The LEGO Movie’s Hidden Meaning – Earthling Cinema


Greetings, and welcome to Earthling
Cinema. I am your host, Garyx Wormuloid. This week’s artifact is
The Lego Movie, based on the tiny choking hazards that humans used to
train their army of childarchitects. The film tells the story of yellow humanoid creature Emmet Brickowski, a construction worker who is rather unpopular despite having the voice
of a charismatic and bankable leading man. One day, Emmet sees a cute
girl, which naturally leads him to fall down a big hole. He gets a
doohickey stuck to his back. But fortunately it’s the famed Piece of
Resistance, so now everyone wants to hang out with him. During this chillsesh, Emmet learns that President Business plans to
freeze the world with a weapon called the Kragle, which is smidge
megalomaniacal for a government official. The cute girl, whose
named is Wyldstyle with two Y’s because humans were the worst,
returns to save Emmet with some fancy punches. She takes him to meet Vitruvius, who is known to locate certain things from time to time. They believe Emmet is the One. I mean the Boy Who Lived,
I mean the Special. They visit one of my recurring
nightmares to meet with the Master Builders, who don’t need instruction manuals,
but could use an etiquette lesson or two. The cops follow them there and
destroy the place, so Emmet gallantly hides in a couch, then
even more gallantly leads an attack on President Business’ headquarters. Let’s hope there’s an elevator. Doesn’t matter, because President
Business immediately defeats everyone and sentences them to join
a thinktank. Vitruvius tells Emmet he made up the prophecy about the
Special, so Emmet jumps out a window As luck would have it, he falls right into a wormhole and awakens
in another dimension, where it is revealed that he and all his
friends are toys in some kind of “toy story.” Turns out the larger conflict
is between the kid from The Wonder Years and his rule-crazy father,
actor-slash-entrepreneur Will Ferrell Williams. They have a nice little heart
to heart about easing up on the Krazy Glue, then everyone has a good cry
and we all go home to call our parents. The Lego Movie may be fashioned as a movie for children and brandwhores,
but it’s actually a satirical jab at the 21st century American
political, economic, and social landscape. President Business is the president,
as one half of his name suggests, but the other half suggests
he’s all about the bottle line. This juxtaposition satirizes
the effect money has over politics, and the increasingly blurred line
— you know you want it — between corporate and
political power. In a prime example of crony capitalism, all media,
business, government, and interpersonal interactions are
controlled by a single corporation. The Octan Energy Corp is a sly
reference to the behemoths that controlled life on Earth:
Google Plus, Bing, and, of course, Tidal high-fidelity, lossless laundry
detergent. President Business is a corporate despot and wants to maintain the
status quo by gluing everyone in place something I’ve considered
with my children on more than one occasion He uses his control of
the economy to subjugate his citizens, even using a coin as an
actual weapon. The proletariat is subdued
into silence and complacency with the allure of Taco Tuesday, proving once and for all that
humans were powerless to resist alliteration. Citizens are also dulled into submission
submission by watching, “Where Are My Pants”, a show
that pokes fun at an era of mindless television, not to
mention its cheap, short-form, internet-only facsimiles.
And if that wasn’t enough to take television down a peg, the film
also includes numerous literary allusions. An “I’ve got my eye on
you” poster and surveillance camera call to mind George Orwell’s
1984 classic, 1984. Cloud Cuckoo Land is a reference to a play by
Aristophanes called “The Birds,” featuring a chaotic realm of the
same name. The name “Vitruvius” is a reference to a Roman author who wrote a ten volume work on architecture, which later inspired Da Vinci
to create his famous “Vitruvian Guy,” The film also features some bizarre
existential undertones. After his death trip into oblivion,
Emmet enters a heightened reality where he realizes free will is an
illusion, and he is nothing more than a puppet being controlled by
some snot-nosed fleshmonster. When Emmet wiggles off the table, he is
undergoing an existential rebellion, refusing to let anyone
define him — be it his societal overlords, his God, or beloved child star
Fred Savage. Emmet becomes a religious figure,
which is appropriate, given that his name means “truth” in Hebrew.
His entry into the “real world” symbolizes death, so his return is
a Christ-like resurrection. And just like Christ, he ends up
stealing Batman’s girlfriend. Ultimately, The Lego Movie is a
celebration of creativity and individualism over uniformity.
Emmet lives in a society as rigid as the blocks themselves, his
individual will smothered by instructions and a terrifyingly
catchy song. As Emmet eventually learns,
to become the Special, “you must embrace what is special about YOU.” Don’t settle for being just
another cog in some larger machine. Now this may seem like a harsh
indictment of corporations for a glorified two-hour toy commercial, but keep in mind that Earth’s
greatest export was hypocrisy. For Earthling Cinema, Im Garyx Wormuloid. Sweet dreams.

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