Meet The Robinsons (DVD & Blu-Ray)

Review Covers Blu-Ray & DVD Versions

Cover Art and Menus: 7/10
Fun cover, semi-confusing menu. Ok, so the cover isn’t a big creative jump. We see the main characters in all their colorful goodness. The menu is a scientific lab that looks kind of cool but it’s not great in HD. It’s chunky and doesn’t have the same excellent look of the movie.

Features: 8/10

  • Deleted Scenes – They make the effort to put deleted scenes on the disc with storyboard drawings and real voice acting. It’s cool to see a little bit of the process of making an animated feature.
  • Inventions That Shaped The World Meet The Real Life Thinkers Who Changed The World – This is one of those ‘made for TV’ things that pretends to be educational, but it’s really just a commercial for the movie.
  • Bowler Hat Barrage Game – Ok, you get this real little game. You fly the time machine through the city shooting at stuff….but where exactly are the Bowler Hats? It’s a good way to spend a few minutes if you are over 4. Under 4…well, get ready to camp out and play play play.
  • Family Function 5000 Game – Oh, another game. Well, it’s trivia about the movie that draws on your memory of who’s who in the Robinson family. It’s another way to spend a few minutes. We got to the end and I won’t spoil the big pay off for you, but let’s just say it’s…hmmmmm nevermind.
  • Music Videos – Ugh
  • Inventing The Robinsons Featurette – This is a good extra that gives us a more detailed look behind the scenes with the standard sections like the voices, the look of the film, the music, etc. It’s a top quality bonus feature for sure and it’s in full HD.
  • Audio Commentary By Director & Special Guest – I love the movie so I enjoy watching again while listening to these folks talk about it.
  • 5.1 Effects Only Track – hmm I don’t get the purpose of this one, but it’s kind of cool, and weird. You see the movie without all that talking..just sound effects. It’s really  just to test your audio system…yawn.

Movie: 8/10
This movie is great fun. That’s from a 39 year old chick! It looks great. The story is sweet but funny, and it’s got some excellent characters.

I’ll get right to it.

Lewis is a little genius kid who lives in an orphanage. He’s an inventor. He’s also sad that he has no family of his own. So, what does he do, he plans to make an invention that will help him remember his mother and then find her and get a family of his own.

As with all Disney stories, it’s not quite that simple.

There’s time travel and a whacky family full of strange and wonderful folks which all leads Lewis on an adventure he never bargained for, ever. I won’t fill in the details, but I’ll give you the essence of the family.

There’s a guy who shoots stuff out of cannons. A chick who operates a giant toy train. A grandpa who looses his teeth and wears his clothes back to front. Oh, and then there’s the mom who trains frogs to be a jazzy 50’s style band. A set of twins live in the potted plant on the front porch. Hmmm who else is there? The guy who delivers pizza to anywhere in the galaxy. I’m sure I forgot someone, but you get the idea. They are a lively bunch. They make a toast at dinner and dump the drinks on their heads…love it.

Lewis meets this rowdy bunch and through all the action and craziness that follows he gets that warm fuzzy feeling for them. He thinks he might just have found a family he can become a part of…oh but then there’s the bad guy.

The bowler hat guy is tall with crazy comedy legs and he’s kind of, um, not so bright. He’s got that bowler hat controlling him, which isn’t a good thing. You have to watch the movie to find out how a hat can control a dude. It’s worth it.

The heart of the movie is Lewis’s quest to learn how to move forward in life, even when the past might have left some sadness or confusion for him to deal with. It’s a grown up theme, but it’s a good one. “Keep Moving Forward”

I won’t go into the mild twists and turns that the plot takes, that would be spoiling things. I will just say it’s not as straight forward as you think it might be, and when the big reveals hit ya, just roll with it. It’s not meant to meet every law of physics or follow the time space continuum according to directions. Just let it unfold with the sense of fun and whimsy as the rest of the movie and your brain won’t explode.

I really enjoyed this movie. It’s one of those that kept me smiling and laughing all the way through. The look of it is a bit retro and totally fun at heart. I highly recommend it even to the most jaded of folks. You can watch it alone in the privacy of your little cave of misery if you want, but don’t pretend it doesn’t lift your spirits just a little!

Video & Audio: (By Ascully): 8/10
Disney seem to have got their act together with the HD releases in recent months. With Meet The Robinsons, along with the upcoming Ratatouille, they are delving into the computer animated sector. This is some of the best material to showcase the HD formats.

Meet The Robinsons visual style didn’t impress me as much as Surf’s Up. That’s not to say this is a bad transfer. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. It’s perfect. The main reason Meet The Robinsons doesn’t look quite like other titles is the director’s choices of art style, color palette and overall lighting. Even though I enjoyed the overall design of Meet The Robinsons, it does have a look and feel that makes it seem slightly aged, more so than the offerings of studios like Pixar.

The audio is impressive as Disney once again chose to go with a stunning uncompressed audio track. The standard Dolby 5.1 is also available on the DVD, but the uncompressed track differs from its smaller brother by being richer with more bass. It also makes the moments of Meet The Robinsons which contain music feel more powerful, adding to the emotions that the score is meant to deliver in the movie. Meet The Robinsons is not a showcase Blu-Ray disc, but it is a lot of fun and worth a look non the less.

Value: 7/10
I think this is one of those movies you need to have around if you’ve got kids from ages 0-10. I wish it would be priced more reasonably for the family folks, but that’s not in the cards for the world these days. If you plan to watch this many  many times, the Blu-Ray $24 price tag is still a bit steep. You can get it for around 16 bucks on standard DVD, which would be fine for the little dudes and gals to watch. If you have the big fancy Blu-Ray player and you want to see and hear it in big fancy style, do a big fancy rental.

Overall Score 8/10