Do you like cute stuff? Funny stuff? Orphan stuff? Dinosaur stuff? YEAH! ME FUCKING TOO! I also like time travel, jaded babies, incompetent villains, frogs, science (the non-boring kind), and futures both utopian and dystopian. Oh, and Tom Selleck’s mustache (the most!).
WELL. Apparently those crazy Imagineers over at Disney have been peeking at my cinematic wish list, because all of a sudden it’s like SOMEBODY dropped a hilarious-orphan-dinosaur-future-frog-bomb RIGHT ON TOM SELLECK’S SILKY UPPER LIP. And they call it Meet the Robinsons.
I love it.
Lewis (voiced by Jordan Fry) is a 12-year-old boy genius who lives in an orphanage with his world-weary roommate, Michael “Goob” Yagoobian (funny like only a tiny, sleepy, emotionally crippled child can be).
After screwing up his 124th adoption interview, Lewis invents a machine to scan his own memory and track down his real mother. Enter the mysterious Bowler Hat Man (hapless man, diabolical hat), all spindly and toothy, determined to steal the machine; and Wilbur Robinson, boy of the future, determined to stop him. The kids head to the future, a dazzling Technicolor land of topiaries, bubbles, and robots, where Lewis does the titular thing, everyone is hilarious, and history is saved (“It’s been a long hard day filled with emotional turmoil and dinosaur fights”).
Meet the Robinsons is a bit overexcited about its own creative sprawl, but is that really such a crime? When gags flounder (which some do), the story blazes past them with wit and visual excitement and minimal emotional pap. It’s even kind of inspirational without being a dick about it (the lesson is a sensible combination of: “From failing, you learn; from success, not so much,” and “Keep moving forward”).
But why are we still even talking about this? I assume I had you at Tom Selleck’s fucking mustache.