredibly funny lines and body language. But there are just a couple of really funny scenes and the rest is just not that funny. The score is also weak as is the direction. The use of modern pop music is very annoying and repetitive. The pacing is somewhat good and the tone shifts well from comedic to dramatic. I also like the emotional investment in Home with some really touching scenes, but it also often feels forced. The imagination and originality is from time to time evident, but it is mostly a typical comedy film from Dreamworks which is rarely a good thing. And the dialogue is so-so with at times too annoying and repetitive use of Boov’s incorrect English. Comparing it to other company’s films, I would say it is much better than ‘Penguins of Madagascar‘ which was mostly a failure and it is much better than the ‘Madagascar‘ franchise, but it is still a typical comedy from them which can get annoying. But still I would call it underrated, at least a bit, as it certainly isn’t bad as critics say it is. I would say it is quite solid, if nothing more than that.