Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

Meet the Robinsons is a 2007 animated science fiction comedy film which is the 47th Disney animated feature. It is such a solid, underrated Disney flick.

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Why is your dog wearing glasses?

Oh, because his insurance won’t pay for contacts

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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I really like this movie and it is actually one of the better Disney films from their Second Dark Age. It is definitely underrated, but I can see why some people may not like it and it definitely isn’t the most memorable film out there. But despite its structural problems, the story remains its biggest strength.

Yes, Disney movies usually have stronger characters or music than the plot, but this time around it is most certainly the opposite case. This is probably the best that the company did regarding the future as I prefer it over ‘Treasure Planet’ honestly. It is a darn good time travel flick that utilizes on its premise so well and it never became a retread of ‘Back to the Future’ that it easily could have become. It is its own thing.

I liked the first act as it introduces you to its story and main characters well. And of course the third act is where the movie absolutely shines as it is filled with such a wonderful family drama so well executed. The highlights are what they did with the villain, the scene at the orphanage which was emotional and of course the sky writing scene is beautiful. I adored that ending with one of my favorite Disney songs playing in the background and when they showed Walt’s quote about moving forward afterwards, well, it just made my day and I was so emotional.

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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But that second act is so problematic that it seriously affected the movie and hurt it from being quite good to just solid. I am talking about the characters. They are problematic in this movie and the Robinson family are a lovely bunch and the film has a lot of heart. However, they are too eccentric. I loved some of it, but the movie tried too hard that eccentricity card to the point of being overwhelming. And the family has so many members that it was hard keeping up and it seriously affected an otherwise solid character development.

Let’s talk about that family. The frogs are ridiculous and I just could not get past that no matter how cute they were. They felt tacked in on the movie needlessly. The various uncles were forgettable and most of the men in the family were not memorable at all. The robot himself is much less annoying than B. E. N. from ‘Treasure Planet’, but that is because he was less used and not because he was anything special to begin with.

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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Lucille and Bud are the only really memorable members of the family and I loved both of them, so quirky and full of heart. And the wife also had her moments, but was your typical cartoon wife in some ways. But let’s talk about the big three characters: Wilbur, Lewis and the villain. Wilbur is very good and although somewhat typical, I loved his relationship with Lewis and that brotherly/fatherly relationship was very interesting.

Lewis is called Cornelius in the future and I really enjoyed that the movie did not employ that usual bullcrap with not supposed to be meeting yourself in the future or past and actually had the two of them meet. A very rewarding scene emotionally. Lewis is a good protagonist, not great, but good for who they were trying to portray and is better than most modern Disney main characters.

The Bowler Hat Guy is the very best character that Meet the Robinsons has to offer by far. At first I was slightly annoyed by his comedic presence, but still his design and voice were quite interesting and he was cartoony, but also felt like a human being in the end. Yes, he isn’t a villain and is in the end explained that he is Goob in the past and I loved that twist, so well done. Lewis helping him eventually was wonderful and I loved how he genuinely felt sorry for what he did. An excellent story for him and a great characterization.

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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The animation is such a great improvement over ‘Chicken Little’ that it was honestly baffling to witness. It still needed some work in the backgrounds that honestly looked poor for the most part, but I really enjoyed its colorful approach and the designs of the characters are quirky and quite authentic in their own right. This future was fun over serious, bright over dark, imaginative over realistic and I honestly loved it, especially the buildings and the transportation.

Meet the Robinsons has just a couple of songs in it as it isn’t a musical. Another Believer is tonally in line with the movie’s feel itself, but I just did not enjoy it that much as it is forgettable and almost too modern. But Little Wonders is just, well, wondrous! A very underrated song that is the best of this era for the studio, it wonderfully accompanies that emotional ending and is so well sung by Rob Thomas and although catchy, it is more moving and poignant in its approach with such heartfelt lyrics.

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Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

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The film features a surprisingly strong humor and it is the funniest Disney has been since ‘The Emperor’s New Groove’. Some of the lines from Bud as well as the line about T-Rex’s small hands were just hilarious and I was honestly caught off-guard at how funny some moments were. The film is weakly paced and so incredibly rushed as it needed a much bigger runtime to tell this rich story. But overall it is one of Disney’s most underrated and most endearing modern efforts.

It is way too rushed in its pace and that second act is enormously chaotic to the point of hurting the movie tremendously as it has way too much energy and way too many characters in it, but Meet the Robinsons is otherwise a very solid, underrated Disney film with an animation that is a big improvement over their last effort, one great song, very good main characters and a superb “villain” and above all an original, so well crafted and heartfelt story with a surprising amount of wonderful humor in it.

My Rating – 3.5

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Posted in 2000s, 2007, Animated, Comedy, Disney, Family, FILM DECADES, MOVIE REVIEWS, Science Fiction and tagged , , , , , , , , , , .

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