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Originally published Thursday, November 4, 2010 at 3:01 PM

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Movie review

'Megamind': a superhero/criminal genius with no staying power

A review of the animated feature "Megamind," with an all-star voice cast that includes Will Ferrell, Brad Pitt and Tina Fey. Artful animation, a funny premise ... but no staying power.

Seattle Times movie critic

Movie review 2.5 stars

'Megamind,' with the voices of Will Ferrell, Brad Pitt, Tina Fey, Jonah Hill, David Cross. Directed by Tom McGrath, from a screenplay by Alan Schoolcraft and Brent Simons. 95 minutes. Rated PG for action and some language. Several theaters.

The animated comedy "Megamind" should be more memorable than it is; it's got a funny premise, a fine voice cast and often artful animation. So why am I struggling to recall much about it? Perhaps there have been a few too many spoofy animated films lately, in the "Shrek" school; perhaps kids will enjoy this one more than adults looking for something unique.

Here, the title character (voiced wickedly by Will Ferrell) is a superhero/criminal genius; raised in a "prison for the terminally gifted," he's got a head that rivals Helena Bonham Carter's in "Alice in Wonderland" and a comic way of mispronouncing things. Megamind's nemesis is the guy who, in most movies, would be the hero: Metro Man (Brad Pitt), a white-caped crusader with a Jay Leno chin and a pompadour. Which one will save Metro City, and win the heart of TV reporter Roxanne Ritchi (Tina Fey)?

All of this plays out without quite as much glee as it should, and I found myself distracted by trying to guess the celebrity voices (Pitt sounds oddly like George Clooney) and wondering why Roxanne was given such an exaggerated hourglass figure. But there are funny moments along the way — Megamind, after an injury, moans "Oh, my giant blue head" — and the whole thing occasionally has a "Wizard of Oz"-style prettiness, as we see tiny characters dwarfed by the sparkling surfaces of Metro City. But it's one of those movies that disappears too quickly, leaving memories of better ones in its wake.

Moira Macdonald: 206-464-2725 or mmacdonald@seattletimes.com

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