cover of book

The LEGO Movie
by Dana Polan
University of Texas Press, 2020
Paper: 978-1-4773-2157-7 | eISBN: 978-1-4773-2159-1
Library of Congress Classification PN1997.2.L4548P65 2020
Dewey Decimal Classification 791.4372


What happens when we set out to understand LEGO not just as a physical object but as an idea, an icon of modernity, an image—maybe even a moving image? To what extent can the LEGO brick fit into the multimedia landscape of popular culture, especially film culture, today? Launching from these questions, Dana Polan traces LEGO from thing to film and asserts that The LEGO Movie is an exemplar of key directions in mainstream cinema, combining the visceral impact of effects and spectacle with ironic self-awareness and savvy critique of mass culture as it reaches for new heights of creativity.

Incorporating insights from conversations with producer Dan Lin and writer-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, Polan examines the production and reception of The LEGO Movie and closely analyzes the film within popular culture at large and in relation to LEGO as a toy and commodity. He identifies the film’s particular stylistic and narrative qualities, its grasp of and response to the culture industry, and what makes it a distinctive work of animation within the seeming omnipresence of animation in Hollywood, and reveals why the blockbuster film, in all its silliness and seriousness, stands apart as a divergent cultural work.

See other books on: Animated films | Film | Motion pictures | Polan, Dana | Production and direction
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