Does the Angry Birds movie teach kids that it’s ok to lose cool?
The all-popular video game based on birds having temper issues finally released its movie avatar this week. Aptly timed with children’s summer vacations, the movie’s feathery, colourful cast in the trailers promised an action-packed, fun movie to be seen before the holidays finally end. Curious to see how the movie has been designed, I tagged along with my son to watch it.
The movie opens well. Red, a bird with unusually thick eyebrows who lives on an island full of flightless birds, has limited patience and gets sent to an anger management camp for getting into trouble. I smiled under my 3D glasses, thinking that this would be a good film to set examples for my son’s temper tantrums. But soon, the tempo of the animation flick wavers, creating a concocted cocktail of TNT, feathers and revenge. The anger management class is foggy and clearly loses steam. However, the movie has its positives too.
The animation is colourful, bright and the background score is great. The character sketches of the birds are well done and the fluffy baby birds are adorable. Some dialogues are witty, and certain scenes which involve falling down and exclamations bring out chuckles from the kids and adults alike.
Red, the bird, is shown taking revenge almost always, and this made me uncomfortable in my seat as a mom. The film does try to show that flying tempers are not cool, but does not broach the subject later as it progresses, making me feel that the plot is confused. There are many clever jokes, but they’re lost in the frenzy of the road leading to the climax. Unlike other animation movies like Kung Fu Panda or even Jungle Book, there isn’t much of a takeaway.
But, since this is more of a children’s movie, I asked a kid, in this case my son, for his views, so here is a kiddie version of the review:
“The movie was funny and the birds are good-looking. But they shouldn’t always be angry. They should be a mix of angry and happy.”
So in the end, I was thankful the movie didn’t rub my child in the wrong way. So if you’re looking for 90 minutes of colourful screen-time to keep your children occupied, take them to watch Angry Birds, the movie. Just don’t expect to flutter out with deep message or learning on anger management or anything else.
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