“The Lego Ninjago Movie” (Warner Bros.)

Animated characters appear in the movie "The Lego Ninjago Movie." The Catholic News Service classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. (CNS/Warner Bros.)

By Catholic News Service

A few flashes of wit relieve the noisy tedium of this martial arts-themed animated adventure.

With his home town constantly under attack by his villainous father (voice of Justin Theroux), a schoolboy (voice of Dave Franco) leads a double life by battling bad Dad, disguised as a ninja warrior. He does so as part of a team of fighters trained by his wise and virtuous uncle (voice of Jackie Chan).

As directed by Charlie Bean, Paul Fisher and Bob Logan — the latter two also co-writers, along with four others — the attempt to blend a children’s feature and an action movie proves awkward, resulting in a forgettable series of explosions and other disturbances that drown out such themes as the possibility of personal conversion and the value of family reconciliation. Additionally, some vague mumbo-jumbo about humans harnessing the power of the elements is not for the easily confused.

Perilous situations, a bit of mild scatological humor, a couple of mature references. The Catholic News Service classification is A-II — adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG — parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

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