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'Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs': Mostly Fun for All

Review with Meatballs (recipe link)

It seems food is still hot at the box office. The summer hit ‘Julie and Julia’ has now been followed by the surprise autumn blockbuster, ‘Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.’

Mind if we just call it ‘Meatballs’ for short? Thanks.

Well, it’s a satisfying meal of a movie—one the whole family will eat right up. The animated adventure offers lots of action and sight gags for the kids, with more than generous portions of humor and wit for those of us who eat at the grownup table.

Inspired by the beloved children’s book of the same name, Meatballs is the story of a nerdy lad from a struggling sardine fishing village who invents a machine that makes it rain food from the sky. As you might expect, things eventually get out of hand and the next thing you know there’s a tornado of spaghetti and giant meatballs wreaking havoc on the little town. I’m told the visuals are pretty spectacular in 3-D. We saw the regular 2-D version.

Try our favorite Spaghetti & Meatballs recipe

We went to the screening not knowing who were the voices behind the irrepressible young inventor, Flint Lockwood, or his eventual love interest, Sam Sparks, TV weather/news reporter. I like it better that way, because then I’m not mentally picturing the actors behind the voices. I was surprised to learn when the credits rolled that the two leads were played by SNL’s Bill Hader and Anna Faris (_The House Bunny_).

James Caan does a terrific job voicing Flint’s father, who just doesn’t understand his son’s creative urges, can’t express his own feelings, and doesn’t know a mouse from a minnow when it comes to computers. Mr. T and Andy Samberg also add to the fun with their voice work.

Meatballs has been Number One at the box office for the past two weeks and I suspect it will continue to draw crowds. Families are hungry for films like this. I’d put Meatballs it right up there with Toy Story and Monsters, Inc. One word of warning, it may make you hungry for cheeseburgers, or pancakes, or meatballs.

We’re having cheeseburgers tonight at our house.