A couple weeks ago, I was privileged to take four of my children and four guest children to see the new LEGO® Ninjago Movie before the official release date. Movie tickets for my family and friends were provided to me by Allied Marketing.
When I first heard they were coming out with a new LEGO movie about Ninjago, I was surprised. After all, hadn’t they already told the Ninjago story from start to finish? In fact, the series ended and then started again amidst some confusion in my family of LEGO and LEGO Ninjago fans. I have six children, and all of them have watched the television series from start to finish. And then again. What was left to tell?
Then, I began to hear rumblings and grumblings from amongst the LEGO fan ranks. “I heard they were changing the story.” “Well then it won’t really be LEGO Ninjago.” “Well I don’t want to see the movie.” “Well I think it’s stupid to change the story when we already know how it happened.”
So from its start, the LEGO Ninjago had much to overcome amongst my family members, and I suspect amongst all LEGO Ninjago fans everywhere. We already *know* the story. Or do we?
So four of my children and their friends agreed to go see the movie with me and keep an open mind.
One of the very first lines in the movie states, “Forget everything you’ve heard before…” and with that the audience is launched into a whole new LEGO dimension for Ninjago. A world where Garmadon is still evil, and haunts the city of Ninjago with his evil plans which are consistently doomed to instant failure – until one day they aren’t doomed to failure and he takes over the city.
His son Lloyd is in high school in that very city where he also serves (under costume) as the Green Ninja. Everyone loves the Green Ninja. But everyone HATES Lloyd, who they all know is the son of Garmadon.
And from there on out, we will keep under wraps to prevent a spoiler.
So the big question is – did LEGO and Warner Brothers succeed in creating an entirely new Ninjago world? Can we accept this new movie as a part of the Ninjago story? Can we go with this?
“I like the new story better than the old one. I really like the new voices for the ninjas. I was really excited about the movie and I had fun.” (Caleb, age 11)
“The LEGO Ninjago movie was awesome, awesome, awesome. The new story was kinda cool and kinda weird at the same time. Going to see the movie was fun.” (Peter, age 8)
“I loved the new Ninja suits. I liked the idea of Meowtra. I loved that dudes got fired out of a volcano. I would love to see the movie again, it’s my favorite Ninjag0 movie.” (Joshua, age 8)
“I liked the message of the movie that losing your father and how that impacts you and what it can mean for your life and how reconnecting with your father if you have that chance can positively impact you. I liked that they focused on that a lot. And of course, I liked the animation and all the cool things they did. Whenever I watch a LEGO movie like that, it makes me want to go build.” (Jonathan, age 16)
The kids loved the movie so much that we ended up at the LEGO store afterward, stocking up on LEGO Ninjago Minifigs.
As the mom, I will say that there were a few token adult humor references that just were not necessary *at all* and didn’t really add to the movie in any way. For instance, Garmadon remarks that when he hugs himself (he has four arms) it looks from behind like he is making out with two people at once. That’s just not necessary.
For my part, I found the remarks to be silly and easy to ignore – they went over the kids’ heads. And I was thankful my kids and their friends enjoyed the movie and the new Ninjago world as much as they have loved it in the past.
We will be adding this movie to our collection.