William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is an all-time classic. Animated garden gnomes are deliciously cute. Elton John’s music is sensational. James McAvoy and Emily Blunt are both likable Brits. But the culmination of all of these things, Gnomeo & Juliet, is one of the worst animated films I’ve ever seen. And it’s in pointless 3D.
I had reasonable expectations for this one for the above reasons, and the fact that the promotional campaign made it look like a fun, funny, musical spectacular with an all-star voice cast (including, apart from McAvoy and Blunt, Jason Statham, Stephen Merchant, Michael Caine, Maggie Smith, Ozzy Osbourne, Patrick Stewart and Hulk Hogan!).
But somehow, Gnomeo & Juliet turned out to be painfully unfunny and entirely uninspiring. How could this be possible? The garden gnome jokes were essentially exhausted in the first few minutes, and the rest of it was repetitive and unclever. Yes, the garden gnomes were cute, but that alone wasn’t enough to carry the film. I actually had a couple of micro naps during the film, which has not happened since Van Helsing.
Worse still, Elton John’s music was criminally underused. How they managed to screw up something with so much potential is beyond me.
The worse part is probably the lack of heart. I wasn’t moved at all by the story or the characters. Disney/Pixar/Dreamworks are light years ahead when it comes to creating a cartoon that connects with audiences.
And yes, once again the 3D served no purpose other than to rip people off.
1.5 stars out of 5