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Mark Kermode’s Judicious “Meatballs 2—Review” Is a One-Note Argument

In response to Mark Kermode’s 199‑word review of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 on Observer [UK]

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Looking like Mike McCahill’s long-lost cousin, Mark Kermode’s “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2—review” thankfully only borrows the look of McCahill’s work, diverging in writing styles, Kermode thankfully choosing to write coherently.

While coherent, there just isn’t that much too take in here, with Kermode’s slightly less than 200 words not allowing much breathing room. He opts to take an approach that doesn’t leave much room for fleshed-out or dynamic arguments. The whole thing is basically simplified down to a simple equation. Do you like this sentence? Then you will like this movie.

This isn’t the kind of work that inspires great confidence. It’s hard to tell whether this is film criticism boiled down to its most basic essence or if it is simply impotent writing trying it’s hardest to accomplish something that it knows it can’t.

For a bite-sized take on the sequel, it does the job. It’s energetic at least. The introductory paragraph has some interesting and unique comparisons that include some players very rarely mentioned anywhere near children’s films. On that alone it warrants a look. After all, the stakes are low enough at this point that there is very little to lose. While far from convincing, Kermode does inject a unique spice to his work.    

Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation