Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

 

Sony Pictures Animation

 

PG

 

Plot Summary: A young man invents a machine that changes water into food.

 

Reason for the Rating: Brief mild language

 

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs is a child's dream. Well, anyone's dream for that matter. Based on a popular children's book by the same name, this is a movie that will get you craving all that junk food you don't regularly eat, and wondering what it would be like if ice-cream really did fall from the sky.

 

Flint Lockwood (Bill Hader) is a lifetime inventor, beginning with the spray-on shoes he created in elementary school. Problem is, they couldn't be taken off. Flint had many other great ideas which never seemed to work out, like the remote control TV, which had legs and could walk to the viewer. Problem was, it would just walk away too. Or the monkey-translator. But, who needs a monkey-translator? And although he tried and tried, like any good inventor, Flint never was successful at inventing anything useful.

 

That is, until the sardine plant shut down, and all there was to eat in his town was sardines. Something had to be done (we can all understand why), so Flint invented a machine that turned water into food. Any kind of food. Cheeseburgers, pizza, ice-cream, fried chicken. You name it, it could make it. Which was great for the people of ChewandSwallow, who ordered all their favorite meals, and even opened restaurants without ceilings.

 

Which is what led to the problem. Overuse of the machine caused not only the food to grow excessively large, but for the "perfect storm" of food to begin raining down on the earth. Thus Flint and his friends were left with figuring out how to shut down the machine before it covers the earth with food.

 

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs is not only a movie that entertains—and it does that well—but it's also a movie that touches on themes such as friendship, gluttony, and family relationships. One of the most touching scenes in the movie is between Flint and his father, Tim, a large man with a very bushy monobrow. Throughout the movie, Flint's father (James Caan) makes attempts to give Flint advice through the use of fishing metaphors. Flint is completely unable to understand what his father is trying to say, until someone places the monkey translator on his dad, and the most beautiful , supportive words comes out of his mouth. Such a powerful way of illustrating the struggle many families have in communicating between generations.

 

You won't want to miss this animated movie. It's funny and touching, meaningful and enjoyable for all in the family elementary age and above.

 

Let’s Talk About It

Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:

 

• If it could rain any kind of food, what would you want it to rain?

 

• In the movie, Flint wants the support of his father more than anything. What does, or can, your family do that makes you feel loved? Explain.

 

• Tell about a time when you felt pressured to do something you knew was wrong. What happened?

 

--JW

 

Note: All movie-related graphics in this column are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective movie studios. 

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