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Meet the Robinsons

The Future’s So Bright...

Lewis is a thirteen-year old orphan with a passion for inventing things. One would think Lewis’ creativity and intelligence would draw countless prospective parents to him. If only this was the case. After meeting countless prospective parents and logging more fruitless interviews than a room full of the recently downsized, Lewis (voiced by Daniel Hansen), elects to focus his energies on creating a machine that will help him remember his birth mother and win the science fair in the process. As is usually the case, such fateful decisions open the doors to a remarkable adventure.

It is at the science fair that Lewis suddenly finds himself in the middle of a bizarre plot involving time travel, a nefarious man wearing a bowler hat, and a boy (Wilbur Robinson) who claims to be from the future. This is just the beginning in Meet the Robinsons. In short order, Wilbur has whisked Lewis away to the future with the promise of helping him see his birth mother provide he lends him a hand in fixing the "timestream" continuum. No, there is no mention of a "flux capacitor" or "Marty McFly" in this film.

In short order, Lewis finds himself neck deep in a future that is straight out of Disney’s Tomorrowland. This is not too surprising considering Meet the Robinsons is a Disney production. From people floating around in bubbles to prefabricated skyscrapers that self-construct in a matter of seconds, Disney left nothing to chance in creating a remarkably vivid and beautiful future that seems wonderfully devoid of the threat of global warming, corruption, and WMDs. Oh yes, Meet the Robinsons is an animated film for the kids and is rated "G".

In all seriousness, Meet the Robinsons is a gorgeous film to look at. The beautiful visual experience of the film is only enhanced by "Disney Digital 3D". Granted, not ALL theaters will be equipped with Disney Digital 3D, but this is pretty much the only way to experience a film like Meet the Robinsons (in the same way that 300 should really only be experienced on IMAX).

Independent of the visuals, Meet the Robinsons has a story that is fast paced (frenetic at times) and engages for the most part. The film will certainly entertain most kids, but likely will confuse the younger set as the plot involves jumping back and forth in time and meeting a bizarre and eclectic assemblage of characters (i.e. The Robinsons). However, for adults in the audience there isn’t as much to hold onto.

Unlike Finding Nemo or some of the better animated films released in recent years, Meet the Robinsons is catered exclusively towards children and lacks the subtext, double entendre, or in-jokes that these films possess. This doesn’t make Meet the Robinsons a bad film, but does limit the appeal of the film somewhat. If Pixar had been a bit more involved in this production, you’d probably be looking at a more tongue in cheek production.

But, Meet the Robinsons is a beautiful film to look at that offers a story that is engaging enough and manages to send a positive and inspiring message. As Lewis learns during his adventure, life is largely about moving forward and failures often provide the catalyst for success in the future. This is a message that should resonate for children and adults.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars