August 23, 2015 § Leave a comment
So after I’m done with what might be the worst movie to come out this year (according to the me and the general public), let’s look at what might be the second worst movie to come out this year… or third when The Ridiculous Six hits Netflix! Yeah, I’m recapping and ranting on Pixels. Now given the last time I took on a Adam Sandler vehicle and hating it big time, I have little expectations on this even after I saw the trailer. Pixels was based on the short movie of the same name that hits the internet back in 2010 and gained positive response so with Adam and Chris Columbus deciding to extend the short movie into feature-length, the question is does it work at the critical and box office masses? Well…
Yeah, we might have another Adam Sandler movie that sweeped the Razzies (that is unless Fantastic Four beat them to it). Now the reason is not just because Adam starred in it (or Kevin James or Josh Gad as well) but it’s said to ruin nostalgia more than any movie that’s released or it has its sexist views on woman portrayed in this movie (ie. Peter Dinklage wants a threesome with Serena Williams and Martha Stewart) to being the worst thing to happen to video games since Bubsy 3D. There’s many reasons really and after the movie hits, further controversy follows with DMCA takedowns on anything with “Pixels” in the title (even to ones that’s nothing to do with the movie) including their own theatrical trailer.
I could go on endlessly but I got to talk about what happens in the movie instead. In 1982, Sam Brenner (Anthony Ippolito) enters an arcade game world championship as he fought against Eddie Plant (Andrew Bambridge) for multiple games. All while an MC (Dan Ackroyd) tells that the championship will be part of a time capsule sent to space. Eddie wins Donkey Kong while Sam is in second place, as witnessed by his best friend Will Cooper (Jared Riley) and their new friend Ludlow Lamonsoff (Jacob Shinder) who is in love of Lady Lisa of Dojo Quest arcade game. Flash forward to this year as Sam (now played by Adam Sandler) works for a software-installing company called “Nerd Brigade” while his buddy Will (now played by Kevin James) is the president of the united states.
After a strange attack on Guam, Will not only called Sam but the White House called Sam’s latest customer (and Lieutenant Colonel) Violet Van Patten (Michelle Monaghan) about the attack. Will show Sam the attack on video and thinks it’s like Galaga. Nothing much happens after Sam tries to convince the chief of staff until Sam finds Ludlow (now played by Josh Gad) hiding in the truck and tries to convince Sam that it’s the beginning of a video game alien invasion. And then Taj Mahal gets attack by Arkanoid paddles. So Sam and Ludlow are brought in to help train soldiers to defeat those aliens by playing video games.
The next point of attack is in Hyde Park in London (should I call this another Sandler vacation movie unless it’s filmed somewhere in America?) and Sam, Ludlow and the soldiers (including one played by Sean Bean) fought attack Centipede and wins this part of the battle all while an old lady in London got the Duck Hunt dog as her pet. After that, the next place to attack is the big apple but they in need of help so Eddie (now played by Peter Dinklage) joins in the action after serving a sentence in prison… and Toru Iwatani (Denis Akiyama), the creator of Pac-Man also is involved which you know where this is going.
After they are facing Pac-Man, they thought the game was over while gaining Q*bert as their trophy and ally but after going to the ball (with Josh Gad ruining Tears For Fears), it’s not over and Washington is now the next point of attack so Eddie runs away because he’s a cheater and it’s up to Sam, Will, Ludlow and Violet to fight every known video game character. Oh, and Violet’s son Matty (Matt Lintz) got kidnapped by aliens during the ball which is the reason why Violet finally joins in the action. As Sam, Will, Violet and Q*Bert gone inside the space ship, Ludlow (along with Lady Lisa, played by Ashley Benson) fights against other aliens and Eddie reappeared to help him out.
The three are now attempting to save Matt (and two other captives) in a game of Donkey Kong and they win the game all while video game aliens including Lady Lisa disappeared (except the trophy prizes like Q*Bert). With Ludlow being saddened by her disappearance, Q*Bert becomes Lady Lisa and Ludlow is happy, Sam and Violet are together and Eddie gets his threesome dream. The movie ends with Ludlow being a father of multiple Q*Bert babies. Well, I hate to say it but even though this movie is not good, it’s not as worst than That’s My Boy.
It is slightly watchable in my opinion but only towards the ones who is not into video games or didn’t grow up in 1980s point of time (which btw, for a movie about a time capsule sent to space in 1982, it has anachronisms involved like Max Headroom for example). I can honestly see the issues surrounding this like the fact that it’s another Sandler vehicle where it contains the usual product placements, Happy Madison-style humor and even the portrayal of woman in this. I already brought up Peter’s character’s fantasy but there’s also the fact that it’s another movie where Adam plays a character who gets an attractive female character. Also, the fact that Josh’s character having a very famous video game character transformed into another and used her as a sexualized trophy… I know it’s not Josh’s doing since he’s acting but just in case, fuck you Josh Gad.
Also, it is lazily written at best. I mean, how is this a movie about a lead character who has two friends with one become a President while one of his customers unknowingly works for the Commander-in-Chief until they both went to the White House that well written? Had it been about a President who has no knowledgeable video game history deciding to form a team of old video game players and champions, it would have been something but no, it’s all by dumb coincidence or something. The predictable points like Josh’s character being obsessed with a video game character or how the army generals hugging it out didn’t help either.
It is better to leave that type of product to stuff that knows geek cred like Vin Diesel, Simon Pegg and Felicia Day than the ones claiming to it but Hollywood is hardly gonna listen so despite that, it is just a dumb watchable video game movie starring actors who has little knowledge to video game properties playing characters who know it and nothing else. Do give it a watch if you want but it’s better to stick with either the short film or that Futurama episode that has similar plot if you’re not into Adam’s shenanigans nowadays.