REVIEW: ‘Home’

Tim Johnson
Jim Parsons
Steve Martin
Jennifer Lopez
Rated: PG

In the latest Dreamworks animated feature, Jim Parsons lends the voice to the character Oh. Oh is a member of an alien race that is on the run from a intergalactic threat and is trying to find a new home where they will be safe. They end up coming to Earth and decide to make the planet their own. After moving the human population to a single location, the alien race takes over Earth.

Things seem to be going fine until Oh, being the mistake maker that he happens to be, ends up accidentally notifying the threat about where his race is. As he goes on the run from his own people, he meets Tip (Rihanna), a young girl who is searching for her mother. The two end up making an unlikely pair and have to go on adventure to set things right.

Unlike some of Dreamworks’ other recent films, the sequels to “How to Train Your Dragon” and “Kung Fu Panda,” for example, “Home” doesn’t have much going for it. The story, which meanders around for most of the runtime, ends up being entirely predictable and there’s never any real surprises that are thrown out there.

Because of this, the movie ends up feeling longer than it actually is, and that’s not a good thing for a 94 minute flick. On top of that, despite what’s going on, the movie really lacks a sense of urgency around the whole thing. In animation, a medium where you can do so many things, it’s a shame when a film ends up not being exciting.

Probably the biggest flaw of the picture are the characters, especially Oh. I think Jim Parsons is a good actor, yet all he does with the character is play the same person he does in “The Big Bang Theory.” It gets old fast, especially since the film keeps using the same joke, which is the alien race talking in broken English.

The other protagonist, Tip is actually OK in the movie, and Rihanna did fine in her voice acting role. Unfortunately, a few of the good scenes with her were usually ruined by Oh doing something obnoxious.

The animation in the movie left a lot to be desired. It was colorful, sure, but compared to some of the other animated films over the last few years, it doesn’t hold up. Nothing is eye-popping or fascinating to watch, which is too bad considering this is in the sci-fi genre.

Another aspect of the film was the over use of Rihanna music from beginning to end. It’s not like I have an issue with the music itself, however, it was just so noticeable that it takes a viewer out of the movie.

“Home” is a really simple kids film. It might entertain really young children, but it’s not something that is all too memorable for an entire family. It’s a movie that doesn’t really get anything right and can’t hold any weight against some of the other great animated flicks out there. 1 out of 5.

Author: Matthew Liedke

Journalist and film critic in Minnesota. Graduate of Rainy River College and Minnesota State University in Moorhead. Outside of movies I also enjoy sports, craft beers and the occasional video game.

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