Whenever a new animated feature drops on Netflix, I make a mental note to watch it to review. Then, inevitably, I forget and months go by before I get around to watching it. Thankfully I had heard such high praise for this movie, I actually remembered to watch it! And man, what a great time!
“The Mitchells vs. The Machines” follows the Mitchell family on the day their daughter Katie (voiced by Abbi Jacobson of Broad City) is jet-setting off to college. She’s incredibly excited because her whole life, she has felt like no one gets her. She’s an artist and a filmmaker and everyone thought she was weird (boy, can I relate). When she gets accepted to a film school in California, she instantly has a group of (virtual) friends ready and waiting for her arrival. She and her dad Rick (voiced by Danny McBride of comedy things galore) continually butt heads because they’re so similar and their current spat threatens to carry on after she leaves. But he has a plan! He cancels her plane ticket and plans a cross-country road trip to take her to college!
Katie is less than pleased.
The Rise of the Machines
Meanwhile, tech guru of PAL and Steve Jobs-proxy Mark Bowman (Eric Andre) is about to make a huge announcement about the latest tech they’re going to release. He created the phone and personal virtual assistant PAL (think Siri, but with a digital face and voiced by Oscar-winner Olivia Coleman) and is ready to launch the next big thing: personal home robots. Since everything has a “smart” chip in it these days, the robots can sync with all your appliances and do everything for you.
Guess what happens next.
Yep! Robot apocalypse! The Mitchells stop off at a roadside dinosaur attraction when everything goes crazy and they must work together to make it out of the mess in one piece. Featuring the voice talents of Maya Rudolph, Beck Bennett, Fred Armisen, Conan O’Brian, Chrissy Tiegan and John Legend, this film is a wild ride of action, comedy, and good ol’ family feels. They also have a family dog named Monchi, a derpy, chunky pug, who is a laugh-riot. Who doesn’t love an animal sidekick!
Animation at its best
The art design is really fun, the soundtrack is great, and all the performances are top-notch. The producers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller brought us “The Lego Movie”, “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part”, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” and many, many more. I’m no expert, but these guys seem to know what they’re doing.
I haven’t laughed this hard at a movie in a long time, and I’ve watched over 400 since last March (#PandemicUnemployment). If you were (or are) a weird kid in search of your tribe, this movie will hit you right in the gut and if you are/were a parent trying to figure out how to connect with your kids, this is the movie for you. And Maya Rudolph absolutely steals the show. What a Super Mom.
I can’t rave about this enough. I want to watch it again right now! Check out “The Mitchells vs. The Machines” now streaming on Netflix.
Rating: 5 out of 5 Snack Packs
Lincoln L. Hayes is an actor and writer living in NYC. Production has begun on new episodes of his webseries and podcast SESSION ZERO, so please follow his social media for updates or visit his website www.lincolnlhayes.com for more info.