Released in 2009, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was a critical and commercial success. The film surpassed expectations earning $240 million on a $100 million dollar budget to make the film. In 2013 a sequel titled Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 was released once again to critical acclaim.
Loosely based on the children’s book of the same name by Judi and Ron Barrett, the animated sci-fi comedy tells the story of Flint Lockwood, a fumbling scientist, who always wanted to be the inventor of something magnificent. The zealous creator of numerous failed inventions, including spray on shoes, a remote controlled television, rat birds, hair-un-balder and a flying car, Flint finally invents a “successful” machine that transforms water into food, called the “Flint Lockwood Diatonic Super Mutating Dynamic Food Replicator,” or FLDSMDFR for short.
However, when the FLDSMDFR short-circuits his house, he decides to power the machine using the nearby nuclear power plant. Suddenly the machine rockets out of control, destroying town square and launches up into the clouds. Then something amazing happens… delicious cheeseburgers start raining from the sky. Flint’s machine actually works!
Realizing its potential, Flint creates a communication device for the townspeople to send orders to the machine to create all different types of food. The town is renamed Chewandswallow and becomes a popular tourist destination for ‘foodies’ everywhere. But when people greedily ask for more and more food, the machine starts to lose control, unleashing spaghetti tornadoes and giant meatballs that threaten the world! Flint, along with the help of weather girl Sam Sparks and Steve, his pet monkey, must find a way to shut down the machine before the world is covered in super-sized meatballs!
Delightful performances from the voice-over ensemble included:
- Bill Hader as Flint Lockwood, and the voice of the “FLDSMDFR” machine
- Max Neuwirth as Young Flint Lockwood
- Anna Faris as Samantha “Sam” Sparks, a weather intern from New York City
- James Caan as Tim Lockwood, Flint’s technophobic, widowed father
- Neil Patrick Harris as Steve the Monkey, Flint’s pet Vervet monkey
- Bruce Campbell as Mayor Shelbourne, the gluttonous and egotistical mayor of Swallow Falls
- Andy Samberg as Brent McHale, an infamous celebrity mascot of Baby Brent’s Sardines
- Mr. T as Officer Earl Devereaux, the town’s athletic cop
- Bobb’e J. Thompson as Calvin “Cal” Devereaux, Earl’s son
- Benjamin Bratt as Manny, Sam’s Guatemalan cameraman and a former doctor, co-pilot, and comedian
- Al Roker as Patrick Patrickson, the anchorman of the weather station
- Lauren Graham as Fran Lockwood, Flint’s deceased mother
- Will Forte as Joseph Towne, a redneck citizen of Chewandswallow
- Peter Siragusa as Rufus
- Angela Shelton as Regina Devereaux
- Liz Cakowski as Flint Lockwood’s Teacher
- Neil Flynn as Weather Network News Producer
The sequel Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 was released on September 27, 2013. Directed again by Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn, it is based on the original storyline, where Flint and his friends must save the world from the FLDSMDFR, but this time the machine produces living food beasts. The majority of the original cast reprise their roles, with Terry Crews replacing Mr. T. Kristen Schaal joins the cast as orangutan Barb, and Will Forte returns in a new role as Chester V.
Image: © Sony Pictures Animation