Now I should probably clarify at this stage, I don’t THINK they’re suggesting I’m an evil, maniacal overlord who wants to destroy cities and stamp on all types of creativity.
I THINK they’re calling me this because of my resemblance to ‘The Man Upstairs’ (as the credits list Will Ferrell’s character) in the final act of the movie.
And if I’m honest, they’re not that wrong. I pretty much AM President Business.
But is that SUCH a bad thing?
I’d like to present the case for the argument that we might all have judged him a little too harshly when we watched the film – and I think you might even agree with a few of my points…
(You might not of course, but hey – that’s life, you can’t win them all, etc)
I knew I had it coming from the moment we were sat in the cinema watching the movie for the first time. As the movie came to its conclusion, I noticed my wife smirking and casting mocking looks my way whenever the Father and Son had a discussion about Lego.
The part where the boy questions why the box has ‘8 to 14’ written on it (to which the father replies “That’s just a suggestion… they HAVE to put that on there”) caused my wife a huge amount of amusement in particular.
Needless to say, as we walked out of the cinema my similarity to President Business was the main topic of conversation. So my new nickname is hardly a surprise to me.
But have we all been too quick to criticise and dismiss President Business’s attitude? Is he really so bad?
Now I’ve never gone as far as to glue my Lego collection together, but any parent who has ever spent post-bedtime hours trying to rebuild models (or minifigures) which have been mixed together (usually at the request of the child) will probably have been tempted once or twice.
While capping pictures for this post, my wife and I were trying to estimate the cost of PB’s Lego collection. My best guess was at LEAST £50k, possibly into the 6 figures. Mrs Business must be even more understanding than my wife! He’s clearly got a VERY large cellar to store it all in, too – so I think it’s fair to say the Business family are not exactly on the breadline. If they’ve got enough money to splash around, can we really resent him having a hobby?
And as I regularly tell my wife when she complains about Lego cluttering up the house, there are a lot of less wholesome hobbies he could have. He could be spending it on fast cars, drugs, gambling, loose women – any number of salubrious hobbies. But no, he’s collecting a popular modelling toy and flexing his creativity (albeit it not TOO much creativity). I bet he keeps the instructions somewhere safe, too. Wise man!
When I first decided to let my children loose on my Lego collection (okay – SOME of my Lego collection) it was a nervous day for me. Would they lose all the pieces and break the parts? Would their friends treat them as well as I know my kids probably will? Will they appreciate the value of the toys they are essentially getting for free?
So I feel for President Business quite a bit. Not to mention, he seems to be a collector. Look up on the shelf in the background of the shot below – that’s the Taj Mahal, a highly collectible model. They also mention in another part of the movie that he has “lands” for different Lego themes – including some of the rarer collections. The man clearly collects Lego and wants to keep it in good condition.
Would we judge another collector so harshly? Do collectors of antique dolls get mocked for not letting children play with them? No, of course not – they’d break them. How about people who collect other children’s toys, like Meccano or train sets? Do they get told they have to let their children play with their collections? I doubt it.
So why should President Business be any different? So long as he does actually let his children have SOME Lego (which he clearly does) why should he immediately turn over his entire collection to his kids?
With the sequel already announced, I’m hoping we’ll see the son turning into a passionate but careful Lego fan, who enjoys creating models (let’s face it, he already shows quite a lot of flair for imagination!), keeps his Lego tidily stored, builds beautiful yet structurally-sound models and who doesn’t constantly tip all the different colours into one box… *ahem*, sorry, might have gotten a bit carried away there.
I guess that might make for quite a boring movie though, right? Pfft. I guess that’s why I don’t write movies.