Review: A film nobody will enjoy, ‘Bling’ borrows heavily from others


“Bling,” a new CG film from Korea, attempts to mix characters from the classic Chinese novel “The Journey to the West” with elements borrowed from “Despicable Me,” “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs” and “The Incredibles.” The twain don’t meet.

In the not-too-distant future, amusement park mechanic Sam (Taylor Kitsch) can’t summon the nerve to propose to his childhood sweetheart, news anchor Sue (Jennette McCurdy), despite the encouragement of a trio of loyal cyborg buddies. Self-styled super-villain Oscar (Jason Kravits) is plotting with his robot henchman Victor (James Woods) to destroy the city unless the mayor, Sue’s snooty Aunt Catherine (Carla Gugino), agrees to marry him. The titlular “bling” is the engagement rings, which get switched.

Most of the film is a drawn-out string of chases, fights and explosions that fail to generate much excitement. The flatulence jokes contrast weirdly with Sam’s saccharine proposal to Sue. The voice actors shamelessly overact, delivering lines in grating shrieks. The weightless animation is equally overwrought: The characters flail about as if they’d contracted the cartoon equivalent of ergot poisoning.


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The result is a family film no member of the family will enjoy. The jokes are too gross, the threats too big and the story too needlessly complicated for small children. Older kids and adults will spend the seemingly endless 82 minutes picking out what elements have been taken from where: Sam’s little helpers, the Minatars, resemble the Minions; Sam acts a lot like Flint Lockwood in the “Cloudy” films, and so on.



Running time: 1 hour, 22 minutes

MPAA rating: PG for action, mayhem and rude humor

Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood