Home (2015): No Family Gets Left Behind
Context: Animated Feature
Overall Excellence: 3
It feels like they showed Lilo and Stitch to a classroom full of preschoolers and asked them to come up with their own movie like that. The result is certainly colorful, though often poorly thought out and too often resulting in some rather stupid plot devices (such as the ‘invite all’ meaning that it invites everyone in the galaxy?) Home is as predictable as they come that will more often than not take the easiest route through convenience writing, all to serve a very mediocre plot and some very on the nose character progression (outcast alien finds his way to girl, and at first, conflict ensues because of differences, but eventually, family like bonds form). If you do watch it, just be sure to check your brain at the door.
Oh, and unlike the crazy chaotic fun qualities of Stitch (who was genetically created to be that way, and has to fight his own nature vs who was born different in a race predisposed to certain attitudes and beliefs, and has to fight his own wanting to obey possible nurture based or nature based programming that clearly doesn’t work with him, blah blah blah), the lead alien in Home I found very obnoxious (the whole race was kind of obnoxious and unlikable, actually)… though he grows less so throughout the film, I guess as you get used to him, but I still didn’t ultimately like the character. The girl fared better.
The More Thoughts
The more I think about it, the more realize how much this is Lilo and Stitch if you had the aliens come to Earth at the beginning of the movie and take over, shuffling the humans into ‘internment camps’. And that wouldn’t be so bad, especially as a commentary on what humans have done time and time with groups of people they don’t understand, but the film never dares have an original thought in its head, nor does it try to have much of a point or commentary. It just is, everything feels tossed in just cause. Hey, let’s have a hovercraft that is powered by slushis! Why? Uh, do we need a reason? And that is what this film feels like. A cobbled together mess of ideas hammered into a very typical plot structure.
When Lilo and Stitch came out, it was this weird, strange, beautifully different animated film coming from a studio that had pretty much abandoned traditional animation. It was odd, it was off beat, and in many ways, it was risky… Home is the movie Lilo and Stitch could have been in lesser hands.
And the tagline is very misleading for Home. ‘Worlds Collide’. There wasn’t much of a collision, given how easy the aliens shuffled humanity off to internment camps to live. But I guess that could also apply to two people from a different species getting on the same page. I suppose.
The Final Thoughts
Is it worth watching? It’s not a horrible film, but it’s also not very good. I’m sure some will find plenty of fun in this strange mess, but I would say you are better off waiting until the next good Dreamworks Animation film or Pixar film. Or, just go watch Lilo and Stitch again, where they actually got the formula right.