Oh (Jim Parsons) is part of an alien race, known as the Boov, who have been on the run from their arch enemy, the technologically advanced Gorg, for as long the Boov can remember. Lead by Captain Smek (Steve Martin), the best of their species at running away from trouble, the Boov are proud of their cowardice. The Gorg relentlessly follow the Boov from planet to planet destroying every new home they inhabit. Unfortunately for humans, the Boov have targeted Earth as the next planet where they will take up residence and hopefully evade their pursuers once and for all.
Unpopular amongst his kind, Oh’s name is based on the exasperated expression muttered by other Boov when he makes suggestions or offers an opinion. As his species settles into their new earthly surroundings, using their suction tube technology to relocate the humans to a small section of Australia, Oh makes an error that could result in the Gorg learning their new location. Instead of owning up to his mistake, Oh flees to hide in the only human city left. It is here that he meets Gratuity ‘Tip’ Tucci (Rihanna), a young girl who is searching for her mother’s (Jennifer Lopez) relocation spot. Considering Oh needs help to escape, and Tip could use Oh’s knowledge to find her mom, the pair agree to join forces. However, neither of them are aware of the incredible journey they are about to embark on.
Director Tim Johnson creates an animated film that is entertaining for all ages. Home is well-paced and the action sequences come off smoothly. Tom J. Astle and Matt Ember’s script, adapted from Adam Rex’s book The True Meaning of Smekday, evokes plenty of laughs as it is peppered with subtle jokes for adults and clever lines that kids will appreciate. The story also features several good lessons regarding not judging people before you truly get to know them; and not blindly following leaders without critically questioning their decisions.
Jim Parsons gives a strong performance as Oh. He brings life to many of the Boov’s traits, such as their tendency to mess up human phrases, which could have grown tiresome in the wrong hands. Doing double duty playing Tip and creating the concept for soundtrack, Rihanna does memorable work in the film. She holds her own within a cast that features the consistently solid Steve Martin, who is quite good as the cowardly yet mean Captain Smek.
Home is an enjoyable film whose story and visuals will appeal to a wide audience. It is fast-paced and includes just enough smart dialogue to keep even the casual filmgoer engaged. Home is a film I can recommend.