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Pixels: Review

Pixels: Review

Starring: Adam Sandler, Peter Dinklage, Michelle Monaghan, Kevin James, Dan Ackroyd, Hall & Oats (Rated PG – 106 minutes).

Both Lara Croft films were dreadful, however the notorious 1992 flop Super Mario Bros is often regarded as the worst video game to big screen movie of its kind. 23 years later it has a rival.

During the upcoming school holidays, there definitely-maybe will be a family audience for Pixels, the mindless science-fiction adventure comedy that takes space invaders into the realms of possibility. If there are any loyal fans remaining of the once actually funny man Adam Sandler clutching onto the belief his next movie will be better than the previous one, they might notch up a few extra ticket sales before leaving equally dumbfounded as to where his early career talent went.

A quad of expert gamers who spent their teenage years within entertainment galleries are called into action by government officials after aliens take offense to a space probe transmission. The extra-terrestrial response is to send down lethal versions of the retro game characters and destroy humanity. Atari hostiles Donkey Kong and Pac Man among other electronic pixelated-box creations cause havoc, so the misfit foursome dust off their old joystick skills to top score before it’s game over for planet earth. Close encounters of the worst kind, they should have just called the ‘Ghostbusters’ to clean up the town. What’s next, Frogger the movie?

The soundtrack has a few classic hits but most of the nostalgia references are basic or poorly written, going through the unfunny motions of one pop culture joke after another to very little effect. Max Headroom makes a cameo, frankly a missed opportunity, nothing more than a quip for anyone who may remember the pre-digital age talking head.

Previous film Blended was OK largely due to chemistry with Drew Barrymore, seemingly phoning in his performance here. A sleepwalking Sandler hits rock bottom, the only way is up.

Shane A. Bassett

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