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March 27th, 2015

Movie Review - HOME


Starring: Jim Parsons, Rihanna, Steve Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Matt Jones, Brian Stepanek, April Lawrence, Stephen Kearin, Lisa Stewart, April Winchell, Derek Blankenship, and Nigel W Tierney

Directed by: Tim Johnson Screenplay by: Tom J Astle and Matt Ember Based on the Book by: Adam Rex Music by: Lorne Balfe

Premise: After the Boov take over Earth, Oh finds his new life there unexpectedly much like his old one. But when he makes the mistake of sending off a party invitation to ALL, which includes the dreaded Gorg his people had run to Earth to escape, Captain Smek and all the Boov want to arrest him. Realizing he made a mistake and trying to hide, Oh inadvertently runs into a human girl. One who accidentally didn't get carted off to Humanity Land like the rest of the Earth's population two weeks before. Now they need to make the effort to understand each other before things get any worse. (Rated  PG)


1) Voice Acting - Total Thumbs Up: Jim Parsons is fun as the clueless, well meaning Oh. Rihanna is totally adorable as Tip. Steve Martin as Captain Smek was a perfect choice. Matt Jones also added some great levity as Kyle.

2) Artwork/Animation - Total Thumbs Up: Dreamworks Animation did an awesome job on the film. The Boov's cool color changes and gradations were neat to watch and gave a different dimension to the alien characters. The circular thematic theme for all things Boov was also very well done. Watching iconic Earth structures floating in bubbles left no doubt things on Earth had changed.

I loved the bizarre clumps of floating things considered useless Earth items by the Boov. The weirdness of the Captain as he found other items to adore and use in non-human ways was highly amusing. There are four quick shorts at the film's site that are basically taped experiments of human devices - definitely amusing.

Pig, Tip's corkscrew tailed cat, was a hoot. His fur swayed and moved even as he purred. The silent but no less entertaining character added a lot of lovely flavor.

The Slush Car, a weird amalgamation of 7-11, Back to the Future, and Herbie the Love Bug, was totally awesome. Talk about using the resources available to the most advantage! The car rocked!

The Gorg ships and their planet destroying Mother Ship were quite impressive.  The Gorg in all their forms were fascinating as well.

3) Plot/Story - Thumbs Up: The commercials and the original "Almost Home" short shown as part of Mr. Peabody & Sherman conveyed a somewhat wrong impression of what the movie would be about, so it takes a little adjustment. The film though does pick up exactly where the short left off.

As the title implies, the main theme of the film is an exploration of what we emotionally call/feel is home and our struggles to fit in in society. Family is also a large theme in the film, as well as friendship and reaching mutual understanding between species.

The plot is pretty straightforward, containing few surprises, but it will definitely stir your emotions at a couple of spots. The reunion scene was quite moving. Some of Boov's reactions were most amusing. Though I have to say that with the things they eat for sustenance, some of the jokes with regards to things best not eaten, fall slightly flat.

Conclusion: HOME is entertaining and cute and will move you, but it won't excite or surprise you. Plenty of fun and action for the kids. The animation is great and has lots of nice inventive touches.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 (Hubby's Rating: Better for Matinee)

In case you missed it - this played before Mr. Peabody & Sherman - ALMOST HOME

Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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