General Review: The Emoji Movie

Hello, Spongey here.

Well, here we are. The review you’ll all been waiting for. Heck, it’s the one I’ve been waiting for. When it comes to the animated films of fear, non have gathered as much infamy as this.

It was infamous when it was announced the and trailers/clips/concepts, haven’t stopped the hate I’ve gone through phases with my feelings on it. At first I was as baffled and angry as everyone else.

But as time has gone on, I’ve gotten waaay more angry at the people complaining about it. Yes, really. It’s less to do with me thinking it’ll be good but mostly because people are goiing so damn far.

For one, people are reacting like this is the first and only time Hollywood has chased in some random popular trend. We lived through many decades of stuff like the Rubix Cube Cartoon. Yes, that actually happened.

Yeah, we’ve mostly moved past that kind of thing but we still had Battleship and The Angry Birds Movie. This is nothing new. And sometimes it totally works like with The LEGO Movie.

I know that’s a common excuse but shut up. Then there’s people harshly bashing this before it comes out (oh yay we’re on this topic again) and going as far to say as this will make Sony shut down or whatever and ruin animation forever.

Okay Chicken Little, calm the heck down. Dreamworks survived Shark Tale and later flops, and Disney survived…well, Chicken Little and Home on the Range. Heck, going back to the 80’s, The Black Cauldron lost to the Care Bears movie.

Yes. Did Disney pack it in start ripping people off yet? Nope, instead they made The Little Mermaid. Trust me, one bomb/bad movie won’t ruin a studio, all of the medium. People are really being a drama queen here.

I wasn’t exactly looking forward to it, especially it not being screened for critics until like the last minute, but I was open to see how this would turn. As of writing of, 12 reviews are on but I want to ignore everything and give this a chance.

The director’s only directing credit is Lilo and Stitch 2, which I liked. Outside of that, just small work on other things. He’s one of the writers along with 1 guy who has done little of note, and one who has Nacho Libre and episodes of Nick;s School or Rock.

Okay then.

Now that this is finally upon this, will it be worthy of a smile-y Emoji, or a Meh Emoji? Time to see.

This, is The Emoji Movie

Three Notes:

1. From now on…i am ditching the grade system, instead I am using my word ratings (Great, Good, Average, Meh, Bed). I feel it’s better and I have an easier time picking from those than the letter grades. This applies to both Scene by Scene and General reviews. I hope you’re all cool with this change

2. There was a Hotel Transylvania short before it called Puppy. It was decent. Nothing great but for a short, it was fun. It also had an actually funny piss joke so there’s that.

3. This will be in the same style as the Cars 3 one rather than breaking it down. I do have stuff to say on those but in this case I think just want my quick and dirty thoughts. We’ll be back to normal next time, hopefully.

Okay, here it is

In the world of a phone, Gene is a Meh Emoji who actually feels other emotions. He screws up so bad on his first day that the head emoji person wants him deleted so he runs away with his new friend to turn himself into a Meh for good.

Well, here we are. I’ve seen it and I am ready to give my thoughts. Of all the Emoji’s in the film, that one sums up how I feel is….Meh.

Yeah, if you know me and how I react to certain movies, this may not actually be a surprise. But just know I am NOT saying this to go against the grain. There’s been hated movies I also hate like Norm of the North or Hoodwinked 2.

This is actually how I feel. This movie is honestly exactly what you would expect from the ads: Very…eh. But there’s more to it than that. I will say off the bat that the animation is good. It’s not exactly better than most big budget animated flicks, but it’s colorful and the characters move like that they should.

There could have been more to it but they plays into the rest of the film. The this with this movie is that upon watching it, I actually saw all the potential had to be good…but it mostly wasted it, only showing hints of something better.

As cliché as the main concept is, the idea that you can be more than what society you should be is a good one and they could go deeper with it. I’ll say that the first Act was the best part as it does have the better moments.

I kinda like the small bits with Gene talking about how he wants to fit in and how he has a hard time being Meh. They perhaps could have explored what all this really means and touch on other things.

Instead, it’s more or less what you would expect. The story itself hits on all the beats you expect from this kinda tale and once the adventure begins it doesn’t go much deeper. That on it’s own is okay, but there’s a lot of other elements it barely does anything with.

I like some of the ideas here, like how the parents go after him themselves instead of just staying behind like most movies would do but their subplots only has like two scenes to it and it involves that split up cliché I love so much.

Yeah, they do it with them but not with the leads. Well, sort of. There’s a twist with one character I not only saw coming, but they barely go into. They only pay lip service to how they really feel about it, they just kinda move and don’t do a whole that.

The whole movie like this. There’s many chances it has to do something with itself. It could have been a commentary on how everyone is glued to their phone or whatever, but there’s only a couple jokes that reference that.

Sure, there’s bit about how Gene prefers one real friend to a bunch of fake ones but that’s about it. When I was watching it, I had all these better ideas to flesh things out.

Like, how about go into the underlining tragedy of having to only have one emotion? You could that without getting mark, maybe have his parents be unable to be proud of his son of anything like that because they have to Meh.

Hey, I’m just spit balling here. Gotta give this movie credit for showing me you CAN do something with this idea…they just simply don’t, On the more positive side, there were not too many awful jokes.

There were some groaners, but I’ve seen less funny films. And I even laughed a few times, mostly at the start with some of the sight gags. The laughs did dry up as the film went on. But I will give them credit for at least trying to balance story and comedy.

It doesn’t work the best due to the flaws but they did try. Which is more than I can say for something like Spark: a Space tail. Yeah, I watched it and it’s way worse than this and Rock Dog.

Patrick Stewart was also in that, by the way.

As far as the characters go, since the writing doesn’t explore it’s concepts, it doesn’t explore them too much either. They are mostly as simple as their base emotion is. Gene is one of the better ones as TJ Miller actually does a good job balancing his emotions.

The parents can be fun too but like everyone else, there really is not a whole to them. One example is Jailrbreak, the tough female one voiced by Anna Farris. That’s all there really is to her. They try to go deeper but they hardly do much.

They do a cliché romance plot complete with misunderstanding. I’ve seen worse but this was so gosh darn forced. It’s another movie that tries just a tad too hard to have a “Strong Female Character”, you know?

The villain voiced by Maya Rudploh is…there. She just appears sometimes to remind us she exists. I know due to the story she can’t be in it a ton but come on. She has no motivation, Gene is malfunctioning so she wants him dead.

That’s really all there is to it. I’m not expecting anything deep, but the villain is pretty weak despite the idea of the villain being a big Smiley being a good one. The worst has to be Hi Five voiced by James Corden.

He’s a typical unfunny comic relief who just got on my serves. Like everything else, I’ve seen it done worse but he was still mostly annoying to me and isn’t exactly that interesting.

Oh and there’s not exactly much focus on the kid, voiced by Jake T Austin (Because of course Disney Channel leaked into this). His story is as basic as you can get. He’s just there. I will however take this over focusing way more on the outside stuff than they needed to.

Cough Osmosis Jones Cough.

Oh and Poop does nothing. He’s got some lines but that’s it. Kind a waste, really. ….Heh, Waste.

Now, is the film as annoyingly panderous as you might think? Eh, not quite. Oh that is there with the apps they go through and a few other references. I was not too surprised when the Whip Nae Nae song popped up when they went to Spotify.

But to be honest, it’s no worse than most movies of this type. It’s only more noticeable because it takes place inside a phone. I don’t know, it didn’t feel quite as insulting as I expected. Maybe my expectations were just low or I even kinda like the idea of of an adventure in a phone world.

Overall, The Emoji Movie really is just a typical run of the mill kids flick that happens to have Emoji. Can I see why some would call it bad? Oh yeah since it wastes many changes it has to be creative and interesting to mostly be…Meh.

The story and characters are all what you would expect, with not much to really offer. The jokes are pretty hit or miss and it just feels like either executives or lesser writers watered down a lot of parts.

I can tell there was SOME effort here, due to some nice elements or funny bits. I can tell even the opening this has more effort put into this than Norm of the North or even Spark. Could it being not awful make it worse the “boring is worse” crowd?

I guess but I still film truly is just…Meh. I can say some positive things about it and it did have potential at least more so than I expected. Again, more than so many other films out there. In terms of big budget ones, even something like Shark Tale is worse.

Now that’s a terrible pandering kids film with not much creativity to it.

Once again, this is how I feel. If I actually hated it, would tell to. And trust me, it has it’s bad parts. But aside from Hi Five and some bits, it’s bad parts are more on a writing level. As a viewing experience, I mostly just sat there.

I reacted more than my audience did. Seriously, I barely heard any reactions and there were kids in there. That’s…sad.

At that moment it has about 20 or so Reviews an Rt resulting a…0 percent. It DOES not deserve a 0. And the reviews themselves are not too much better. A few are on my side but a lot of them are drama queens, with one even saying “It’s the end of the world”. Even if it’s satire, it’s odd to have that there. I am sure some make their share of decent points, but I feel a lot of people are just hating on to this extent because they wanted to.

They didn’t give it sense of a chance so they Pooped over it. I mean, I can see it being bad but the worst thing ever? Come on, the concept is the worst thing about but even the execution shows it could have worked.

I don’t know, I feel some people are really taking it too far. I could see people liking it due to certain good aspects. I mean, Chicken Little has it’s fresh reviews for example. So the 0 is just odd to me. Maybe someone will be brave enough to admit they like it, even in a 6/10 way.

I’m not asking anyone to change their minds, just not be such drama queens. I think a lot of the people just haven’t seen any true sellouts. As disappointing as this was, it has more integrity than a few others.

Whatever, we’ll see things pan over time. For now, I’ll just this movie really is very meh. It borders on Average but the wasted chances, bits of bad writing and some of the bad jokes, pull into being weaker.

It wasn’t the worst, but I did not like it. It’s mostly a waste that I wouldn’t quite recommend. If you’re curious, try to pay as little as possible. Just don’t expect anything great or even terrible. Kids…might like it but the fact that kids at my screenings didn’t react much makes me unsure.

It’s pretty much your typical weaker kids flick, that just so happens to star Emoji’s. Not much more, not much less.

Rating: Meh

Yeah, that sums it up. It’s actually amusing that a lot of people seem to think this movie could only be one thing or another given the moral is that you can be more nuanced and just be sad, happy, meh etc. Amusing.

This was a bit of an odd review for me, but whatever, I’m just saying how I feel. Don’t take this as a defense so to speak, it isn’t good but it’s not THAT bad. In terms of this year’s animated films, it’s better than Spark and even Rock Dog but weaker than the rest.

Once again, it’s a Meh. ANYWAY, next time it’s more animation as we go Nuts….again.

See ya


About Spongey444

I'm 20 and I'm a slightly below average man who can barely spell. I mostly spend my time watching TV and movies, hence why i ended doing a blog all about those things. I tend to have weird tastes, but I like think I'm just fair on things.
This entry was posted in Animation, General Reviews, So Bad It's Horrible Reviews. Bookmark the permalink.

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