It’s not the first time we’ve seen heroes go against their evil fathers on cinema, but LEGO’s “Ninjago” combines sweet animation visual treats with an awkward yet satisfyingly comedic coming-of-age story.
The movie plays with foolproof archetypes. The celebrated hero, behind his mask is treated as an outsider, an awkward loser who saves his clueless bullies’ asses at the end of the day.
That “loser” transforms into the Green Ninja who leads a secret ninja force that each control an astounding elemental mech. When the force comes together, it thwarts Garmadon’s plans to rule as dictator of the city of Ninjago.
The squad has six members: The Green Ninja (Lloyd), Fire Ninja (Kai), Water Ninja (Nya), Lightning Ninja (Jay), Ice Ninja (Zane) and Earth Ninja (Cole). Each character has its own quirky personality, and learns the value of friendship, trust, and teamwork in their newest mission.
Dave Franco plays the teen Lloyd (or La-loyd, as his father calls him) that longs for paternal love. Lloyd is outcasted by the city folk for being the estranged son of Garmadon, a four-armed tyrant who never seems to give up on his plots to capture the city of Ninjago.
With a light and hilarious tone, LEGO builds up an epic showdown of good versus evil, that will test this fierce but undisciplined team of modern-day ninjas, who must learn to check their egos and pull together to unleash their inner power.
In “Ninjago,” LEGO gives us an Asian-inspired movie that takes on the action-adventure genre yet again. And if you’ve seen a LEGO movie before, it’s real charm is really on how its creators were able to make the brick animation feel like it was captured straight from a kid’s imagination, with every playing piece known by LEGO enthusiasts from all over the globe.
“Ninjago” sure has that signature LEGO slapstick that will have toddlers and adults alike laughing their heads off.