• Wed. Dec 8th, 2021

Rons Gone Wrong REVIEW: A touching family comedy

Oct 15, 2021

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This witty, touching and slyly satirical debut of London-based Locksmith Animation begins with a big tech company launch of new R2-D2-sized companions called B*Bots. When we jump forward a few months, the B*Bot craze is in full swing. Sadly, the only kid without a robot is the one who seems to need one the most. While his classmates make friends and share videos with their new gadgets, 11-year-old misfit Barney Pudowski (voiced by Jack Dylan Grazer) is facing another lunchtime alone.

Barney lives with his widowed dad Graham (Ed Helms) and livewire granny Donka (a hilarious Olivia Colman), a Bulgarian refugee.

Barney desperately wants his own AI pal but the best his family can afford is a B*Bot that literally fell off the back of a lorry.

Ron (Zach Galifianakis), as Barney names him, can’t download the right software but his wonky arms, dodgy balance and two-bit facial expressions make him a master of slapstick comedy.

As Ron helps Barney fight back against the bullies, the kids fishing for “likes” with online pranks feel like the deprived ones.

Writers Sarah Smith (Arthur Christmas) and Peter Baynham (Alan Partridge) mix smart visual gags with timely swipes at social media culture.

Punches are pulled in the final act where expensive gadget crazes are acceptable as long as kids are kind.

But, like Paddington, this is one of those rare family comedies that tickles creaking and growing bones at the same time.

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