Blu-ray Review: CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS

by: James Wallace
January 4th, 2010

CWACOM Blu

Blu-ray Rating: 7/10

If it is a theatrical review you're looking for, head over HERE to check out what Wilhem thought of CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS.

In a year that saw the release of many a fantastic animated films, CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS seemed to come and go as fast as the McRib's last tour at McDonalds. This is all too unfortunate as the film really is all that and a bag of chips. Luckily, CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS is finally getting the Blu-ray treatment. But viewer beware...this DVD is nacho typical home viewing experience, as the disc comes super-sized with all kinds of great special features!

In this case, if CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS is the pizza, then its supplemental material are all the delicious toppings. Of course, you have all your standard features that are to be expected. There's the informative yet amusing commentary with the film's writers/directors Christopher Miller and Phil Lord along with SNL's Bill Hader (voice of the film's hero Flint Lockwood). The Blu-ray edition also includes a making of featurette, entitled A Recipe for Success: The Making of CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS. In this feature, we are given a look see at the process the animators went through to make the computer generated food look both life-like and lip-smacking good. Who would have ever thought that dropping burgers off buildings and eating all sorts of sweet treats could be deemed "research"? The disc also includes another making of feature entitled Key Ingredients: The Voices of CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS which explores casting the voice talents behind the film, which compiles quite the impressive cast of comedians including Bill Hader, Anna Faris, Andy Samberg. And, of course, who could forget Mr. T? I pity the fool that forgets Mr. T!

For all you film and animation nerds, there's a few helpings of special features that are ripe for your taste spuds. The Extended Scenes give us a good idea of the process of animating a scene, from its framework to its finished product, as we get to see unfinished and unpolished animation in this feature. Furthermore, the Early Development Scenes give us an idea of the pre-visualization process and story boarding of something that is completely generated from camera movement to character movement. The Progression Reels is the most in-depth and interesting in these set of visual FX features, as it gives us a comprehensive look at all that goes into building such a beautifully animated, uniquely styled film like CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS.

And, last but not least, the fun stuff. If all the other features were the meat and potatoes of the disc, then these are the dessert. I am referring to the features Splat Mode! and Flint's Food Fight Game, which give viewers a good idea of the future of special features on something as interactive as Blu-ray technology. Flint's Food Fight Game is a simple yet fun game in case you want to get in on the adventure of fighting food falling from the sky. But what has to be one of the most fun, innovative special features I've ever seen is Splat Mode!, which allows the viewer to literally throw virtual pie, eggs, and meatballs at the film as it plays, only to have a big squeegee wipe it off for them. If only some rotten films, way past their expiration date, also came with this feature!

All in all, CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS on Blu-ray is a buffet of delectable special features, fun and interesting enough to keep the whole family nourished yet starving for more MEATBALLS!

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