Release Date: July 2, 2014
Director: Dave Green
Writer: Henry Gayden
Cast: Teo Halm, Astro, Reese Hartwig, Ella Wahlestedt, Jason Gray-Stanford, Alga Smith, Cassius Willis, Sonya Leslie, Kerry O’Malley, Virginia Louise Smith, Peter Mackenzie, Valerie Wildman, Roger Hewlett, Mary Pat Gleason, Marilyn Giacomazzi, Frank Lloyd, Chris Wylde, Brooke Dillman, Myk Watford, Tiffany Espensen, Israel Broussard, Drake Kemper.
MPAA Rating: PG
Runtime: 89 minutes
Production Company: Panay Films, Walt Disney Studios
Distributors: Relativity Media, Captive Cinema Distribution, E1 Films Canada, Golden Village Pictures
Genre: Adventure, Family, Sci-Fi
I love it when a film is self-aware, knowing its target audience. For that this one receives high merits. Even if you aren’t in the target range there’s still much to enjoy with ‘Earth to Echo.’ You may have to suspend your disbelief, but it’s still a fun ride. Lowered expectations may help a little as well. It amazes me how some films get the pass, and others don’t, but all walks of life aren’t fair. While aimed at children this is still a film for the family, and has a warm feeling to it that will leave you satisfied.
Found footage films had their run of fame, fell out of interest but may be coming back. I don’t know how much battery power the three main characters had to accomplish this adventure, and that question does linger over the film throughout. Friends Alex, Munch, and Tuck are saying their goodbye’s thinking the next few days will be their last. They then embark on one last adventure that feels like an old classic ‘The Goonies.’ They’re trying to help their friend Echo return home to his distant planet. Already, you know you’ve heard this story before, but it doesn’t hurt to see it again. The adventure our heroes go on is a fun one, even if at times it can be completely unrealistic. Sneaking in and out of bars, over a girlfriend’s house while the parents are home, or infiltrating high secured government facilities just doesn’t fly well. Though it works as these are ambitions of most children/young teens and how they can dream of being an adult on their own.
Initially the chemistry between the three friends wasn’t there. It wasn’t clear how they were close enough friends to want to spend the amount of time they did together. They each had their unique personalities, and that especially goes to Munch’s character. Though as a whole it was difficult to buy their relationship at first. Though their bond started to meld as they went on the new journey, each was very funny which kept you engaged with you wanting them to accomplish their goal. Echo the robot did remind you of a live action Wall-E, so if you’ve seen that film you’ll appreciate that here. If not you’re in for a cute treat that may make for some emotional beats.
I thought Earth to Echo was a cute little film. It did have its flaws but for some reason still worked. There isn’t too much negative to say about the film other than it being completely unrealistic at times. Though I’m not speaking about floating robot aliens and/or their ships, just other beats between humanity that don’t add up. The film doesn’t want you to take it too seriously, and that’s apparent with its set up. While not spectacular it’s enjoyable and will leave most satisfied. If you do have an interest already, you will enjoy it, but if you have doubts I suggest you stay away for it’s just not aimed for you.