Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs Phil Lord and Christopher Miller

Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs Phil Lord and Christopher Miller
A new twist on the term "playing with your food," latest family film Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs — based extremely loosely on the 1978 book of the same name — follows amateur inventor Flint Lockwood (voiced by Bill Hader) in his quest for infamy, inspiration striking once his island home of Swallow Falls hits hard times. The area's once-booming sardine business fails after the rest of the world realizes these tiny fish are actually kind of gross, and with nothing to draw tourists, residents are forced to eat only the slimy little sea-things. Lockwood ingeniously creates a machine that converts water into food. But during a test-run, the machine is accidentally shot into the atmosphere, turning rain clouds into meals. Chow begins to fall from the sky, satisfying Swallow Falls' hunger ,and with coverage from a television weather station, a unique tourist attraction is created, thereby saving the island. However, as the machine is overtaxed, trouble ensues and Lockwood's invention quickly threatens not only Swallow Falls but the entire planet. At that, Cloudy works, but barely. While the plot is interesting, the presentation reeks of a typical format: namesake but not great cartoon actors (Anna Farris as the reporter, James Caan as Flint's father), lame adults-only insider gags and occasional potty humour. Boasting a second DVD of extras is a bit much, given that only the food fight game and sing-along tune are repeatedly amusing, while a commentary with Hader and featurettes on the voices behind the film/its making are barely engaging on the first run. This doesn't include forgettable fillers such as Miranda Cosgrove's "Raining Sunshine" and its own behind-the-scenes bit, or yawn-inducing footage of early development scenes. Still, with its fun, food-y atmosphere and modest downplaying of the obligatory moral ending, Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs is worthwhile viewing for families with ample free time and a penchant for comestible comedy. (Sony)