Movie Review: DreamWorks Animation's The Boss Baby - #TheBoss

Animation, in 3D
Release: March 31, 2017
Directed by: Tom McGrath
Written by: Michael McCullers (based on the award-winning picture book by Marla Frazee)
Producer: Ramsey Ann Naito
Cast: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Miles Bakshi
THE BOSS BABY Official Channels: Site | Facebook | HASHTAG: #TheBossBaby
DreamWorks Animation and the director of Madagascar invite you to meet a most unusual baby. He wears a suit, speaks with the voice and wit of Alec Baldwin, and stars in the animated comedy, DreamWorks’ The Boss Baby. The Boss Baby is a hilariously universal story about how a new baby's arrival impacts a family, told from the point of view of a delightfully unreliable narrator, a wildly imaginative 7 year old named Tim. With a sly, heart-filled message about the importance of family, DreamWorks’ The Boss Baby is an authentic and broadly appealing original comedy for all ages.

When it comes to animated features, there are "kid" movies, there are "adult" movies and there are "family" movies.  The goal, I'm guessing, is to make "family" animated movies, or movies that the whole family can enjoy together, but making a "family" film is a tricky balance. The Boss Baby, opening this week, is undoubtedly a "kid" movie.  

It isn't a bad "kid" movie, as far as I could tell. The kids I brought with me enjoyed the concept of having a kid in charge.  The plot, pitting puppies against babies, was cute for kids.  There is a lot of kid, gross-out humor.   Alec Baldwin (as the voice of the Boss Baby) has some dialogue which speaks to children. The script is full of things that kids wish they could say aloud, but don't. 

The colors are vibrant. The music is cool. All in all, it's a harmless kid story for children of any age. 

Parents, on the other hand, should not expect to like it.  I sat through the film, but twenty minutes in, I was over the whole thing. Baldwin's jerky voice started to wear on me, even as a cute-looking baby.  There were several voice actors playing babies, but they weren't, I think, used to their full potential. 

And there are few animated features that are worthy of going past a ninety minute run-time. The Boss Baby isn't one of them. There are a few draggy parts in the middle. I think I dozed-off for eight to ten minutes. 

Still, The Boss Baby is enough fun for children that parents can survive the extended run-time.  Some years are great for animated moves. 2017 looks like it's going to be slow for original, entertaining animated features that the whole family can enjoy. So, when the kids have to get out of the house, The Boss Baby isn't a bad fix.  Take them to see The Boss Baby now playing everywhere.

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