In voting for this award, I sat through:
PUSS IN BOOTS,
WINNIE THE POOH,
HAPPY FEET 2,
ALVIN & THE CHIPMUNKS: CHIPWRECKED,
A CAT IN PARIS,
CHICO & RITA,
KUNG FU PANDA 2,
GNOMEO & JULIET and
MARS NEEDS MOMS.
- The Oscar watch was down to the last (and I do mean the last) animated feature. MARS NEEDS MOMS was better than Hoodwinked and Chipwrecked, and I also think it was better than TINTIN – another MoCap film. directed MARS, and his work is reliably stable. (He directed PRINCE OF EGYPT, BALTO and WE”RE BACK.) He and Wendy Wells also wrote the script from Berkeley Breathed’s book. Like TINTIN, the film had a breakneck pace, but unlike TINTIN it didn’t ignore some of the basic rules of cinema. No annoying swooping spins around the characters, with an endlessly moving camera; it also didn’t feature lots of busy work (as if to prove it was animated)l nor did it have a breathless pace (as if to create Action! Adventure! and Tedium!). No, unlike TINTIN, MARS NEEDS MOMS was more craftily observant of the audience’s reaction. It knew when to stop the action, then go back to the danger. It knew when to add humor instead of just running, running, running.
Mars Needs Moms is a movie about Milo. Milo is nine and lives with his two parents. His father works constantly and is away most of the time. His mother stays at home and takes care of him. Milo resents his mother and constantly rebels against her. After being grounded on his first night after summer break started, Milo wishes that he never had a mom to tell him what to do. He goes to apologize to her for saying such a mean thing but, the Martians are kidnapping her. He follows the Martians to their ship and stows away, planning to get his mom back. The Martians find him and lock him away in the jail. He is released by Gribble who has been hiding on Mars for years. Gribble lives underneath the Martians complex. Milo learns that the females run the planet and the supervisor is their leader. The male children are sent down the garbage chute to be raised by the other males of the planet. Milo convinces Gribble to help him save his mom before it is too late. While Milo is trying to save his mom, both him and Gribble are almost caught by the supervisor. Milo is helped by a girl name Ki but gets separated from her. He finds Gribble and they escape to the old Martian city.