Reviewed by: Maggie Hays
|Featuring:||Brendan Fraser … Scorch Supernova (voice)
Rob Corddry … Gary Supernova (voice)
Ricky Gervais … Mr. James Bing (voice)
Jessica Alba … Lena Thackleman (voice)
Sarah Jessica Parker … Kira Supernova (voice)
Steve Zahn … Hawk (voice)
George Lopez … Thurman (voice)
Jane Lynch … Io (voice)
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|Producer:||Blue Yonder Films
Jon Shestack Productions
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The Weinstein Company
“Earth’s greatest secrets are about to break out!”
“Escape From Planet Earth” is directed by Cal Brunker, who worked on “Despicable Me” and “Ice Age: Continental Drift” but his work on “Escape…” is disappointing. I really did want this to be a good movie, so I could rave about it and encourage you to take your kids. But we don’t always get what we want. There was no school the day I attended the showing, so the theater had lots of tots. The film didn’t really hold their interest too well, and there was a lot of talking and squirming. I’m sorry to say many youngsters were bored, and so was I (and I’m a confirmed fan of animated movies!).
You have two blue brothers from the Planet Baab in this movie—the skinny, nerdy smart one, Gary, who is the brains behind rescue missions, and the big hero one, Scorch Supernova, who has the brawn required to be the admired superhero. Together, they make a great team, but end up arguing about the mission to Area 51 on the “dark planet” (Earth). Of course, they both end up on Earth, amid other aliens being persecuted by Earthling bad guys, and what follows for the brothers is a variety of predicaments that quickly develop.
The Pros—It’s very nice to sit through a movie that doesn’t toss an “F” bomb in your lap or throw you any other curse words or crude references to the human anatomy and bodily functions. That is a plus that this film has going for it, as do other kid-friendly animated movies.
Also, there are no scantily-clad animated women sashaying around with hips rotating suggestively, such as Jessica in “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” and Mirage in “The Incredibles”.
There aren’t a lot of suggestive comments that go over kids’ heads, but adults are supposed to think hilarious, like so many animated movies pander to audiences, such as in the crude “Shrek” movies. In “Escape”, however, there is one quick reference as a male character dons a poufy feminine-like wig, and another character says “Ah… don’t ask, don’t tell,” alluding to gays in the military, of course. Another quick scene shows a spacesuit that appears to be alive in an embrace and grabs the behind of one of the main characters. I do not appreciate a scene like that displayed before the little kids in the audience, and, as an adult, I think it’s crude, not funny.
The Con’s—What bothers me about this movie is the competition between the brothers, and the unkind things they say to each other in anger. Instead, I would think parents would want their children to learn to “be kind to each other, and tenderhearted” (Eph. 4:32).
Another thing that I think is a terrible example to kids is that the movie shows a food fight. This is an especially sore spot with me, I’ve seen too many pictures of swollen bellies of starving children in undeveloped countries. Hurling precious food at one another is wrong, and children don’t need to see this in a movie.
The main thing that bothered me about the film, and that I think you need to know—the prevalent attitude that permeates this story is that the aliens are good, but the humans are dimwitted and dumb. Granted, not all humans are Einsteins, but not all eat paste, either. The film overdoes this disdain for people. Are we not made in the image of God? Did not the Savior pay the ultimate price, that we humans might have salvation? Portraying all humans as mere dimwits, diminishes us all. It raises society as a whole to uplift the moral, wise and good among us and teach our children to aspire to be like them. In this movie, it’s the blue aliens from a nonexistent planet that are upheld as such, while Earth’s humans are repeatedly denigrated.
During the show, a couple of times, the kids around me laughed out loud—always when someone was hit in the face with a shovel or some such similar event. The movie itself is billed as “hilarious”. I would only submit that in some places it’s mildly amusing. If you’re wondering if it’s appropriate for the kids, I would say there’s nothing huge that would upset you, but I predict that adults will be bored. The “PG” rating is accurate, due to a couple of scary aliens, and some fighting sequences.
Violence: Heavy / Profanity: None / Sex/Nudity: Moderate
What does the Bible say about intelligent life on other planets? Answer
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.