It is July 2021, and in Finland we are going through one of the hottest weather streaks on record. Right now I am on vacation, which I am enjoying in my bedroom because I have a small air-conditioning system in here. Why do people retire to places like Florida and Dubai? What do they do there? Hot weather is bad not only for the temperature-challenged but also for people who suffer badly from hayfever, as I do.
In order to entertain myself I have watched a few movies on Netflix (and a lot of tennis videos on YouTube). Around ten years ago the Finnish game company Rovio had a major hit with Angry Birds, and as a follow-up they produced two animated movies. Both are available on Netflix. I love cartoons and animations so I thought I would watch them while suffering in the heat in front of my computer screen in my bedroom. My expectations were modest because I thought they would be aimed squarely at children. However, both are absolutely hilarious. It is very fast-paced, a bit like Tom and Jerry. You never know what the next joke is going to be about. The main character, Red, has so many great lines, and the narration is very good.
The two Angry Birds movies
The second movie has one of the funniest scenes I have ever seen. I have watched it quite a few times and I laugh hysterically every time. It needs a bit of an introduction but I think it is enough to say that some birds and animals, inside an eagle costume, are trying to make their way into a secure area guarded by eagles.
There is also a break dance set to Axel F, as well as a lot of other famous music tracks (Michael Jackson’s I’m Bad is used in the first movie). Some people say you need to know the game in order to appreciate the movies but I don’t think that is necessary. You just need to like animated movies.
A Bad Review(er)
Since I completely missed the launch, and I really liked both movies, I was wondering what sort of publicity it was getting at the time. So here is a review from the British newspaper The Guardian, which I subscribe to, with the title Charmless Chaos. It is very short and it justifies the cliche “I can’t believe you get paid to write this”. I will name and shame the reviewer, Wendy Ide, who is as ignorant of the genre as an opera reviewer who does not like opera. Congratulations on landing a job you are completely unqualified for.