Pixels was always going to be a love it or hate it movie. Adam Sandler using the same brand of insulting, semi abusive humour he has been using in films since the 80's. A humour that worked when he was in his twenties, but given the fact he is nearly 50 now it starts to wear thin very fast. A host of the classic retro games we all grew up loving, centipede, pac man, donkey kong to name just a few. The early teaser trailer did the movie no favours making it look rather childish for the audience they were aiming at. With only 5.5 out of 10 on IMDB and 18% on Rotten Tomatoes.
The storyline revolves around a group of kids in the early arcade days playing in a world competition. The footage from which along with a lot of other data was sent into space as a message to seek extraterrestrial life forms. Fast forward to adulthood, the friend who never gamed is now a dorky president the of united states (Kevin James). The second place winner Sam Brenner (Sandler) is now a nerd herd tech support guy with low ambitions in life. Who is so miserable he ends up getting drunk with a woman (Michelle Monaghan) he is setting up tech for and nearly kissing her. Two phone calls later both the woman who happens to be part of the defence team and Sandler are heading to the white house to see footage of a strange attack. Sandler notices it is based on the exact version of the game used in the competition before he is asked to leave. Enter another of the old team (Josh Gad) who has found footage spliced into a late night tv show from aliens speaking of a winner takes all contest for the planet. The aliens thinking the games were a challenge, bringing war upon both planets. Now they send warriors to Earth based on pixel characters from said games.
For the first twenty minutes I admit the only thing I was thinking was I want to punch Sandler in the face for his annoying voice, and the same mannerisms we have seen in every single movie of his. The setting up of the storyline seemed very slow, more about how the characters talked to each other than developing the actual plotline. The nerds daring to insult the soldiers they were meant to be helping to train. I almost wanted the soldiers to shoot at least one of them! I was getting really bored, and thinking of leaving. Until centipede appeared, setting up the classic game I remember playing with my mother as a small child. She was the queen of the game, I was never much good at it. She could always just see the patterns and know where they were all going to go. Then the nerds finally came into play, as the new soldiers destroying the enemy in the world's largest and most deadly computer game ever.
When the storyline does finally warm up the movie is funny, entertaining, and well worth watching. However when i comes out on dvd a lot of you may want to skip the start and begin the film as the main action begins. I think this will do much better on the dvd release then the actual cinema screenings for that fact alone. Sorry guys, good movie but Tron did it way better, as did Last Starfighter.
Waiting for the QBert merchandise to hit stores now!
you can view a trailer by clicking here
Sarah Beth James
first seen on thecinemarks.com