The Emoji Movie gets a frowny face

City Press review: The Emoji Movie

On the one hand, there is Ratatouille – a fun-filled, emotionally engaging movie for the whole family that has a main character who is lovable, determined and endearing. On the other hand, there is The Emoji Movie, which is none of those things.

The movie is about Gene (Silicon Valley’s TJ Miller), a multifaced emoji who lives in Textopolis – a digital city in the phone of a teenager named Alex. He’s on his way to becoming a “meh” emoji like his parents after a failed first day in the text box of Alex’s phone.

Together with two other emojis, Hi-5 – who has lost his popularity – and Jailbreak – a hacker who will supposedly help – Gene tries to resume his place in the text box.

For 3-year-olds, the movie might be adventurous and fun as the characters navigate the various applications of the phone.

However, to adults, it seems to be a long and boring advertisement for a variety of popular applications.

Watch the trailer here:


The plot is paper-thin and concentrates almost entirely on Gene’s journey to being reprogrammed, while sometimes drawing a parallel with Alex’s world. His relationship with a girl at school is dependent on the proper use of his emojis ... Why doesn’t he just talk to her?

I was disappointed by the lack of emotion in this film, despite the fact that they tried to put in a couple of heartwarming scenes.

More dialogue could have given the characters life and personality, and would possibly have made this into something the whole family could enjoy.

The only character who breathed a bit of life into it all was Smiler (Maya Rudolph), the original smiley emoji, and boss, who’s goal is to terminate Gene. Her over-the-top grin, even when she’s angry, gives the character a bit of an edge.

Given the choice between going out to watch this movie and staying at home and watching one of the classics such as Ice Age ... it’s a no-brainer.

Read Channel24's review of The Emoji Movie here!

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