‘We Can Be Heroes’ offers the youngsters of superheroes a shot at saving the world






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Though finest identified for edgier fare, Rodriguez explored his lighter facet with “Spy Youngsters” in 2001 and “Sharkboy and Lavagirl” 4 years later. This new film ties immediately into the latter, that includes the youngsters of these heroes in addition to others — with names like Miracle Man — introduced collectively to save lots of the world after their mother and father get rapidly overwhelmed and captured by alien invaders.

It is a acquainted idea, one which birthed the equally themed “Sky Excessive” the identical 12 months as “Sharkboy,” and offered the essential template for Disney+’s “The Secret Society of Second-Born Royals” earlier this 12 months. The fantasy of kids changing into superheroes stays a sturdy one, which explains why outfits like Disney preserve returning to it.
The mother and father, notably, characteristic some recognizable faces regardless of the puny nature of their roles (the issues we do for our children), together with Pedro Pascal (pulling double Christmas responsibility in “Surprise Girl 1984”), Christian Slater, Boyd Holbrook and the unique Lavagirl, Taylor Dooley. Priyanka Chopra Jonas additionally drops in because the overseer of The Heroics, mainly this universe’s model of the Justice League.

Nonetheless, the main target is squarely on the youngsters, a modestly interesting group led by outsider Missy (YaYa Gosselin), whose fundamental talent lies in coaxing her friends about the necessity to function as a crew. That is solely one of many built-in classes, in a “The kids are our future” type of method.

Not like the aforementioned films that characteristic high-school-age youngsters, the youngsters are youthful right here, and the film possesses a sensibility reflecting that even in comparison with, say, Disney Channel-type fare.

This was clearly made for youths, not critics, and the design and motion are vibrant sufficient to divert them. Rodriguez — who additionally produced, edited and shot the movie, working together with his personal youngsters in what’s clearly a household affair — is well-versed in superhero tropes for fogeys who can admire comic-book satire.

Add it up and “We Can Be Heroes” serves as a really minor addition to Netflix’s kids-and-family tier, for fogeys on the lookout for one thing new to maintain their tykes occupied. As an apart, the film underscores the present state of streaming, the place no title with a shred of fairness in it — even one as bizarre as “Sharkboy and Lavagirl” — is ever formally out of the working to make a comeback.

“We Can Be Heroes” premieres Dec. 25 on Netflix.






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