The Reel Review


A quirky, dysfunctional family must learn how to reconnect and work together to save all of humanity after their cross country road trip is disrupted by a Terminator-like robot apocalypse, in this goofy Netflix family adventure/comedy from Sony Animation.

Maya Rudolph, Abbi Jacobson, Mike Rianda, Doug the Pug and Danny McBride in The Mitchells vs The Machines.

Abbi Jacobson (Broad City), Maya Rudolph and Danny McBride lead the voice cast in this charming, whip-smart story with dazzling animation and a huge heart. It really feels like a hand-drawn comic book come to life. Oscar-winner Olivia Colman (The Favourite, The Crown) is the standout amongst an impressive line-up of supporting characters, as the playfully annoyed smartphone AI technology trying to conquer the world. Writer/directors Michael Rianda and Jeff Lowe (Gravity Falls) also pay homage to a slew of iconic classics, including Ghostbusters, Tron, Dawn of the Dead, Kill Bill and of course, Terminator. The furby attack is hysterical.

The world’s largest furby, in The Mitchells vs. The Machines.

At times the film relies a bit too much on its exhaustingly frenetic, eye-popping animation and overstays it’s nearly two hour runtime by about 20 minutes, but those are minor complaints for such a sweet, heartfelt story that also serves as a thought-provoking commentary about the importance of using technology to augment life, rather than replace actual living.


The Mitchells vs. The Machines is Maya Rudolph and Danny McBride’s third animated film together, after 2016’s The Angry Birds Movie and 2019’s The Angry Birds Movie 2.

• Real life couple John Legend and Chrissy Teigen play the Mitchells’ fabulous neighbors in the film, with Saturday Night Live‘s Beck Bennett voicing the twin Eric/PAL robots that help the Mitchells.

• Monchi was played by Doug the Pug, an internet sensation with nearly 4 million Instagram followers.

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