Meet the Robinson (2007): To the Future
From the singing frogs to a t-Rex, Meet the Robinsons is a film made for imagination and innovation. Like most movies, Meet the Robinsons has a several ideologies or, “a body of ideas reflecting social needs and aspirations of an individual, group, class, or culture” (Giannetti 403). The overt idea or message is pasted all throughout the film and is Lewis’s future slogan, “Keep Moving Forward”. The film supports this message with celebrating failure and the can-do attitude of never giving up. This message also comes with the implied thesis of you can always fix your mistakes. Children learn early on that mistakes are inevitable; what they don’t learn is some mistakes just cannot be fixed. Meet the Robinsons illustrates one of the most inspiring messages for the current generation, but the implied message of there always being a chance to fix your mistakes provides unrealistic expectations to children.
First, the current generation needs to hear the main message that Meet the Robinsons overtly portrays, “Keep Moving Forward”. We are a generation of people who want things done now and perfectly the first time. If something fails the first time, we usually give up on whatever it was that failed. Giving something a second chance is time consuming, and we just don’t have time for that. Logically, we should give time to our failures since that is how we grow. The film does an excellent job of promoting failure as a learning experience to children which is what failure should be. Not moving forward from failure or giving up totally on a project or a relationship is seen as the easiest solution. Maybe because we are hurt or tired we just want to fail, but Lewis learns from his future family to accept failure as a step towards something better. Lewis had given up on finding a family that loved him and inventing something that worked. He had to go to the future to learn that his life would be better than he imagined.
Going to the future and the past to fix mistakes, Lewis and Wilbur indicate that there is always time to fix mistakes. I think that is an unrealistic ideal to teach children. Some mistakes are just not meant to be fixed, and people need to get past those mistakes to “Keep Moving Forward”. Also to build character, people should understand that mistakes are imminent and to be learned from but not necessarily meant to be fixed. When people make mistakes, they establish “ethos based on their backgrounds and their knowledge” (Lunsford 45), and mistakes make knowledge. In the film, Wilbur leaves the door to the garage open providing the bowler hat guy a chance to steal one of two time machines. Wilbur corrects his mistake by going back to the same time period as the bowler hat guy and enlisting the help of Lewis. The fact that Wilbur has to go back in time to fix his mistake implies that he gets to fix his mistake in the past. Lewis towards in the end of the film gets to fix his mistake by time traveling as well. We don’t always get that second chance to fix our mistakes. The emotions that accompany not being able to fix our mistakes can be destructive and misleading because everyone makes mistakes. We just need to learn to “Keep Moving Forward”.
Overall, Meet the Robinsons makes a valid point for moving on from failure, but does not address the reality of not being able to fix situations or people. Sometimes, we just have to live with the consequences. But with those consequences, we can “Keep Moving Forward”. I give this movie 3/3 movie tickets.