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Published On: Mon, Sep 7th, 2015

‘Pixels’ Review: Nostalgic fun for the children of the 80’s

Even a movie with a stupid premise can be wrapped in a ton of 80’s reference to find a way to be entertaining – that’s exactly what you can expect from Pixels. Sony flopped again with Adam Sandler and Kevin James, but families will be happy to escape for 90 minutes in the alien invasion film.

A 1982 video game championship results in a time capsule being launched into space, capturing the achievements of these misfit teens. Misunderstood by aliens as a declaration of war, the classic arcade games manifest in an invasion to conquer the earth.

With a few frivolous side stories, Pixels never takes itself too seriously. Director Chris Columbus moves the action to set up the next gag or series of 80’s references. Joining Sandler and James is Josh Gad and Peter Dinklage, all now attempting to save the earth because of their video game skills.

Josh Gad and Adam Sandler battling aliens in "Pixels"

Josh Gad and Adam Sandler battling aliens in “Pixels”

The story never intends to make sense, especially since Pac-man becomes a street race, full of stunts, which would easily be beyond the talents of the nerds. Sean Bean and Brian Cox attempt to play military figure heads to set up more gags, at least one will work on you, and Michelle Monaghan is the obligatory love interest for Sandler, fulfilling the cliche female role.

Fun is all Pixels has to offer. Q-bert, Selena Williams, Martha Stewart and Jane Krakowski as First Lady Cooper all gives us a snicker. The film isn’t perfectly clean for the youngsters, but never gets vulgar.

The Pac-Man showdown in "Pixels"

The Pac-Man showdown in “Pixels”

Josh Gad has the best scenes (singing Tears for Fears, screaming at soldiers for a pep talk) and the 80’s footage with voice over are certain to get a response from the audience.

Sandler becomes the weakest link on screen, looking bored in his own film. His laziest makes us care less about the “invasion” until Gad pops up again.

Dan Aykroyd’s talents were wasted as the 1982 MC of the video game championship.

Expect little and come away with a smile. The audience “awed” and “clapped” proving that Americans are mindless drones with plotless films, so Sandler will continue to crank them out.

James as the President sets up a ton of Bush-esque gags at his expense, but surprisingly his weight is ignored in this film. Dinklage’s “Fire Blaster” character is just awful, cliche and is more irritating than a foil for Sandler’s protagonist.

Denis Akiyama turns up as original Pac-Man creator Toru Iwatani, while the real-life Iwatani makes a brief appearance elsewhere.)

Overall Pixels gets 2 out of 5 stars

Add a star if you love the 80’s, those video games and music – AND you can keep those expectations low.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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