If there was ever a movie in recent times that was able to appeal to both the adults and the kids in the room it is The Mitchells Vs. The Machines. This film is the perfect mix of action, comedy, tender moments and teachable lessons. I delve further into the film in my no-spoilers, parent review where I'm sharing my thoughts on the plot, the language, and the peril in The Mitchells Vs. The Machines.
Disclaimer: I was provided early access to The Mitchells vs. The Machines for review purposes. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
The Mitchells Vs. The Machines | A No-Spoilers, Parent Review
The Mitchells Vs. The Machines | Movie Synopsis
From the humans who brought you the Academy Award-winning Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse and The LEGO Movie comes The Mitchells vs. The Machines, an animated action-comedy about an ordinary family who find themselves in the middle of their biggest family challenge yet…saving the world from the robot apocalypse.
No big deal, right? It all starts when creative outsider Katie Mitchell is accepted into the film school of her dreams and is eager to leave home and find “her people,” when her nature-loving dad insists on having the whole family drive her to school and bond during one last totally-not-awkward-or-forced road trip. But just when the trip can’t get any worse, the family suddenly finds itself in the middle of the robot uprising!
Everything from smart phones, to roombas, to evil Furbys are employed to capture every human on the planet. Now it’s up to the Mitchells, including upbeat mom Linda, quirky little brother Aaron, their squishy pug, Monchi, and two friendly, but simple-minded robots to save humanity.
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The Mitchells Vs. The Machines | Review
Katie is headed for college and as a last ditch effort to connect, Rick makes the decision to cancel her travel plans and declares that the entire family is hitting the road for an old-fashion road trip.
While on the road the Mitchells encounter robots that have been programed to collect every last human and place them in individualized, Wall-E-like pods.
It is up to the family of 4 (er, 5 counting the awesome and ever so handsome in a tux pup, Monchi) to destroy the robots and save humanity.
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Katie and her father are constantly at odds as he would rather live a life off the grid and Katie films everything and views the world through her screen.
The plot has enough substance to keep adults engaged but is also light enough and packed with enough gags and laughs so it won't feel too heavy for younger children.
The title of the film is The Mitchells Vs. The Machines so expect a lot of robot vs. human combat.
In one scene, one of our lead characters takes on a fleet of robots and when wires are pulled, an ink-like substance that is dark in color (no doubt meant to mimic blood) is sprayed on their face as the robot, for the lack of a better word - dies.
Speaking of violence, there are multiple times when at least one of our main characters is in peril as they combat the robots.
There are some elements of suspense where the main characters are being chased by robots and where they are hiding from them, waiting for the robots to appear.
At times Katie and Aaron are separated from their parents and that may be stressful for younger children.
The Mitchells Vs. The Machines is rated PG. I'm personally not a real stickler for language when it comes to kids movies, but the phrase "scumbags" is used near the very end of the film and that was a little jarring to hear in an otherwise fairly clean film.
I did hear the words "stupid" and "idiot" earlier on in the film so if you are adverse to words like that it is better that you find out ahead of time that they are used in this film.
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When I first saw a teaser trailer for this film, back when it was titled "Connected", I was excited, it looked very funny and I liked the premise of it.
I thoroughly enjoyed The Mitchells Vs. The Machines. The animation is stellar, there are fun call-backs to pop culture references; 90's babies be on the look out for the return of the Furby.
My kids, of course got a kick out of the family's dog, Monchi with his silly expression, eyes that can't quite focus and Rick's reaction to being licked by him.
But I certainly would not call this film slap-stick and I do not view the comedy as cheap.
There are a lot of wonderful takeaways from this film. The element of loving your family for who they are and understanding different points of view are big ones. Appreciating your time with your loved ones without distractions is another lesson learned.
A more subtle yet certainly important lesson is to not compare yourself to others, their highlight reels do not show their entire picture, this is an important lesson for the adults in the room as well as the kids in our social media driven world.
Age recommendation for The Mitchells Vs. The Machines: 5+
Honestly, I watched this film with my kids who are younger than 5 and while they didn't grasp all of the messages about technology taking over and what it means to leave for college they laughed A LOT. If your children have seen The Incredibles and/or The Incredibles 2 they can certainly watch The Mitchells Vs. The Machines.
This film has action, this film has heart, and this film has a lot of laughs! The Mitchells Vs. The Machines premieres on Netflix April 30th and will be an instant hit with your family!