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CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 3D

SYNOPSIS:
Flint Lockwood (voice of Bill Hader) is a socially awkward genius whose inventions have to date been a flop. But when his latest invention, designed to turn water into food, accidentally destroys the town square before soaring into the clouds, something extraordinary happens. It starts raining cheeseburgers. Flint has an immediate hit on his hands as every food the townsfolk dream of starts to float down from the sky. He forges a fast friendship with Sam Sparks (voice of Anna Faris), the TV weathergirl who comes to town to cover 'the greatest weather phenomenon in history'. But when the townsfolk start to greedily ask for more and more food, the machine starts to behave erratically unleashing spaghetti tornadoes and giant meatballs, Flint and Sam have to try to shut it down and make everything right.

Review by Louise Keller:
A seriously delicious and imaginative concept takes flight in this whimsical animated film where food, glorious food rains from the heavens. The source material is Judi Barrett's 1978 children's book which writer-directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have embraced as a visual feast. Simply put, the subject matter makes our tummies rumble in anticipation: how would you feel about snow-boarding down a slope of peppermint ice-cream, or venturing into a giant mould of yellow jello, where everything, including the grand piano is - you guessed it - made of jello. Making full use of the splendid 3D effects that make our foodie experience even more scrumptious, the film draws us in with a succinct storyline and characters with whom we relate. Tickling our funny bone and whisking us away into a visual fantasy, this is an inventive, colourful gourmet world the whole family will adore.

When we first meet Bill Hader's nerdy inventor Flint, he is a youngster, struggling to fit in. 'The world needs your originality,' his Mom (Lauren Graham) tells him, but his practical Dad (James Caan), who runs a fishing tackle shop and communicates by spouting fishing metaphors, believes Flint needs to hang up his white coat and help him in the store. When Flint makes his invention in which water turns into food, life in the sleepy town of Swallow Falls, previously famous only for its sardines, changes forever. No longer is Baby Brent (Andy Samberg), whose (baby) picture appears on the sardine tins the man of the moment, it is now Flint, who is ready to reap the applause for the newfound visibility of the little island now called Chewandswallow.

Flint's cute little monkey Steve soon points out that the Dangeometer is reaching danger levels as a 'Vegas-style all-you-can-eat buffet' request puts out the ingredients for the perfect food storm. Pancakes cover houses, gherkins destroy buildings and a tornado of spaghetti whirls through the air. There is nothing more bizarre than the scene in which headless roast chickens start to dance.

This is a very sweet film that reminds us to believe in yourself and accept who you are. This is emphasised through Flint's own professional journey as he goes on the ever slippery slope of fame, and through his burgeoning relationship with Anna Faris' strawberry blonde weather girl with the huge green eyes. The father and son relationship is important too.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 1
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 3D (G)
(US, 2009)

VOICES: Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan, Andy Samberg, Bruce Campbell, Mr T, Bobb'e J. Thompson, Benjamin Bratt, Neil Patrick Harris, Al Roker

PRODUCER: Pam Marsden

DIRECTOR: Phil Lord, Chris Miller

SCRIPT: Phil Lord, Chris Miller (book by Judi & Ron Barrett)

MUSIC: Mark Mothersbaugh

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Justin Thompson

RUNNING TIME: 90 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Sony

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: November 26, 2009







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