Even though it's March, temperatures are still pretty chilly around these parts. What better way to amuse the family than by going to the movies this weekend (like you have every other weekend)? Mr. Peabody & Sherman hits theaters on Friday, and for a couple hours of sheer entertainment, this film will definitely do the trick.
So it's no The Incredibles or The LEGO Movie, but it's colorful, cute, and full of clever puns, which word nerds will certainly appreciate. Even though it lacks some of the off-the-wall, zany, nutty humor for which the original cartoon was so beloved, it makes up for it with the emotional arc, showing how a dog can be a father to a boy even though it's something most believe never should be.
Starring Ty Burrell as Mr. Peabody, Max Charles as Sherman, Ariel Winter as Penny, Stephen Colbert and Leslie Mann as Penny's parents, and Stanley Tucci as Leonardo da Vinci, Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a must-see this weekend for all families with youngsters.
Mr. Peabody is, frankly, a genius and excels at pretty much everything that he does. But he quickly comes to discover that this parenting thing isn't as easy as it looks. He is legally allowed to adopt a human son, Sherman, and they form a loving but stiff relationship. (Example: Sherman tells Mr. Peabody, "I love you," and Mr. Peabody responds, "I have a deep regard for you as well." Poor Sherman.) When Sherman first goes to school, he is bulled by mean-girl Penny, so Mr. Peabody and Penny's parents arrange a dinner meeting. While Sherman attempts to bond with Penny, he shows her the WABAC, a time machine Mr. Peabody built that they use to visit folks like Mahatma Gandhi and George Washington.
Of course, when the kids go back in time, they manage to screw everything up. The plot gets a little convoluted during its final act, but it's important not to think too hard about the metaphysics of it all. Come on, it's about a talking dog adopting a boy, for crying out loud. Lots of this -- the time traveling, the puns -- may go over the wee ones' heads, hence the PG rating, hence leave the wee ones at home. Big kids only.
Anyway, along the way, kids in the audience will get a brief, funny history lesson on ancient Egypt, the Renaissance (featuring Da Vinci), the Trojan War (featuring what seems to be the first frat boy ever, Agamemnon), and the French Revolution. Parents will delight that their children may actually learn a little something, and each era the characters go back to is beautifully designed and animated. Still, the ending gets pretty heavy involving the WABAC destroying the space/time continuum and, essentially, the world, and the end-of-times stuff kind of seems to come out of nowhere -- but you get a lot of funny historical cameos nonetheless.
Kids and adults alike will appreciate the gorgeous animation; those behind the movie made the characters come to life with vibrancy and esprit while seamlessly incorporating the '60s look of the original cartoon. Regardless of the inconsistent plot, it's an entertaining, light movie with a great message for all of us: Families can be full of love no matter what they look like.
Check out the trailer:
Will you take your kids to see Mr. Peabody & Sherman?
Image via DreamWorks