Sure, The Emoji Movie never sounded like a good idea, but if there’s anything Hollywood has has proven in the past decade, it’s this: flagrant cash-grabs can be salvaged when the right talent is given enough creative control — 21 Jump Street, The Lego Movie, 22 Jump Street.
Okay, I’m just talking about movies made by Chris Miller and Phil Lord.
The Emoji Movie isn’t made by Miller and Lord, and that is immediately obvious from the trailer, which appears to superficially borrow from their work without quite getting its deeper appeal.
The pitch is nearly as generic as its title.
The trailer ends with two Poo Emoji shouting, “We’re number two!” That may be the trailer’s most meta joke, an unintentional act of self-critique.