June 19, 2016

Cheapskate Film Festival Welcome: MR PEABODY & SHERMAN

Greetings! Welcome to this blog's third annual Cheapskate Film Festival - a series of blog reviews of movies acquired via the Chicago Public Library or discount stores. (This year's docket includes one film acquired via a discounted Google Play rental, and another purchased at Dollar Tree). Each review will provide a link for online viewing (via this blog's Amazon affiliate program), as well as (when possible) a DVD for purchase.

It's ironic that I'm starting on Father's Day, because Mr. Peabody & Sherman - based on the classic Jay Ward animated series of shorts  - makes a wonderful, heartwarming Father's Day view.

And make no mistake about it - this is definitely a family-oriented film that really is fun for all ages. Mr. Peabody & Sherman starts with a more developed backstory to the relationship between Mr. Peabody & Sherman - a dog whose "smarter than your average dog" decides that he wants to be less alone, and so he adopts a boy. Although he discourages Sherman calling him "Dad", it's very clear how much Peabody cares for the young boy.

Of course, the WABAC machine makes its appearance in a very nice, makes-a-lot-of-sense 21st century way. Sherman's attempts to be "normal" in school results in a conflict with a classmates, which leads to an attempt for both families to reconcile....and the time travel shenanigans ensue.

Time travel is always a tricky concept for most films....but Mr. Peabody & Sherman manages to negotiate the paradoxes with a very articulate script with some genuinely funny scenes. It manages to balance classic Jay Ward-style satire with a very solid emotional core. In short, there isn't a false note in Mr. Peabody & Sherman....

...if you're one of those "purists" about things like Mr. Peabody & Sherman, you probably won't enjoy this movie, and that's fine. It's not meant for you.

It is, however, meant for anyone with a heart, and is enjoyable. A must-watch.

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