Ron’s Gone Wrong: Film Review

20th Century Studios

We may have already had a children’s animation about the downsides of technology earlier this year but I still urge you to check out Ron’s Gone Wrong because it’s super sweet and charming.

The film is set in the future when the tech company Bubble launches its latest device – the B-bot, a walking, talking “best friend in a box” that is digitally connected to other B-bots to help find that user friends and expand his or her network. B-bots are super expensive and Barney (voiced by Jack Dylan Grazer) is the only child in school to not have one so he feels lonely and left out. His father Graham (Ed Helms) sees how badly his son wants a B-bot so for his birthday, he buys one for cheap because it fell off a truck – and the device, nicknamed Ron (Zach Galifianakis) – is extremely defective.

I loved what this film had to say about how technology and social media have made us more connected than ever digitally but also more lonely and isolated than ever in real life and how a device can never beat having a real friend. Some of these themes were tackled earlier this year in The Mitchells vs. The Machines, which is one of my favourite films of the year. It’s hard not to compare Ron to that movie, especially as this only comes out six months later. It’s not quite as strong but I still enjoyed it a lot.

Ron’s Gone Wrong is a lovely and delightful watch that lifted my spirits and made me laugh out loud often, with a couple of jokes being aimed squarely at adults. There’s still a lot of slapstick humour and silly fun to entertain the children and a good message to boot. I wasn’t 100% sold on the ending, I didn’t think it quite brought all the threads and themes together and became a touch too sentimental, but otherwise, I loved the story.

Galifianakis was the perfect choice for the voice of Ron, he achieves that constantly positive and chipper robotic voice while letting it also go off the rails due to Ron’s dysfunctional programming. His Hangover co-star Helms was solid as the tired single father who has lost that connection with his son and Grazer is a great voice actor, as he proved earlier this year with Luca. My favourite was Olivia Colman as Donka, Barney’s grandmother, the character has so much personality and spirit and Colman completely transforms her voice for the role; I had no idea it was her until the credits!

Ron’s Gone Wrong possibly suffers from coming out so soon after The Mitchells vs. The Machines but I think you should still give it a watch – I can assure you you’ll come away with a smile on your face.

In cinemas from Friday 15th October

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

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