I love Disney movies. But really I mean who under the age of 30 does not? We had the privilege of growing up with a new Disney animation film every three years after the frightening story of The Little Mermaid was turned into a delightful Disney animation in 1989. Meet the Robinsons is the 2007 film adaption of the 1990 children’s picture book A Day with Wilbur Robinson.
I remember watching the movie for the first time in a chinky theater in a college town with a bunch of friends. I believe we came to decide on a Disney animation after I picked one too many horror flicks as the group movie (that flick was 2007 Dead Silence a week earlier). We all adored the show. Rewatching it today I had just as an entertaining experience as I did the first time. But with time comes greater knowledge, and I was able to spot out even more pop culture references that I missed the first time around.
One realization that I had was how uncanny the movie is to the song “Mrs. Robinson” by Simon and Garfunkel and the movie that inspired the song: The Graduate. Lewis (the main protagonist who is also a 12 year old orphaned scientific genius) ends up time travling into the future and (spoilers) meets his future family. This includes the couple that will eventually adopt him, brothers and sister in-laws, a robot he’s going to build, an octopus servant, and future wife. The future wife part is where this plot line becomes similar to a younger man developing feelings for a friend’s mother. Even though Lewis’ friend is his future son Wilbur. It makes some amazing chemistry in some very cheeky scenes. And don’t ask questions about the wibly, wobly timey, wimey…..stuff.
A brilliant scene is where Lewis is reciting all of the information he just learned about Wilbur’s family and he asks what Wilbur’s father looks like. Wilbur hesitates and then says “Tom Selleck,” who turns out to be the voice actor of the older Lewis; Cornelius. And that my friend is what I would describe as a clever, outlandish creative team.
The movie keeps me smiling the entire time too. A dinosaur which is a temporary minion of the evil Bowler Hat Guy (Stephen J. Anderson) constantly makes me laugh. The following video clip is why I love this particular dinosaur (although, I love all dinosaurs so really who am I to play favorites, but I am. I am playing favorites. I sincerely ask you to watch it.
And that superman look alike who was driving the pizza ship? Yeah, he’s voiced by Adam West. The guy who was Batman in the 60s. Meet the Robinsons was great the first time, but I feel as though it’s one of those films that gets better with each watch because you see hints to the plot line earlier in the film before they happen. You carefully watch the movie to find little nods to “the future” of the plot and to Lewis’ future, and it makes it all that much better. It’s a film that not only will hold the attention of children, but also adults. And not just young adults like me, my father began watching it 5 minutes in with me and stayed till the credits. In the end, I laughed, I cried, I found the Robinsons to be delightful. And so will you. Let me know if you love that dino as much as I do.