Jonathan North’s review published on Letterboxd:
Cute, watchable, probably going to end up being kind of forgettable? I didn't know what to expect with this film, the first feature from a new studio, Locksmith Animation, and while it didn't blow me away or anything, I think it was a decent first film, and I am going to be looking forward to seeing what else the studio has to offer.
I loved how glitchy Ron was, and Zach Galifianakis was perfect in the role. I also loved Barney's Bulgarian Grandmother, but I love most hilarious old lady characters, so she was probably a given for me.
Aside from them, The rest of the characters, were basically template characters we've seen a million times, and I don't even remember any of their names. Except Barney, but that's because repeating his name many times over was a significant plot point.
Although, now that I think about it, I suppose the same things could be said for the characters I did like too... The only difference was I thought they were fun. XD
The big thing I disliked in the film, was the pseudo-dytopian-nightmare world that they have imagined for the children that live in this movie. Everyone has their own B-Bot, which doubles as their own automatic YouTube channel. They are basically online 24/7, uploading literally everything they do to the internet, except for when they go to school, which is when they power down. To charge, maybe? I don't know. All I know is that their lives are a living nightmare, that I would not want foisted upon my worst enemy.
Part of me wonders (worries?) that this is the kind of life the children of today want, though the more cynical side of me thinks that this is what out-of-touch Hollywood execs THINK the children of today want, and wrote them accordingly. I dislike both scenarios.
Another issue for me was that there were also a lot of technology/internet-related things in this, that felt like they were either written by people who do not understand technology or social media AT ALL, or they do, and they were trying to dumb things down for kids, and it ending up making certain plot points feel dumb. Especially the big "Emotional" twist at the end, which just made me roll my eyes.
I know it feels like I'm ragging on this film, and to some extent, I am, but in the end, despite the fact that I think a bunch of it could have used some serious re-writes, I did have fun with a lot of this film.
Like I said, Ron and the grandmother were my favorite characters, and they had a lot of screen time, so even with the things I didn't like, I still had fun, and I would probably recommend this to animation fans with kids. Especially ones who are less picky than me. XD
Despite my own issues, it's still a pretty fun movie. Not a must-see animated feature, but a moderately enjoyable one-off.