In this film publicity image released by Paramount and DreamWorks Animation, Roxanne Ritchi, voiced by Tina Fey, right, and Megamind, voiced by Will Ferrell, are shown in a scene from the animated feature "Megamind." (AP Photo/DreamWorks Animation, Paramount Pictures)

"Megamind" is another of those comic-satiric animated films that's tough to categorize, let alone recommend for a particular age group.

The repartee between characters and much of the visual humor seems geared to teenage and adult film buffs, with subtle allusions to movies all the way back to the silent masterpiece "Metropolis" (1927). Yet there seems to be enough silliness, both physical and verbal, to divert kids 10 and older. Younger than that, and "Megamind" may prove soporific.

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Does it work overall? Intermittently is the answer. Generally it's clever and witty, if less than thrilling. Occasionally it's dull.

Will Ferrell voices the title character, the hapless, blue, oblong-headed supervillain Megamind, who tries to terrorize Metro City (which he mispronounces as "Matrocity," as if "atrocity" followed the "m"). His archenemy is the superhero Metro Man (Brad Pitt). In a prologue, we learn that Megamind and Metro Man were both sent to Earth as babies, when their own planet system was destroyed. Megamind accidentally destroys Metro Man, but with no one to fight any more, he's lost. He also finds himself falling for TV reporter Roxanne Ritchi (Tina Fey), who, of course, hates him. Aided by his fish sidekick Minion (David Cross), Megamind abducts Roxanne's doofus cameraman Hal (Jonah Hill) and turns him into a new superhero, but Hal is kind of a jerk and instead acts like a bad guy.

The bottom line: The film is told in a flashback, starting as Megamind appears to be falling to his death. He also refers to "getting my butt kicked." Some of the action sequences, though animated, are a little intense, with explosions and large robotic fighters. We see what appears to be the skeleton of the vaporized Metro Man. Hal, once turned into a superhero, becomes a bully and a thief.


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