The Lego Movie – Niki Wagner


While watching The Lego Movie, I noticed a few things. I noticed that the movie contained a lot of product advertising. This advertising was done to promote the Lego brand itself while also promoting other films like Star Wars, Batman, and Superman which all happen to be Lego characters as well. When they first started, the producers of the Lego Movie had no clue that it would go on to be a block buster hit or let alone, win an Academy Award.


A lot of films and television shows promote products in both commercials and product placement in order to pay for the production of the show. I’m not sure if it is just something that I notice a lot because I know to look for it or it is becoming increasingly common for shows to do product placement. Some of the show are more discreet about like The Mindy Project is with Target, Windows tablets and Cellphones and they don’t mention the product directly while it’s in plain site to the viewers. Other shows like Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, directly mention that a product placement is coming and mention it ahead of time to warn the audience. It is sort of difficult to analyze the advertising and direct product placement in The Lego Movie because really they are advertising their own product and that is not done very often.


The Lego Movie is a very cute, funny film but I think that it could be argued that they are using product placement to instill a desire/wish fulfillment trait into the movie. We live in a consumer society where almost everyone is buying or selling something. There is a belief that if you see a product enough times that you will remember it and will therefore start to desire it. I think that that notion is at work through out the film. According to the Storey text, there are two parts to the human psyche. These parts are known as the conscious and the unconscious of the brain. It is commonly known that the way that advertising works is that it taps into the unconscious with flashy signs and creates a desire for the product where there was not one before. I think that is what the Lego Movie did. It showed how much fun playing with Legos could be. They showed all the different characters that you can buy and all the different types of things you can build with the legos. In the end, they even showed that girls can play with Legos too by inviting Finn’s little sister down to play him and their dad.

I would have to say that the movie was not only a way to advertise the products but also to expand their brand even further. I think that it was a really creative way to tap into the public’s unconscious psyche without being too obvious. I think that The Lego Movies also shows how reliant our society is on consumerism with the idea that we even make movies portraying and advertising our products and no one thinks anything of it because it’s normal. While it is rare, Lego Movie is not the first film portraying products although they did seem to do the best job and have the most success. Overall, I really enjoyed the movie and I think that it was really creative. I kind of appreciate openness with their advertising because as an audience member, it made me feel less gullible because I knew what was going on and I didn’t feel taken advantage of.



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