This weekend I had an excellent cinematic experience. I planned to head to the mall and see Splice (which I'm dying to see), but the timing just wasn't working out, so I sat my out-of-town visitor down to introduce him to the world of Netflix. After going back and forth between Chaplin and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, we chose the latter. I still remembered Todd Gilchrist's review and Weinberg's brief-but-ebullient rant, and I was itching for some family-style laughs.
What I didn't expect, but was blissfully surprised to experience, was a film that skillfully intermingled smarts and silliness, and best of all -- another awesome and animated female co-star, the perfect cohort to Up's Ellie. When not killing myself over Flint Lockwood's hand scanner, the food jokes, or noting the fact that the hero has the same name as Michael Moore's Flint, Michigan, I was falling in love with Sam Sparks -- an endlessly appealing character who starts off as cliche, but learns to bite her thumb at antiquated notions of girls and science.