The Emoji Movie Fails As Left-Wing PropagandaGregory Lobo | November 27, 2018
On Tuesday night, I watched The Emoji Movie with my mother and my brother. I had seen it once before, and that was when I had gotten my idea about it. I saw through it as soon as I saw it. The Emoji Movie, MASSIVE SPOILERS AHEAD, is about a world of emojis, those little picture things on text messages. The way the emojis work is that when the person doing the texting texts an emoji, they have to go into this frame and they need to be captured making their appointed emoji face. The movie follows a “Meh” emoji who cannot act uninterested and his parents try to shelter him and keep him from work on the text box. He finally convinces them to let him go to work and he is called upon to be a “Meh” emoji. He panics and does a weird mix of different emojis. This causes the whole box to go into chaos.
When things finally die down, Smiler, the smiling emoji, and one of the creepiest characters I have ever seen in a movie, calls Gene, the “Meh” emoji main character, a “malfunction” and calls for him to be “deleted” from the phone, and sends bots to do her bidding. Gene decides that he wants to go get reprogrammed by a hacker so that he can survive, so he, accompanied by a couple of other emojis, decides to go to the hacker, through the phone. All the while, these bots are chasing him to delete him. In the end, Gene is taken by a bot who takes him to Smiler to have him deleted while his other friends escape. When the other emojis escape they go to save Gene, and, just as the bot is about to delete Gene, they save him. The boy with the phone, Alex, was finding all of these problems with the phone while all of this chaos was going on, because, well, it was chaos, so he goes to have his whole phone deleted. In desperation, Gene texts himself, unchanged, to Addie, Alex’s crush. When Alex realizes that Addie received a text from him, he stops his phone from being deleted. Gene, having saved all of the emojis, accepts who he is and is celebrated by the other emojis.
Something really interesting about this movie is that it was intended to be left-wing propaganda. Voice actor T.J. Miller explicitly said so, saying, “So this was an opportunity to do something optimistic, positivistic and you know, we have very few weapons in the current administration, and one of them is to target a younger demographic and try and help them understand and adopt progressive values.” As admitted by Miller, they wanted to indoctrinate children into leftism by making this movie. The irony is that they fail incredibly badly.
Let me back up a bit in my synopsis, to the beginning. What I had said before was, “Smiler, the smiling emoji, and one of the creepiest characters I have ever seen in a movie, calls Gene, the “Meh” emoji main character, a “malfunction” and calls for him to be “deleted” from the phone, and sends bots to do her bidding.” So here we have someone going on about a “malfunction”, and saying that that “malfunction” should be “deleted”. Maybe this is just me because I am a pro-life activist, especially focusing on how it connects to disability, but that whole concept sounds an awful lot like what is going on in Iceland, Denmark, France, and essentially every other country, with their Down Syndrome abortion rates and the fact that they seem pretty okay with it, the cultural acceptance of it being arguably the most disgusting part. Much of this is done and accepted in the name of “progressive values” and “giving the mother the right to choose”, while really creating a societally enforced expectation to abort in cases of fetal abnormality.
The interesting thing is that Miller talks about “progressive values” that the film promotes. By progressive, Miller means left-wing. He means the type of values that would accept this. This is where Miller is dead wrong. Unless people don’t know what goes on in doctor’s offices all around the world, where women are told to kill their baby because their baby has a disability, they have to see how this movie connects to the culture of death. This was doubtlessly not what the makers of this film intended, but, if watched with a certain interpretation, it could call attention to this atrocity being committed by doctors everywhere, even a cultural atrocity in a way. That’s the thing about art. It can be consumed through many different lenses and can give people ideas about it, even if those were not the intended ideas presented. Even though this was not the intent, for someone who knows what is going on, the way this movie portrays such a similar thing is something that can be used to think about it and maybe to spark a conversation with those who do not. For this reason, The Emoji Movie is really unintentionally pro-life, and I really appreciate it for what it is, even though it did not intend to be that way.