Ever wondered what would happen if the wholesomeness of LEGO met the debauchery of Grand Theft Auto? Well thanks to digital media wizards Nukazooka you can wonder no more! The Lego Car Blog Elves are watching this madness on loop…
It’s been three years since The LEGO Movie became the surprise hit of the box office. Rapturous reviews (including here at The Lego Car Blog), a Rotten Tomatoes score of 96%, nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe, and winner of the BAFTA for Best Animated Film, the animated adventure shook up a cinematic genre that was starting to look a little tired.
Fast forward to 2017 and LEGO, DC and Warner Bros. are hoping to repeat the huge success of the original with the spin-off we all hoped for. Yes, LEGO Batman has got his very own movie.
Reprising his role as the Very Very Dark Grey Knight, Will Arnett is joined by an all-star cast including Zach Galifianakis as an inspired Joker, Michael Cera as Nightwing, and the brilliant Ralph Fiennes as Batman’s long-suffering butler Alfred.
It is Batman of course, who narrates the opening credits… “All important movies start with a black screen…”, Arnett growls, and The LEGO Batman Movie duly does.
A frenetic opening returns movie-goers to the colour and vibrancy that only a world built from LEGO bricks can provide. The animation is absolutely first class, and there are some brilliant adult-friendly sight gags and pop-culture references throughout, including a nod to every Batman movie ever made (especially the bad ones) and a long-running joke about the pointlessness of many of DC’s superheroes (kudos to DC for the self depreciation!).
The story itself is pretty engaging, probably on par with even some of the better Batman movies – whilst some of the worse ones would be glad to trade their plot for this one – and it employs a wealth of cameos and small-part characters to keep the amusement coming.
Our favourites though, are the two leads. Arnett’s mini-figure Batman we know and love from the original LEGO Movie, and Zach Galifianakis’ Joker is no doubt his equal, being both brilliantly comedic and delightfully scary in equal measure. Our warmth for these characters doesn’t extend to Nightwing though, who is just as annoying as he is in the trailers, and is surely the Scrappy Do of the entire Batman franchise. To that end at least, Michael Cera has nailed it.
The Lego Batman Movie is a wonderfully self-aware addition to the Batman franchise, poking fun and reverence at the comic’s history, whilst also managing to continue the LEGO Movie saga.
However, the film is not quite as fresh or clever as The LEGO Movie of 2014. Whilst a very good family-friendly animated movie, and no doubt enhanced by the inclusion of the LEGO universe, The Lego Batman Movie could ultimately have been animated in any number of ways and remained a very good family-friendly adventure. It’s a film made because the box office demanded it, and with The Lego Ninjago Movie on the horizon too, we could be entering a period of diminishing returns.
The Lego Batman Movie is the film that cinema deserves, but not the one it needs right now.
Dominic Toretto had the coolest ride of all the Fast and Furious characters. As long as there were no corners a 1970 Dodge Charger R/T, fitted with huge supercharger, will outrun almost anything. Flickr’s -derjoe- has recreated the iconic car beautifully in miniature. His Town scale version of the R/T was suggested by a reader and you can see the full image via the link above.
This gorgeous Model Team recreation of the famous 1975 Kenworth 900-A from the cult classic ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ has been built by the recently returned Chris Melby. Chris is working on the trailer too, so expect more in the coming weeks. There’s more to see of the superb tractor unit at Chris’ photostream on Flickr – click the link above to get Eastbound and Down.
…Pray that he’s out there somewhere.
Mad Max Fury Road is currently setting movie screens alight, but it all began way back in 1979. Ralph Savelsberg has added the Ford Falcon Interceptor from the film that started it all to his movie cars catalogue. There’s more to see on Flickr – click the link above and Get Mad.
It hasn’t taken long for some of the incredible vehicles from brilliant 2015 film ‘Mad Max: Fury Road‘ to start appearing in Lego form. The first to appear here come from one of our favourite Town-scale builders; Flickr’s _Tyler. There’s lots more to see at his Mad Max photo album, including these epic recreations of vehicles from the latest movie, as well as earlier creations from the first Mad Max movies of the 1980s. Click the link above to witness him.
The surprise movie hit of 2014 was surely the The LEGO Movie, which received both rave reviews and piles of cash at the box office. Such has been its success that The Lego Movie’s sequel, snappily titled ‘The LEGO Movie Sequel’ is already in the works and set for release sometime around 2018.
However production company Warner Brothers is rumoured to want even more from their new franchise, and so everyone’s favourite very very dark grey crimefighter might be getting his very own movie!
The as-yet-untitled LEGO Batman film is expected in around two years’ time, with the fantastic Will Arnett reprising his role as the Dark Knight.
We’ll bring you more on this story once we’ve catapulted a few more Elves into the Warner Brothers’ offices, but for now you can click this link to see what Batman got up to after The Lego Movie ended.
Okay, we admit it, the Elf Riot was our fault. It all started when we promised our pointy-eared workers a night off, watching a DVD. The story was based on a book by the man who wrote James Bond and the film features some explosions and a transforming car. What could go wrong?
The Elves settled down in expectation of seeing something with Megan Fox, fireballs, Megan Fox, Optimus Prime, Megan Fox… Well you get the idea. Dick van Dyke just didn’t cut it. The Elves who made it through the ensuing mutiny and endured 144 minutes of 1960s musical spectacular have been irredeemably scarred.*
Anyhow, relax and feast your eyes on Ralph Savelsberg’s latest creation in his series of vehicles from film and TV. Featuring detachable wings and a brick-built Caractacus Pott, this Lego version of the most expensive theatre prop of all time looks splendid on its vintage, 1970s wheels. Click the link in the text to see more photos of this car, including WIP shots and Ralph’s neat solution to building Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’s long exhaust pipe.
*They’ve started to demand payment in Toot Sweets instead of Smarties.
This radio station was named Kowalski, in honour of the last American hero to whom speed means freedom of the soul. The question is not when’s he gonna stop, but who is gonna stop him.
Ralph Savelsberg pays homage to one of the greatest road movies of all time. See more of Kowalski’s Dodge Challenger here.
The Elves are all very happy this afternoon. One of them returned to TLCB Towers with this, an absolutely wonderful Aston Martin DB5 by Flickr’s ER0L, and we’re so enthralled by it we’re letting them all watch 007 at the wheel in the 1960s film classic Goldfinger.
Er0l’s beautiful recreation of the famous British GT is only seven studs wide, but a more perfect replica of the DB5 we couldn’t imagine. It might be the best Town scale car you’ll see all year. Click the link above to visit Er0l’s photostream (and let him know that a version with Q’s bullet shield and machine guns is what we’re all waiting for!).
One of the defining coming-of-age films of the 1980s, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off told the story of one young man’s quest to have a day of extraordinary leisure. It starred Matthew Broderick, Jennifer Grey, Mia Sara, and even (briefly) Charlie Sheen, but the real star of the movie is of course the gorgeous 1961 Ferrari GT California.
TLCB favourite Ralph Savelsberg (aka Mad Physicist) has recreated the beautiful classic from the film (complete with Ferris figure) in his un-mistakable building style, and you can see all the photos at Ralph’s photostream here.
The Lego Car Blog Elves are spectacularly sulky today. The office went to the cinema to see The LEGO Movie and, sadly, we couldn’t take them.
Don’t feel sorry for the Elves though as it’s entirely of their own making. We’ve been banned from several cinemas and possibly still have an outstanding lawsuit from a particularly disastrous previous cinematic trip, so they’ll just have to wait for the DVD. However, you dear Readers, can go to see The LEGO Movie at the cinema. But should you? Read on to find out!
The LEGO Movie was previewed here last June, and has been in development by Warner Brothers for the past six years. Set in a bustling and beautifully animated LEGO metropolis where ‘Everything is Awesome!’, The LEGO Movie is the tale of one mini-figure’s quest to save the world as he knows it. Emmet Brickowski (voiced by Chris Pratt of ‘The O.C’ and ‘Parks and Recreation’ fame) is an ordinary construction worker following the instructions available for every aspect of life in the city in the vain hope of becoming a ‘somebody’. Success and popularity eludes him until, one day, his life changes forever.
Unbeknownst to Emmet, the World is under threat from the evil Lord Business (voiced by a wonderfully on-form Will Ferrell), whilst a secret society of Master Builders attempts to stop him. Emmet accidentally stumbles across the long-lost ‘Piece of Resistance’, fulfilling the Master Builders’ prophesy of a saviour, and is thrust into the apocalyptic struggle between good and evil.
Mentored by the beautiful Wyldstyle (Elizabeth Banks) and wise Master Builder Vitruvius (Morgan Freeman), Emmet must defeat Lord Business’ plans to create his ‘perfect’ world at the expense of everyone that lives within it. Adults will find the plot faintly Orwellian and actually quite dark, but it’s punctuated with such humour and so many pop-culture references that you may not realise until the end the intelligence that lies within.
The stellar lead cast is backed up by an impressive roster of supporting voice-actors, including a brilliant Liam Neeson as ‘Good Cop/Bad Cop’, Channing Tatum as ‘Superman’, Will Arnett as ‘Batman’ and the delightful Alison Brie as ‘Uni-Kitty’.
The LEGO Movie looks like a stop-motion animation, though it’s really computer animated, and it is at times quite busy. However it’s created in a beautifully bright way that only LEGO as a subject matter could inspire. It’s also available in 3D, but to be honest the movie doesn’t really need it and we suspect it will be just as enjoyable in only two dimensions.
A sort of Toy Story meets The Matrix, The LEGO Movie is a superbly animated film that both children and – more surprisingly – adults will enjoy. It’s also a children’s film that is quite rare in today’s cinema, in that the key message isn’t just aimed at the children viewing it, but perhaps more at their parents in attendance. We certainly hope it’ll give a few LEGO collectors within the online community something worth thinking about. The live-action finale is undoubtedly one of the sweetest movie moments of 2014, especially when you realise who is really the author of the enthralling story just witnessed.
So is ‘Everything Awesome’?
We’d have to say yes. The LEGO Movie might just be the animated movie of the year, and thus gets a TLCB rating of 4 Stars.
The LEGO Movie is in cinemas worldwide now, and success at the Box Office also means we can look out for a sequel following sometime in 2017. We can’t wait!
Steven Spielberg’s incredible 1993 blockbuster Jurassic Park isn’t a particularly car-y movie; most of the few cars that feature are the Ford Explorers used to shuttle tourists around the theme park. These were – being an American SUV built in the early ’90s – utter garbage, but in Jurassic Park livery they suddenly became very cool. So cool that Mercedes decided to sponsor the first Jurassic Park sequel in order to get its new ML-Class SUV in the spotlight.
Back to the Explorer, and it’s ripe for recreating in LEGO; it’s blocky and wonderfully colourful. TLCB regular (and Brothers Brick writer) Ralph Savelsberg has done just this in his usual brilliant studs-up style, and completed the build with the movie’s main characters (well, apart from the dinosaurs). See all the photos at Ralph’s photostream here, whilst we give the Elves a rare afternoon off to watch giant lizards running amok.