Penguins of Madagascar Vs Minions

Hello, Spongey here.

It’s time for another Movie Battle! This is a series where I compare two movies of similar quality to see which one I like more. I liked how the Princess and the Frog/Tangled turned out so I will do more.

I promise I’ll throw in Live Action at some point but for now, more animation. This time it’s Dreamworks Vs Illumination, oh boy. But first, some backstory. One thing Studios like do is take a Supporting character from a work and give them the spotlight in their own series or movie.

This is usually a bad idea for obvious reasons. We like those characters because they are supporting so giving them the spotlight sometimes ruins the point of the character. It can work sometimes but for every Finding Dory there’s a Cars 2, or Planet Sheen.

And within the past few years, two sets of characters from hit franchises got their own films that are similar in terms of how they approach things but different with how they did. First, The Penguins of Madagascar from well…the Madagascar series got the treatment in 2014.

I reviewed the movies so you know that I really like them and feel they were the highlights with how they work like a spy team. They got a Nicktoon and I was personally fan. I thought it was an example of this kind of thing done right with how it fleshed them out further and created some fun episodes.

Adding King Julien helped, but I haven’t seen his show so don’t ask how I feel yet. It’s worth nothing the show is set on an alternate continuity from the movies (Word of God said so) which is why the film ignores and it starts where the 3rd film left off.

The movie came in a bit late hence why it was sadly another Box Office Disappointment for Dreamworks. But The Boss Baby was a hit, life’s not fair. On the bright side, it got Decent reviews. (Even if the RT consensus is oddly kinda negative despite the 72 score. Same happened in reverse recently wit Cars 3. Proof RT is bullcrap).

In the other corner, we have the Minions from the Despicable Me Franchise and their film from just a year later. I’m a bit more mixed in these characters. They can be fun with their simple comedy ways but aren’t the most interesting and worked better in the first DM film than some other places.

The Critical reaction was more mixed for this one…only this time the RT Consensus is closer to positive with the Score being a Rotten 56. Did I mention RT is Garbage? But in contrast, this film was a bit more of a hit. How?

It grossed over a billion dollars. It’s the 2nd highest grossing animated film of ALL TIME. (Even these guys couldn’t topple Frozen). Yeah. Now, I was an odd positron going into both films. With the first, I was a fan of the characters but since the show was over (minus the episodes Nick held on too because…Nick) so I wasn’t as hyped as I would be if it was the hype of their popularity.

The Minions Movie was made at a time when I was getting sick of them due to how…out of hand the usage of them had gotten. You know why, the ads, the products, the awful Facebook posts. I didn’t even like the idea of the film frankly so I was more mixed going on. However, in both cases I tried to enjoy as best as I could and since they are appearing on here, I find both to have similar good qualities.

I won’t reveal my full thoughts on them as a whole until we get to the big categories, as this case is more complicated then the previous Movie Battle. Both films focus more on Comedy involving their leads than a real story, so it makes perfect sense compare them.

And yes, the upcoming DM 3 made me want to do this now. I promise the next one won’t be a tie in like this. After watching both twice now, so it’s time to take a deeper look at them than most to see which one is did the better job at giving some these side characters the spotlight.

Which was more enjoyable? Time to take a look, putting away all biases and give them each a fair shot. It’s gonna be a fun one.

This, is Penguins of Madagascar Vs Minions

BEST ANIMATION:

I normally won’t compare animation in these because of how a lot of it comes to personal preference but for one, I needed an extra category and 2nd, both sum up how both studios handle animation in their films.

Now, both films are just keeping the style from their franchises so I can’t really praise or bash either too much for just keeping what they felt worked. But there are minor differences here and there which is why I’ll go into detail.

Both are of course very cartoon, especially Penguins. The designs are done in a way to fit the goofy tone and they move very quickly. The Madagascar made more of an attempt to look pretty as they went on but this dials it back a bit to focus more on the quick movements.

There are nice locations, fun action sequences and Dave the Octopus is really cool with his moments, especially in his human disguise. It doesn’t look as good as Madgascar 3 but it has a nice cartoon-y-ness to it while still being appealing. That’s what Dreamworks mostly is able to do especially in this series.

Illuminations has been criticized pretty heavily for the look of it’s films and I can see why. Minions technically is really nice looking good. The character animation is pretty comptent and the locations are well crafted and it’s clear a lot effort goes into the animation itself.

But the actual look of the film is kind of dull. The locations are just there. We have an ice cave, a palace and a dungeon where the Minions almost get hanged. …More on that later. It’s all technically well done but nothing truly pops out.

Illumination’s focus as usually been on stuff like the characters themselves and on things like the technology they use, it’s especially noticeable in these movies and Secret Life of Pets on the character front.

That’s fine and the main Minions look distint enough but the rest don’t. Seriously, they have 3 default designs for them and that’s it. When you look at a crowd, you can’t tell them apart unless they are wearing something different which is cheating.

Given the backstory of them (oh, we’ll get to that too) it makes no sense for only like 3 varitions of the same design to exist. The humans have the weird thing where they all look “quirky” with big noses even the ones that are meant to be normal. Illumination always does this, even on the Owner in Pets who isn’t weird at all.

It works okay here for someone like Scarlett I suppose but not the background humans. Now, none of this really matters as the animators did a fine job but it’s minor things like this that make the film blend into the background visually.

Penguins looks simpler than some of it’s predecessor yes but the character animation and how things move makes it stand out and makes you remember it. There’s plenty of fast quick movement in Minions but there’s as much in terms of good timing with it, it’s just stuff happening quickly.

I’m not gonna act like Penguins is artistic by any means and Minions is technically well made but in terms of overall design and movement, this style works a lot better in Penguins and just leaves more an impression.

At first it was a tough call, but after looking deeper into it, I’m picking Penguins. I don’t want be too hard on Minions are like I said, it’s more of Illumination’s problem then that exact movie but Penguins also keeps a style that the studio established so there you go.

WINNER: Penguins of Madagascar

BEST SUPPORTING CHARACTERS:

These films are literally about supporting characters but even these writers know they need their own supporting cast bounce off off and both created some kind of sort of interesting original characters.

Penguins of Madagascar has the North Wind and the villain, and that’s pretty much. North Wind is this other spy team that helps the penguins, doesn’t like them but has to team up eventually as the Penguins prove to be better.

They’re there. They exist to do what I just said and they can get some amusing moments, especially Bendict Cumberbatch but for the most part, they just kind of exist. One is a nice Polar bear, one is Ken Jeong (Wait, Ken Jeong….Nice Polar Bear….AAAAAAAAA FLASHBACKS), and one gets crushed on by Klowaski.

They do their job but don’t leave too much of an impression. The villain Debbie-i mean Dave though, is decently memorable. As I said, his animation is pretty cool and he’s another one of though highly comedic and fun villains.

He also has a decent backstory which isn’t that deep but at least gives him some kind of depth and his “Arc” ends in a good way since it has a decent joke that comes with it. He’s not one of my favorite Dreamworks Villains or anything but he is the best character in the movie.

Minions is interesting with how the supporting characters get almost as focus while still being upstaged sometimes, at least on a writing level. Of course there’s Scarlett Overkill and her husband Herb. She’s very over the top and as a result, actually pretty entertaining.

Herb is just kind of there but I like their weird relationship where they actually do seem to love each other. Scarlett is a bit odd on a writing level though. She’s given a motivation for why she wants to do all this but the writers have trouble balance her implied good moments and her evil-ness.

I get that she’s supposed to be evil (we see that when she tells the Minions to get the crown or she’ll pretty much kill them) but some nice moments work almost too well which makes it a bit jarring when she is just full on evil by the end.

But then she ends on an unironic nice moment which is just weird given everything that came before. Penguins did the same thing but added a joke onto it, as I said, which made it work. Still, I can still enjoy her.

As far as other characters go, the only ones of note would be this family that the Minions get a ride from. The family turns out to be an evil family on their way to Evil Con as well. And they are the best thing about the movie.

Seriously, the joke where they are revealed to be evil was the biggest laugh I got because I actually didn’t see it coming. And besides that, I like how nice they are to the Minions and I’m amused by one of the evil family members being voiced by Charlene Doofenshmirtz herself.

And of course after Evil Con, we never see them again. If we do, it’s telling that I forgot. As much as I like them, I kind of wish the whole movie about them rather than Scarlett, or hell even the Minions.

It would be like The Incredibles, except everyone is Syndrome! Make it happen!

Both films happen to have cameos from a character in their franchise. In Penguins it’s King Julian and Mort, in a post credits scene that is amusing enough. Kind of odd Julien has his VA from the TV Show while everyone has their movie actor.

Minions has Gru, in my favorite part of the whole movie. I like exactly how and why he pops up and it was an unexpected surprised, mostly because it wasn’t spoiled in the trailer like everything else. (Well, it was in the Honest Trailer that I foolishly watched before seeing the movie but whatever).

I just wish they maybe built up to him on a story level. Yeah, it’s about finding a master but Gru literally just appears out of nowhere, with no explanation of why he’s there other than we need the actual best part of the franchise in this.

I wish he was in more of it, maybe explore how the Minions found him and stuff. Maybe the sequel (Ugggggh) will explore it but whatever. Either way, Gru’s part was pretty cool on it’s own.

So which is better? Hmmm…I’m actually picking Minions. The supporting cast is fine and has less writing issues but they don’t leave a big impact besides Dave. Minions has some more memorable side characters who have their writing issues but are at least fun to watch and the fact that I wanted more of some shows that they did something right.

It is close call as one has supporting players that are competent but not that memorable and the other has some that are memorable and funny but either aren’t written that well or aren’t in it enough.

But in terms of being enjoyable and leaving some impact to an extent, I’ll pick Minions if only for that family. They aren’t in it a lot but they were unexpected and funny, which is always a good thing.

Close call, but I pick the one I simply enjoy a tad more in this case. So there you go.

WINNER: Minions

BEST WRITING:

Okay, I normally would put this last. But the thing is, both movies focus more on the humor and the leads than the story, which is totally fine. But that means there’s no point in covering it last so, here we go.

I’ve got a lot to say on both fronts because of how they approach. However, I will not talk about the writing in regards to the leads and/or their development. Only in terms of the stoy itself, got it?

Okay, first Penguins as there is shockingly little to say on it’s own. The actual story is pretty simple. Dave wants to make Penguins ugly because of his backstory and the Penguins team up with the North Wind to do so and action and hilarity ensues.

This film mostly focuses on the action and the arc it has with Skipper and Private I’ll say more about later. As a result, the story can seem kind of weak as there isn’t a whole to it and not much if amazingly memorable.

But it is effective as at least the action is fun and we do get clear arcs for some characters, with motivations. As goofy as it is, at least remembered to throw in that. That can be a bad thing for some, as the fact that it has elements makes the fact that the story is just “eh” stand out more.

But at the same time, they do wisely keep it simple and nothing is too confusing or distracting. The best part of the movie in terms would actually be the opening.

It starts with their backstory with them meeting as kids, as we establish that Skipper is unhappy with the conformity going around and they all try to get this egg in danger, that turns out to be Private. It does a very good job of establishing the tone with the humor of action, as well as the characters and why they do what they do.

The stuff after it cuts to the present is pretty good, but once Arctic Wind shows up, it becomes a tad more hit or miss. Still enjoyable but not quite as much. The problem with being simple is that it does drag in the mid section, although it perks up again in the climax.

As for Minions, the story is similarly simple. The Minions wanted a master and find one in Scarlett Overkill who wants them to get this crown. That in itself is fine. The problem I have is that it often gets distracted.

A lot of the movie is less about moving plot, and more about the Minions doing…stuff. Some of it at the start is fine to establish who they are but the part where they walk around a city goes on forever and there’s a lot of parts like that.

But the odd thing about the story is that it has flat out problems with logic in some parts. I shouldn’t be thinking the logic of a silly comedy like this. Bob becomes King of England after a crazy chase scene, because he…pulled the sword from the stone.

Yes, it happened not only be real, but right in the open has no one has tried to pull it before now I guess and the Queen of England is just ready to give the crown to this little guy because he pulled a sword.

It makes no sense and the best part is that this just an excuse for more jokes with the Minoans doing stuff. It does give Scarlett an easy way to get power after she betrays them again. Speaking of, she betrays them again so fast that it’s almost like her reversing the previous turn was pointless.

Yeah, see what I mean? Despite it being simple, it still manages to have these writing problems. You’ll see later if the humor makes up for it, but on it’s own the writing is not that good.

There are some good ideas, I like that it’s set in the 60’s as it sets it apart from other kid’s movies and it gives the movie a decent Soundtrack. Granted, it doesn’t do much with the 60’s setting aside from aesthetic things but ah well.

And as I said, Gru’s cameo was neat, as was that family.

(Oh, and despite both films being short, Minions feels the need to have more mid credits scenes than Guardians 2 and a post credits with the cast dancing that goes on FOREVER. I mean, are you that desperate to keep me here?!)

But overall, the writing is kind of weak. The simple story is fine but it gets sidetracked sometimes with odd plot holes and a lot is just Minions doing things.

Penguins of Madagascar keeps itself simple and manages to actually tell a story. It is mostly just a big silly cartoon but it at least tries to have a story. Minions similarly keeps itself simple but doesn’t offer a whole lot in terms of the actual story and keeps itself distracted a bit too much.

The story isn’t important in either but I think Penguins did a better job of balancing the simple story with the Comedy than Minions which doesn’t quite get it right, most of the time.

At first glance it seems both are about the same in terms of how they handle the script but when I watched them both twice now and anazle them, it clear Penguins handles the writing better by being more focused and having at least an attempt at depth.

So yeah, there you go.

WINNER: Penguins of Penguins of Madagascar

And finally, the element both films favor other the script:

BEST LEADS/HUMOR:

Since these films are titled after their leads and are Comedies, we’ll do this last as well as both in one go since there’s not a ton to say about the humor itself.

Penguins of Madagascar has what you’d expect from Madagascar, including slap tack and wordplay. The wordplay humor is honestly the best humor in the film as even when it’s cheesy, it is amusing.

Most of the characters get some good lines and there are some fun interactions, even with the less interesting characters. Nothing is quite hilarious but there is a steady stream of decent jokes.

There’s a running gag involving actor’s names that is way funnier than it should have been, especially after Escape From Planet Earth tried a similar gag. My faovirte joke was the fact the Penguins left Alex and his crew because….they were sick of Afro Circus.

Yes, really. That freaking killed me.

The biggest flaw in the humor is just a lack of it in some parts. Sometimes the laughs dry up which is sad as sometimes there’s a good stream of them.

Till, the humor does work and it is what makes the film work, mostly

The humor in Minions is of course a lot more slapstick based, being as silly and over the top as possible. It works sometimes like with certain characters I mentioned, and even the Minions can have their moment, mostly with how some people bounce off time.

However, since it so much silly-ness and spends a lot of time just doing stuff, the humor can get really old really fast. There’s only so many times you can see the Minions just…do stuff before it gets tiring.

I can see some finding it funny but some of it just felt like noise to me. Certain other problems in terms of writing don’t quite help either as the humor being tiring plus the writing being off doesn’t make for the best viewing experience.

There’s one odd element to the humor some like and some don’t: There’s some dark jokes in it. And by that I mean we get a montage of the Minions causing the deaths of their masters. Yes, really.

I’m all for dark humor/moments in kids movies…but it felt so off here. The humor is so silly and safe most of the time that it just feels jarring in a bad way. Plus, how do we root for characters who cause so many casualties? Keep in mind, only some were evil and for all we know, this version of Dracula is nice as the one in Hotel Transylvania! (Speaking of, how are do the Minions not know that sunlight is bad for vampires?).

(On another side note, another dark joke involves Herb trying to hang the Minoans. Yes really. And it fails due to their shape. YOU CAN[‘T KILL THE MINIONS)

So yeah, in terms of humor, it’s mostly harmless but also mostly shallow. Now onto the leads we’ve come to see. First, let’s compare the origins. For the Penguins it’s simple. They grew up in the Arctic, became a spy team and eventually get to New York which the rest is history.

Nothing too complicated. My only question is, if they left Antarctica because Skipper didn’t like the conformity, why did they want to go there in the first movie? But that’s overlookable.

The Minions are meant to be a different species entirely which was part of the fun of them, as you have no idea what they really are. But ignoring the fact that the first Despicable Me implied Gru created them, the backstory this movie reveals makes no sense.

Okay, so Minions existed long before humans and I guess are immortal? I mean, are the minions we see early on the same as the ones in the cave that the main trio leaves behind? Did those earlier Minions die with new Minions coming like how how all over species work ?

Infact, do Minions…reproduce? Are there female Minions? Do they even have genders? ARE THE MINIONS IMMORTAL?!

I know this doesn’t matter a whole lot but if you can’t buy into the explanation of the origin of the main characters, it kind of takes you of the movie. The Minions are oddly complicated in this.

But now onto the leads themselves. The Penguins aren’t too deep in general but perhaps there could have been more to them. The show did a good job of fleshing them out but there isn’t as much in the movie.

But there’s at least something. Let’s go over and see what I can tell you about them, only going off this movie.

Skipper: He’s the leader and he doesn’t like just following the crowd. He has a bit an ego sometimes and he really likes Private but sometimes underestimates him because he’s cute. He learns to give Private more chances to be awesome.

Private: He’s cute and isn’t always respected because of it. But it turns out he can help out a lot, even with his cute looks.

Klowaski: He’s the brains, and has a tendency to be brutality honest which can make him seem a bit careless sometimes.

Rico: He throws up stuff.

Yeah, not a ton of depth but you can get some sort of personalty out of each which I like The Skipper/Private arc is decent. It’s nothing we’ve never seen before but leads to some nice moments. Again, nothing groundbreaking but it has it’s heartwarming momenta and I’m glad they included a clear arc somewhere in it.

Now let’s talk about the Minions and do the personality thing again:

Kevin: He’s the leader. ….That’s it, he rolls at his at dumb stuff at some points but that is it.

Bob: He’s cute and at first they don’t think he should go but they’re like why not. He becomes king because reasons and that’s about it.

Stuart: He…uh…um….exists?

The Minions or more less joke machines there really is not much to them. To be fair, they try to establish arcs very early on in the scene where they leave the cave to find a master but those arcs vanish once the plot starts.

Seriously, outside of a few very breif moments, there’s no attempt at depth ever again. I’m not asking for anything Shakespearean, just something other than small moments that don’t go anywhere.

I mean, the Minion form a bond with a villain that betrays them, this should feed into some kind of arc with them but not really. I can at least tell you something 2 of them but their characters don’t go any deeper than what I said.

In a movie like this it’s not a huge deal but even Penguins gave me something to them which gave me a reason to care in some way. If you care about the Minions in this movie, fine but I didn’t because they are just joke machines in this film and it gets tiring after awhile.

That’s the big reason I find Minions to be just….eh. The title characters are not interesting and can’t hold up a full film. Their simple antics work fine in shorts or as supporting but in a full film it gets old and they don’t add enough to make me care.

Penguins of Madagascar doesn’t make it leads THAT much more interesting than before but it does keep them intact somewhere, even if some elements are kind of forced to make the plot work.

The leads in that film just come across as more fleshed out and importantly, more enjoyable to watch for 80 minutes than the rambling twinkes. This is all a long way of saying that the humor of Penguins of Madagascar is more varied and the leads offer a bit more and the film justifies it’s concept better.

Neither is ground breaking on either level but to me, Penguins stands taller by being funnier with better written leads. So thus it gets the final point.

WINNER: Penguins of Madagascar

With Minions only getting 1 point and Penguins getting 3 points, it’s pretty clear who wins here.

OVERALL WINNER: Penguins of Madagascar

Yeah, I know I said I wanted to avoid curb stomp battles but both are in the same league in terms of putting humor over story and it’s not like Penguins is amazingly better. Plus, since I originally saw both I preferred Penguins and wanted to really find out why.

And now I know. Minions isn’t really bad per say but I liked it even less on a 2nd viewing. As we’ve seen, as it has some amusing moments/elements but as a whole, it really does feel like a pilot for a Saturday Morning Cartoon on Nickelodeon (They did make a cartoons for the Minions of Gaming after all…) that somehow got stretched to 80 plus minutes.

Penguins is also kind of a stretched cartoon episode at times but at least has the excuse of following an actual TV series and at least had more to on a writing level.

Penguins is hardly a ground breaking film and when it comes to Dreamworks films that give the supporting the spotlight, Puss in Boots is waaaay better (Where’s that sequel, by the way?) but if you just turn your brain off a bit, you can have some goofy fun with it.

Minions has it’s moments but even by the standards of a film like it, it has no reason to exist. They tried but they could have tried harder. Again, Penguins managed to have an arc with the leads, so there’s no excuse.

I can’t be too hard on Minions since it’s not awful, and I’d rather watch it on a 24 hour loop than even look at the lemmings again. But still, it’s not good and my least favorite fully animated Illumination film so far (Because overall, it’s still better than Hop).

I did mostly to show how two films that seems pretty much the same due their goal but can still be different in execution. Again, both are the same artistically but in terms of my honest opinion, Penguins is full on Decent while Minions is …Average.

So there you go, a further look into two films no one has given much thought of after their releases. This is likely the closest you’ll get to the Curb Stomp Battle in this series so I hope you enjoyed.

I didn’t want to make it seem like Penguins is amazing or Minions is crap, it just became clearer which one I liked more as I wrote this. Still, these are fun to make. Shoot me any Movie Battle ideas you have. Especially Live Action ones, these won’t all be animated.

I’ll only say one more thing: I’ll take both films over what my next Scene by Scene Review will cover. Ugh. Until next time, Minions 4 Life out!

…I mean See ya.

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General Review: Cars 3

Pixar would never make a 3rd film after the critical failure of 2”-Me, January 2014 (Planes Review)

Hello, Spongey here.

General review time again and this time we have this years Pixar entry. And it’s in what is clearly their best beloved franchise. Yeah, to follow up on a sequel people actually really liked, we have one that was faced with skepticism from Day 1.

On the bright side, they have another film later in the year with Coco so chances are if this one isn’t good enough, we’ll have an Inside Out/Good Dinosaur situation. But first, this.

Pixar’s franchise has of course had kind of mixed reception with the first being their first less than seller reviewed film since A Bug’s Life and the 2nd being their only film to be considered “Rotten”.

Unless you’re one of those people who think anything below a “10/10” is a “0/10” but whatever. Then there those Planes movies which we agreed to never speak of again. I took a look at them along with all the Pixar films at them way back in 2012 but it had been so long I decided to re-visit them.

Cars 1 is certainly flawed being overlong (Seriously, did you ever notice the film is an Hour 48 minutes without credits/epilogue) with some tired cliches it has a lot of that Pixar heart all over the place and it’s clear this was a passion project on John Lasster’s part.

I consider in the same level as the other B level Pixar films that all mostly are a high B what they get right.

As for Cars 2, I stick by what I’ve said before, I’m just more aware of the flaws. But I still maintain that if you think it’s actually “Awful” then you need to watch the many actually awful animated films out there, not even counting the ones released after that one.

Despite the reaction to it and the spin off, we have our third one to hopefully close out the epic trilogy. A lot of people were confused by this movie existence and at first it does seem odd as while Cars 2 made a profit, it hurt their reputation a bit too much to push forward.

But think of it this way: Their other recent films like Inside Out were a way to make up for their mistakes. But going back to the Cars franchise to do another good one there would be directly fixing their mistakes. See?

Then came the advertising, oh boy. The first trailer shows Lightning McQueen in a wreck and it was played very seriously, leading to tons of memes about him being dead. But more importantly, it made people think they were going in a darker direction with this one.

While we weren’t quite sure about that, we did know this would be going back to the routes of the first film which was all about simple small town life and character development instead of all that crazy spy nonsense.

That’s why I was looking forward to this, it seemed like a return to form and an interesting story in general. The reviews are coming in and it’s odd, the reviews are about what I expected: On par with the first one in terms of what people actually think, with a dash of being glad it’s not Cars 2.

But the RT percentage is 67 which is lower than the first one and all the “B” level Pixar films I mentioned. Yeah, The consensus is even decently positive, a bit too much for a mere 67. And that kids is why Rotten Tomatoes is pure garbage.

I’m not too worried given how people received other recent Pixar films. Did I ever rant about how this strange idea that Pixar has to make a 10/10 master piece every time or it’s a 0/10 garbage heap?

Well, if you want more on that someone I follow did a piece talking about that I highly recommend: https://kylelovesanimationnmore.wordpress.com/2017/01/21/pixar-generalizations-and-complaints-that-i-dont-like/

Anyway, quick look at the creative team. This is the director’s debut after working on some other Pixar films and of the 3 writers, one did nothing, one did Sports movies and one is is a Pixar veteran to the point where he voiced Dug in Up.

With everything leading up to this, while this makes up for Cars 2 and cross the finish line, or insert Car pun here? Let’s find out.

This, is Cars 3

NOTE #1: I really enjoyed the short, Lou, for this one. The concept of a living lost and found box is….weird and makes no sense but it’s really creative with what Lou does and even had some well done heart. It’s weird but another fun short.

NOTE #3: Usually I break my animated reviews down Ani-Mat style to keep things focused but this time, I’m not doing because I had too much to say about the writing and barely anything to say about the other sections. That’s normal but so much that I had to ditch them. Hopefully I can bring it back for the next one.

Spoilers, a Pixar movie looks good. These parts will be graded at the end.

WRITING:

Lighting McQueen is starting to be outdone by newer racers such as Jackson Storm and after a bad crash he’s ready to give up. But after some motivation, he decides to train in order to get back on track. But can he do it or is as washed up as everyone says he is?

They said this would go back to the roots of the first film and they did as the script is similar in terms of pros and cons. Not in plot, thankfully it’s not a rehash. First off, this movie really wants to make us forget Cars 2 happened.

It’s never so much as lightly referenced here, you can flat out watch 1 and 3 alone and not feel lost. As cool as that is, I wish perhaps they gave it’s few fans a bone or two. But that’s not a big deal.

I mentioned the pacing and length of the first film and that very much applies here. It’s not as long but much like the first film, it is longer than you may expect and is more deliberately paced.

The film takes a lot more to establish the situation and show how Lightning is progress and all that good stuff, just like how they showed him getting used to the town in the first film. It really shows just how oddly different Cars 2 was, that one arguably went against the themes of the first while this actually keeps and even builds on them.

However, I want to start with the negatives because the one negative about it slowing down like the film is that it now has the issues it had. Overall, I would call this a good movie and a return for the franchise but it does come with flaws that are kin d of just personal.

As I said, the pacing is deliberate. Despite the higher stakes plot, it takes it slow showing every step of how he trains to get back on top. But like the first, it leads to some padding and it makes the film longer than it needs.

I will admit I was zoning on sometimes in the mid section because it felt like it was a tad too slow for my tastes. Not so much so that I was bored, as the general situation and all that kept me invested but man, did they need to spice it up.

The film is a tad stuck tonally. The first was a slower story that still fit in Comedy, making it feel a bit less serious than most Pixar films but still kept their attention to story. Cars 2 is a full on action comedy.

This is closer to the first but it needed more Comedy or more serious moments. I wouldn’t call it a “Drama” but any means but it doesn’t quite mix in things enough to be the perfect blend like the Toy Story movies or even most of Cars 1.

I’m saying if you’re expecting a very serious film, or one that will make you laugh a lot, you won’t quite get that. Sure, tons of movie, even animated ones go for a simpler feel without being really dramatic or comedic.

I’m happy when a film does that and to an extent this does it well (I still like the film after all) but it could have been done better and just simply had either more comedy or more heavy hitting scenes/elements.

But like the first one, this is also a strength. It has elements clearly for kids but is able to be calmer and more thoughtful so that adults can get some appreciation. I personally never got why some think Cars 1 or even this one is dumbed down as I feel both films are family films.

The first film has more elements of kid appeal, or immaturity (“He did what in his cup?”), making this feel closer in tone to what Pixar does best. Lightning’s story is well told here. Yes, it is cliché like the original movie, it’s very Rocky Sequels-esque in terms of story.

But again, just like the first it does it for a reason, as this is a perfectly reasonable direction to take the franchise. High Tech rookies like Jackson are taking over and even flat out replacing his fellow racers with one having to retire as he can’t keep up.

On top of that, Jackson is beating him lately and everyone is saying Lightning is washed up compared to him. Then the crash happens, and this is the straw that breaks the …Car version of a Camel’s break.

It’s well thought out in thae way, setting up exactly WHY Lightning feels down and wants to get better. Heck, they compare this directly to Doc’s crash and how everyone pretty much he was done instead of giving him another chance.

I saw one reviewer claim Lightning is a dick as he just lost “one race” and is all down but uh…i hate to claim someone “clearly didn’t watch the movie” but….they clearly didn’t pay attention. See, I worded it differently.

The go out of their way to show why he feels like this, there’s a lot of factors. His fellow racers are being replaced, they don’t think he has it anymore and he was in a bad crash. That’s more than enough to make one think lowly of themselves and want to improve.

I’m not looking deep, this was clearly shown on screen, they spent the whole first act establishing this! I’m just saying, you should pay more attention before you make certain claims.

I will say one scene with Cruiz makes him waaay too dick-ish. I get why he feels this way but it wasn’t handled that well.

The best thing about this movie is Doc. Due to the death of Paul Newman, he was killed off between 1 and 2 but he only got one mentioned in 2 and that was it. It was a tad disappointing but they more than made up for it in this one.

Doc is in this a lot as Lightning is inspired by him in many ways. He wants to get back on top because the world turning their back on Doc made him the grump he became. Doc’s presence is felt here here and we get new clips of him using actual cut recordings of Paul Newman!

Doc was my favorite part of the first film as he helped bring in the heart and depth of the film and that applies here. It’s a really nice tribute they do and Doc helps motivation McQueen and it gives his journey depth.

This ties into the first film really well with where Lightning goes. Cruiz, Lightning’s trainer is a good character with how she wants to train him the modern way. She has a backstory that gives her depth which makes her likable and the best new character.

The climax takes an interesting direction that may divide some and perhaps can be seen as predictable in a way but I didn’t quite see it coming just because my mind was in other places by the time we got there.

I think it works really and makes perfect sense with this story. Although they do kind of cheat the conclusion a bit. Oh and yes, the story does lead to some good heartwarming moments. Oddly enough, nothing hit me too hard./

My heart was warmed at points but nothing came close to say, the Our Town sequence for example. That’s not a big deal but I was perhaps expecting a tad more given certain elements.

Oh, and yes, Mater is pushed back. They “Jar Jar’d the shit out of him” as Brad Jones put it. However, I think he still works pretty well. He gets one dumb but he’s as innocnectly loveable as I honestly think of.

I’m not sure where the idea of him being an asshole comes from as even in 2 he wasn’t trying to hurt anyone for the most part. He actually gets a really nice scene with Lightning which even helps forward the plot.

As a fan, I can say he was done well. Toned down yes, but still makes an impact in his way. ….That’s more than I can say for the other original supporting characters. Yeah, a lot of people didn’t like that certain characters stayed behind for Cars 2 but that had a better excuse due to being a Mater movie.

Some at least helped out in the climax. Here, Sally gets a moment but everyone else just gets some lines. They appear but don’t add a whole lot. Mack, the John Ratzenburger role gets more to do than in 2 at least.

I can live with it as we got a whole movie about Radiator Springs and it’s residents but with how memorable they are, I wish the sequels had more of them.

And as for my last point, I oddly thought the animated stood out more in the others with how 1 gave us tons of great landscapes around the town and the 2nd went around the world. Yes, we get plenty to look out here and it’s a great world visually but oddly enough, I’d rate the animaton on the others a bit higher. Weird.

Overall, Cars 3 is good. It’s a much more worth follow up to Cars than the first sequel by bringing it back to it’s roots with a more grounded story and deliberate pace. Lightning’s story is a cliché but still effective with interesting themes adults may be interested in.

Making Doc important is a great touch too. At the same time, the pace can make a bit duller than it should be and they should have chopped off some of the training especially with how much time they spend with spoilers, a 2nd trainer.

I also wish the original supporting cast had more to and Jackson wasn’t simply a device to make Lightning feel bad. It’s weird, it’s almost like it was built to be be better with the first by being a tad more focused with less bad humor but to be honest…i still like Cars 1 more.

Both are almost equal and this likely had more heart going into it, but it hit me hader with it’s small town charm and fun cast. That Our Town Sequence is still classic Pixar gold. Cars 3 tries hard enough but it oddly doesn’t quite get to that.

But not for lack of trying. All in all, Cars 3 was a another solid effort that really made an effort to be a good family themes with things anyone can appreciate.

It may not be as “Deep” in terms of what it goes through as other Pixar films but it has so much heart in here, it’s hard for anyone that doesn’t some weird huge bias against Cars to get into it in some way.

If you liked either of the Cars films at all, you will like this one for it keeps what you liked while adding to it and bringing things full circle. Fans of the franchise will enjoy this, how much depends on your preferences.

If you didn’t flat out like either it really depends on exactly why you did or how much you dislike. Some may like this or some may not, but may appreciate it more. It’s one of those movies I’d recommend seeing in theaters only if you truly want to.

I think it’s worth it but more skeptical people may want to wait until DVD/Streaming. It’s worth watching on some level but you don’t have to see it if you’re not sure. But as a fan of the series, I liked it.

It’s the sequel I wanted out of Cars 2, being more thoughtful and clearly tries harder to be a real movie. I enjoy 2 as a guilty pleasure but at times the script felt like a Direct to Video spin off but 3 is a real follow up.

As usual, take that for what it’s worth.

Animation: B+

Writing: B

Characters: B

OVERALL: B

Sorry this review was so weird and different. I had a lot of thoughts on the movie and I feel like the Ani-Mat style was too constricting this time. Still, I stand by what I say in terms of how I feel the film is.

Hopefully next time we’ll be back to normal with another part 3. Only this one looks less promising, at least to me. Hopefully it’ll be good rather than despicable.

(Is anyone shocked I’m skipping Bayformers 5 next week?)

See ya.

Posted in General Reviews, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Bigger Fatter Liar

Bigger_Fatter_Liar

This movie isn’t a crappy retread!

Hello, Spongey here.

It’s now June so I think it’s time for our first review of a bad 2017 film. There isn’t quite as muc h to pick from but I think a good one to start us out with. Also, Monster Trucks wasn’t quite review-able enough.

We’re doing a Direct to Video film because it was on Netflix so it’s easy to bring it up for the 4 days I work on these reviews. But first a little history. In the early 2000’s, kids movies had this feel that made some of them perfect snark materiel.

We’ve looked at Clockstoppers and Max Keeble’s Big Move, and there was one I’ve always wanted to cover to finish the trilogy: Big Fat Liar. I saw it as a kid because it was the best Dad could find at the time.

It was about this kid that lied a lot, and due to a wacky misunderstanding, a sleazy Director takes the story from his class reports and turns it into a movie. No one believes the kid so he teams up with Amanda Bynes to get revenge.

I wanted to re-watch it for this review but I couldn’t find it in time so I couldn’t review it on it’s own anyway. Guess I’m glad…this thing exists. From what I can gather, the orginal was pretty dumb as per usual for the genre, but it did some kind of charm that gave it a sort of cult following.

Also, it was written by Dan Schneider. Yes, that one. Now the whole plot being about torturing someone makes sense, eh?

Anyone, the reason I’m talking about it now is that for some baffling reason, a couple months ago saw the release of a SEQUEL to a movie from 2002 so one who wasn’t a kid at the time remembers.

There’s a trend I’ve noticed of Direct to Video sequels to somewhat older movies, and they usually have nothing to do with the originals. Jingle all the Way 2, Kindergarten Cop 2 and now this.

I have no idea why they think people will watch sequels to films that have nothing to do with the previous film, but they keep making them. Hell, this one has the same writer as Kindergarten Cop 2!

This movie is so In Name Only that I will just call it what it is: A remake. I don’t care if the clapper thing in the blooper reel calls it “Big Fat Liar 2”, it’s a freaking remake! Now, there can be good remakes that respect the original materiel while adding to it, so this wasn’t quite DOA.

Nah, I waited to watch it before confirming that it sucks. It’s not the worst but it’s still bad and I needed a simple one for the month so I picked it. I mentioned the writer, so I’ll move on to the director…Ron Oliver.

Oh come on, Mostly Ghostly 3, now this?! What happened to to ya man? This makes Mostly Ghostly 3 look amazing by compassion! Ah well.

What exactly makes this pointless remake so mediocre? Am I lying about it’s lack of quality? Heck no, let’s see why it’s bad.

This, is Bigger Fatter Liar

The movie opens with the protagonist waking up, as he lies to his Dad about being fully ready for school. I’d comment on this but I’m distracted by one of the most annoying opening credits ever.

How can credits be annoying? Well, instead of having the names just appear like a normal movie, they come with these little animations and annoying sound effects. Most of them are video game sound effects because in this version it’s a game that gets taken, but it’s still really stupid to make your opening credits THIS distracting.

There’s nothing like this in the rest of the movie, so it’s not even a “Stylistic” choice. It’s just annoying. I’ve wasted a paragraph on the freaking credits!

Anyway, instead of Frankie Muniz we have that one guy from Best Friends Whenever. We already see he’s a big liar and his Dad is very aware of this. He sets up a weird thing no kid could create, that puts his clothes on for him quickly so his Dad believes he was ready.

That’s not really lying, he actually was ready, he just did it quickly. He tells his Dad he needs money for a class trip even though he also said so last week. Despite that, he’s Dad believes him because he’s an idiot.

Seriously, he JUST said he was skeptical on that previous lie for to experience but this is fine?

Kevin gets to school and we see he put a Handicapped Sign over a Visitor Parking sign in order to get a space in the parking lot. Well, he’s not instantly unlikable at all. He’s late and tells the teacher he was doing a top secret thing with the principal.

Instead of telling him that’s a load of shit, she just tells him to sit down. Is anyone going to act like a normal person here? That leads me to one big problem with the movie, Kevin himself. He’s supposed to kind of a likable jerk, but he really isn’t.

I can’t blame Ricky Gacia too much but he plays him like this really unlikable douche. His lies are never believable and he just puts on this face that makes you want to punch him immediately. This is more of a directing problem but it still effects the movie.

I get that the characters know he’s a liar before hand and aren’t supposed to really buy into it but he doesn’t even seem like he was good at it ever, he just does it a lot. His Dad bought a clear lie earlier, and he knows Kevin better than anyone from what I can see!

We’re only 3 minutes in.

One of these days you’re gonna get caught, you know”

Subtle.

That was from his female friend/”love interest”, played by Jodelle Ferland. She’s decent here but you never buy their friendship, at all. He’s a lying jerk, she isn’t. Next!

Kevin turned in a fake report he didn’t write and she thankfully suspects something and wants to call Dad to confirm he did it. More on that in a sec. Kevin orders Pizza that arrives at lunch and okay, this one I don’t get.

He’s not lying, he’s just being a jerk. And what school just allows this at all? A pizza guy shows up and they’re just like, okay, nothing wrong here. God, so many little things wrong in the first 5 minutes!

NOW IT’S TIME FOR YOUR BAD EXPOSITION OF THE DAY:

How long have we been friends?”

Since 3rd grade”

THIS HAS BEEN YOUR BAD EXPOSITION OF THE DAY.

Teacher calls Dad and Kevin somewhat makes it so the call goes to him and he uses a voice changing thing to pretend to be his Dad. The voice sounds fake as hell and at first it seems she bought it but a bit lit she reveals she’s not an idiot and calls Kevin up to the classroom along with Dad.

So there, we have one smart character. ONE.

He’s given one day to do the assignment or it’s Summer School. Also, he’s grounded for a month meaning no internet and thus no way to actually do it. He brings this up (and we all know how I feel about pointing out your problems) but they don’t say, plop him in a Library forcing to do this the old fashioned way.

Kevin does an idea, create a Video Game. Even though he’s shown no interest in gaming before this, at least not enough to make one. Needless to say, this movie knows as much about gaming as Game Shakers does.

The next day, he wakes a tad late and sees they put thingys on his car as he is grounded from that. Dad is not home meaning he has no way to get to school. And spoilers, him having to bike causes him to bump into a guy that steals his assignment, which not only makes him late but also assignment less.

Meaning this entire plot is Dad’s fault. Great going, father of the year!

We finally meet our villain, Mr Wolf, played by Barry Bostwick, to fulfill our wasted talent qouta. He’s some sort of executive for a game company, and he’s a jerk so he works for INSERT COMPANY YOU HATE HERE.

Kevin randomly takes his assignment just to call himself a genius and this makes him bump into Mr Wolf. Did I mention everyone is an idiot?

I think I broke my tibia”

You’re tibia’s in your leg”

Okay, that was funny, if only for Bostwick’s delivery. Also, Kevin is still really likable. By the way, Kevin’s last name is Sheppard, and I said, this guy is Mr Wolf. Sheppard. Wolf. Yeah, it’s as clever as it was in the original.

Long story short, he gets Wolf to give him a ride and he ends up looking at his game idea. The game is called Big Fat Liar. Oh come on, you couldn’t even call it what you’re naming your remake?!

One small peek at like two pages, and he kicks Kevin out, stealing the game. In the original, he leaves his work in the limo and Wolf actually reads it before deciding to take it and there he has a reason because his career is struggling.

Here, he does it after a small peak and it’s because he’s just an asshole. It’s a small thing but still. And yes, this is the exact same story as the original but made worse by dumb little details that make the whole thing just hard to swallow.

And going by just the trailers, my memory, and the Wiikipedia summary, I can tell they copied almost every plot point. I mean, I haven’t seen someone lazily rehash Dan Schneider’s materiel for the sake of adding games to it since, of course, Henry Danger.

…Wait..

Anyway, Kevin tells the teacher what happened she doesn’t believe him. Can’t blame her, really. She says “Enjoy Summer school” and we cut to it and it’s shot in a weird way to of course make it look as boring as possible, but I thought this was a dream sequence at first because of how not realistic this looked.

Nope, it’s real. Just simply bad editing.

It’s just a bunch of kids at these ancient computers that Kevin is able to hack in order to contact his friend. Why not. I suppose it’s been a little while since the previous scene as Wolf has put out a teaser for a game called Big Fat Liar.

It’s only a teaser so maybe he hasn’t made the game but still, I have no idea how far ahead we’ve jumped. Doesn’t matter but I’m a nitpicker sometimes. Kevin tells Dad about this but of course, does not believe him.

So naturally, he leaves for business for a few days leaving his lying son at home where he surely won’t do anything wrong. If I had more on my desk, I’d be banging my head on it. Actually I still wouldn’t, that would hurt.

He gives Kevin a credit card saying it’s for emergencies only. HOW ARE YOU SO STUPID?! Oh and he clunkily reveals the Mom is dead. It adds a lot.

With that, Kevin and female friend are off to confront Larry Wolf about his stolen game. As I said, exact same plot only worse.

But as usual I must poke holes in logic; How the ever loving fuck is Kevin just skipping Summer School without anyone noticing? His Dad is gone, so he wouldn’t know either way but they don’t cover up that part.

Kevin just travels hundred of miles off his Dad’s credit card and no one notices?! He has the friend tell her parents she’s going to Yoga Camp and somehow they don’t follow her closely enough to know she’s sneaking off some place else.

Every single part of the set up is contrived as all hell. Wow.

They arrive at Wolf’s company and there is one kind of funny part with the guy at the desk who won’t take any of their crap. It’s amusing how the kids thought just asking for a meeting would work.

Kevin disguises as a pizza guy which works somehow. We see looking at the game which for some reason is called Bigger Fatter Liar. Too late to change your mind, movie. The game keeps crashing because that’s what happens when you create an idea a kid made.

We get more insight into Wolf’s “character” as he goes on about how we went up the ladder in business and hates video games and yada yada. To be fair, Barry Bostwick one of the few actors that seems to be trying, at least.

Kevin has to deal with the secretary but through convulsed means he has the female friend use that voice changer thing to pretend some guy she dated that they find out about through social media stalking.

You know the drill, this makes no sense (the way they did this kind of thing in Captain Underpants made more sense), it can’t happen, and these kids are unlikable. Also, her name is Penny Wise. Huh.

They get to Wolf and ask him to tell Dad the truth. Yeah, they don’t want money or credit, just that. From their perspective, I get it.

I came up with Big Fat Liar and I am never going to admit otherwise”

You know, a movie about someone ripping off an idea that happens to be a ripoff of another film while calling itself a sequel is the ultimate irony.

The two are of course thrown out but through this film’s trademark “This shouldn’t be possible” powers, Kevin taps into Wolf’s phone and gets access to everything.

What moron keeps his credit card numbers in his phone?”

What do I keep saying about pointing out your problems?! By the way, the “Hero” is officially less likable than the villain, good job.

They pretend to be Wolf’s kids so they actually use the credit card and people buy it because….well you know by now. We then get a montage set to a forgettable piece, of them just doing stuff.

It goes without saying that the original did this exact same thing. Sigh.

Becca (she is finally named…through Netflix captions) rightfully feels bad but Kevin says it’s fine because Larry happens to be a jerk. Yeah, it’s still bad. After a very quick bonding scene we move on with the stupid.

The kids get a limo and the driver happens to have worked with Larry and he was screwed over by him. That means he wants in on their plan to screw him over big time. I’m starting to realize this movie pretty much has the same two problems: Odd morality, and contrivances. And also things that make no sense but two sounded better.

Those things get…better in the mid section but even worse in the climax, oh boy.

Perfect time to drop by his house for a visit”

And then we kill him”

Lovely.

They go to his house for their next step.

We should tourch it”

Okay, that’s your cue to ditch the crazy limo driver. Then we get…this part.

He’s downloaded every episode of My Little Pony”

Even the Christmas special?’ ….What, it’s a really good show”

…Normally I’d cringe at the pathetic MLP reference but…why did he ask if even had the “Christmas special” if A. it’s just a normal episode for FIM and B. There’s 3 of them! Which one do you mean?!

It’s a small thing but it’s kind of clear they actually didn’t know anything about the show, just saying.

Long story short, they find a way to make his face white. Hey, that’s nothing like how they made him blue in the original. I mean, here it’s only his face with his hair now being red, which makes less effective and thus less funny, but still, totally original~

By the way, before we deeper, I should mentioned that Wolf NEVER calls the cops or anything like that. He has evidence the kid did something to him (Kevin write “Big Fat Liar” on his mirror for some reason) but Kevin has no evidence of what Wolf did. Wolf has enough power to just get rid of the kid, no questions asked.

But he doesn’t do it because movie.

Remember that joke in the original where they make the radio play the maddeningly catchy song? They do a joke that’s nothing like it. This time it’s a generic metal tune! So original. On the road, someone gets pissed at Wolf for…playing music loudly and intentionally backs his car into Wolf’s.

Why is the villain the more likable of these two people?

I’d say call a cop but a cop sees Larry and assumes he’s a criminal…for some reason. It turns out the kids planted blueprints for a bank and a fake gun in his car which does not help Larry’s case.

To recap, the villain stole an idea and claimed it as his own. The heroes planted a fake gun and made him look like a criminal. Which of these two seems the most unlikable to you? I mean seriously, the latter is pretty much a felony.

I’m not going to act like Wolf doesn’t deserve some punishment but maybe do it in a way that makes your main characters MORE likable than him, not less?

Kevin and Rebecca watch this and they have a whole 5 seconds of discussing lying and how it’s kind of bad. So deep. That’s as deep as Kevin’s development goes, by the way.

Sure, he’s got this forced backstory about a Dead Mom but it feels just that: Forced. They should have foreshadowed this early on, or went deeper into it. Giving him a reason for doing this is fine, but it’s poorly handled and does not really make him more likable.

Nice try, but no dice.

Back with Wiolf, we get another forced and pointless scene with him at a bar that acts hostile to him because of his make up. Larry jumps into speech about how “this is America” and what the hell is even going on?

It’s another part of his torture, making him think this bar is where his meeting is but my god, is it beyond stupid. It only serves to have him finally find out the kids did this and it’s convenient crowd happens to hate Larry or there’d be enough witness to truthfully say the kids deserve to be locked up.

Also, this scene is never mentioned again, big lipped alligator moment, yada yada.

Wolf finally gets to his meeting with Mr. Highcroft.

I’m here to see Big Fat Liar”

Same here but I ain’t getting it. The game however still won’t work even after professions had a crack at it and never told Larry. I will say that something called Bigger Fatter Liar automatically crashing as soon at it starts up is quite fitting.

So now Mr Highcroft is pissed and Wolf needs to fix that game. The next torture scene has them putting Ghost Peppers in his drink which he takes a sip of during a TV Interview. I’d complain about the cruelty but it’s just boring at this point.

Unless Barry Bostwick making weird noises until he screams for water is hilarious to you. It…almost is, but the execution just makes it…stupid.

Serves you right, Wolf”

Kevin is just getting scary at this point.

Not only is Larry in great discomfort, but everyone thinks he’s crazy, the game isn’t fixed and his credit card has been declined. I want to feel bad for him just to spite the movie but he’s an actual asshole so I have no one to root for.

The only thing he cares about is the game so he asks Kevin to help. I’m gonna just skip the crap and sum this up: The kids trust him for some odd reason on the off change he might keep his bargain.

But shock of all shockers, he doesn’t and now he has a finished game, all because Kevin trusted an asshole And that entire montage was entirely pointless. Seriously, him helping Wolf was the game was just pure padding.

We didn’t need more evidence that Larry is an asshole that Kevin hates, just saying.

All you really are is a Big Fat Liar”

So are you so maybe he’s a…Bigger Fatter Liar?

I’m not sorry.

Kevin thinks it’s time to just give up.

He won”

But the only he did was by lying”

No, he won because you were dumb enough to trust him.

I don’t want to lie anymore”

Hey a vain attempt at development. Too bad your problem is being a cruel asshole, and not just lying.

They are about to leave when that security shows up and wants in on some payback. After a quick line, Kevin changes his mind and wants to finally get Larry to tell the truth. Honestly, I’m on the side of saying just cut your loses and go home before you get into even bigger trouble.

They somehow get Wolf into a limo driven by that crazy driver who was willingly to kill him earlier. He drives Wolf around recklessly and doing things that could very well cause tons of damage in some way. Which is even more illegal than what Wolf ever did.

He stops in the middle of train tracks, or at least a place where is train is coming just as it about to come and he gets out leaving Larry there. Just as I whine about this, it turns out this is all one big convoluted set they made using some tech, that made it look like all this was happening when it was not.

What should I be mad at first, the fact they had the time to set this up at all, or the fact that made him think he was going to DIE? The latter. Like what the actual fuck.

I couldn’t believe this was happening when I first saw it but just…wow. Kevin has done some bad things in this movie but just…yikes, this is pretty despicable. If it was funnier maybe this would be fine but nope.

The icing on the cake? He made Wolf he was dying when he was not. Hmm, what’s the word for doing the opposite of the truth? Can’t put my finger on it…

Anyway, instead of just ending there, since most people would shut this thing off, we get a chase scent that is nowhere near as cool as the one in the original. They end up at Wolf’s presentation thing and as soon as he sees this, he acts like it’s all normal and he didn’t just tackle a kid on stage.

But of course, instead of the game, it shows footage of him being a weird asshole. Not even going to ask how they got it because I don’t even care anymore. After the train scene this feels kind of anti climatic.

With that, Larry Wolf is fired and thrown out. Yay no one cares. And also everyone knows Big Fat Liar was Shawn Lev-i mean Kevin’s idea, and he presents it. You know, this meant to be a phone game so why the fuss over it?

The again Angry Birds got a movie so whatever.

Then in another forced turn, Dad shows up because Becca called off screen. This is so we can have our moment with him now instead of waiting. Kevin apologizes, Daddy says he’s proud, yada yada yada.

It’s a reaaaly short bit though, as they are cut off by Kevin addressing his clapping fans, then it just cuts to the next scene. Can’t have anything too meaningful in this shit.

Back at home Dad only just now finds out the credit card money he blew, but Kevin just gives him his royalty check. Hooray for no consequences!

And the final proper scene is of Wolf at his new job, just like the original. But he’s a mime this time so it’s totally not a rip off!

You suck”

My thoughts exactly. Roll credits, screw the bloopers. (Oh and another bad rushed ending that makes the problems worse I DON’T CARE)

Final Thoughts:

Yeah, this was bad. But I’m actually conflicted on exactly HOW bad it is. Yes, I bitch and moaned the whole time but that’s the thing. On a critical level, this pretty much is all bad. But as a viewing experience, it was just simply bad.

Not horrible, just boring and stupid. But when having to recap it, man did I get sick of this one. It’s all the same crap over and over again. Trust me, anyone would get sick of all the cruelty lack of any sense of reality, and lack of comedy.

That’s the thing if this had even decent Comedy, maybe I could forgive it. If it had a sense of style or fun to it, perhaps I could get into the wacky stuff happening all over this film. But instead, it’s very dry with all the jokes being lame or so lame there may as well not even be jokes.

The actors try but don’t really go beyond “You Tried”. Barry Bostwick has amusing delivery I suppose. Ricky Garcia just helps make Kevin even more unlikable, although this is a directing/writing problem.

I understand this movie isn’t striving to be totally realistic or morally right and that’s fine. However, if I can’t get into it for whatever reason, all of this is going to bother me more. Since the comedy fails and the characters are just there, I can’t help but think how awful everything is.

Besides, if your movie has a villain, make sure he’s not morally better than the hero. Sometimes people need to go down a pet, especially if he’s as bad as Wolf is in both versions, but in this one Kevin comes across as worse as he does various bad things with no charm to any of it. Heck, he more or less gets no consequences for using his Dad’s credit card to up and leave and get revenge.

The character himself just as no charm and his development is so forced it comes across as just…hollow. The no lying moral is also just kind of there. There’s a bunch of stuff and also lying is bad.

The story itself is of course a complete copy of the original and every change is either pointless or makes it worse. There was no reason to remake the movie but if you had, put more effort into than this. There are points where they recycle the exact same joke or scene!

Even on it’s own the film just fails. The story is just bland with a lot of cliches and the the main draw is done in an unpleasant way. Honestly, the problems I mentioned are why the movie is bad.

Yeah, the other things aren’t good but if there was charm/wit and a likable lead, maybe it could be a guilty pleasure. But thanks to the lack of charm, it becomes a mess. Nothing makes any sense and I can forgive some minor things like kids being able to set up a lot of this because hey, suspense of disbelief.

But the plot itself only moves forward because all the characters are morons, which is just bad writing. It leads to extremely stupid scenes like the car scene and the bar scene right after that.

Overall, as remake it fails because it just repeats the original with none of the charm, and on it’s own it’s a mess with lame humor, no logic to speak of, and a lead too unlikable to care about.

It’s just a bad movie, not worth your time. If you haven’t seen the original, just watch that. It ain’t great but it’s way better than this. That’s all I have to say about that.

Grade: D

Next time, we’ve got a ripe one. All I will say is….it;s bad.

See ya.

Posted in Play by Play Reviews, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

General Review: Wonder Woman

Hello, Spongey here.

DC, we meet again. We’ve talked about DC’s films before, infact I’ve reviewed them all at this point. So far I think they are all okay, with some good to even great things, but also a lot of flaws that prevent them from being anything above okay.

In the least, they have all been interesting with a lot to discuss. And honestly, I’d take that over something that is just wall to wall bordeom with nothing to talk about. And boy is there a lot to talk about, mostly thanks to the fanboys.

Fanboys in general are annoying but DC has some of the worst. I know people who enjoy these movies that are decent people which makes these guys even worse. Remember when some people asked for Rotten Tomatoes to be shut down?

That was dumb. I will admit some people can be too harsh on DC’s films, as I don’t think anyone are even close to as bad as people say. I agree with Good Bad Flicks when said he’s baffled that people call Suicide Squad one of the worst of 2016 when Meet the Blacks exist.

But that’s no excuse to be rude about the fact they didn’t like it and maybe you did. So yeah, DC is not in a good position. On a side note, yeah Zack Synder having to step down due to his daughter’s death does suck, but it really shows how good of a person he is. Just shows the people behind hated movies are human.

Anyway, people did have up for this one though. It wasn’t as connected to the other DCEU films, meaning it may not suffer from the same problems. That and people have been wantin a true movie for the most iconic female superhero for ages.

Like mos, she’s been on TV like the time she wanted PANTS TO BE DARKNED. But no film until now. Most people thought was decent in BvS for what little screen time she got. Plus, her little theme thing was awesome.

Now it’s upon us and the reviews are….good. Yeah, as you know by now, DC/Warner Bros finally made a film people like. Not everyone loves it but most people do enjoy it. It has a 90 something on RT which is impressive. That’s higher than the most recent Marvel movie! And today I shall see how I feel, given I don’t hate DC to begin with.

The director is the first female to direct a female lead Supehero movie. Why it took long to figure out maybe hiring a female to do one is a good idea, is beyond me. Isn’t that right Catwoman.

She’s mostly done smaller films before, which is cool. They seem to be picking up smaller directors to do big movies lately, like the upcoming Thor 3 is doing. Interesting. The writer has mostly done TV and Comics that I am not familiar enough with to judge him on.

With all that said, will this be the good film DC needs, or that guy running around in his underwear gonna be more dignified? Let’s find out.

This, is Wonder Woman

An Amazon princess finds her idyllic life on an island occupied only by female warriors interrupted when a pilotcrash-lands nearby. After rescuing him, she learns that World War I is engulfing the planet, and vows to use her superpowers to restore peace.

I don’t have as much to say as you might think, so this review will focus a bit more on the bigger picture than the little details, for the most part. The first to get out of the way is this: yes, what you heard is true.

After 4 tries, DC finally made a movie in this universe I can full on call…Good. This is a good movie. It’s not great to be honest, but it is good and it is easy for me to call it good, vs the other movies.

But why does it work? Well, I won’t compare it too much to the others as I do want to be faiir, especially since the others weren’t even that bad. This just happens to be good while they were not.

We’ll start with certain details that are either smaller or less important. Let’s begin with the problems. I actually don’t have a whole lot of them, as most of them are either nitpicky or don’t get in the way of my enjoyment.

As usual with these kinds of movies, some parts don’t make too much sense or drag on too long due to it being 2 hours. Some parts can drag, even if the pacing is mostly good. As some have said, the plot does remind me of stuff like Captain America 1 and it does play is somewhat safe in terms of the story itself.

And yeah, the villains are..eh. Not bad, or even embarrassingly silly but they are just there. Could have been good but ah well, they aren’t too bad. Yeah, these problems are small but certain parts as well as personal preference prevent this from exactly being an amazing movie.

But back to positive/neutral things. The score manages to be decent at least in the moment. It can elevate certain scenes and her awesome theme is still there and used well when it shows up.

The cast is small but used well. The smaller characters like Etta Candy are enjoyable for what they get to do. Chris Pine makes for a solid love interests where they do show them growing to like each other more with some nice slower scenes.

Through him, they show how she reacts the world in some smart ways which we’ll get into. As for Gal Gadot as Diana/Wonder Woman, she’s good. She’s not exactly super expressive but she sells all sides of her and does a great job of looking heroic and badass when she needs to.

This brings to the real meat of the film, the stuff that makes it stand out and be solid. One thing to mention is how they handle the story. Despite the length, it’s not nearly as bogged down with subplots and details as the other DC Movies.

Yes, it has certain things like establishing the world and certain backstories for characters like the villains but it mostly keeps the focus where it should and most of the extra elements tie into the bigger picture.

The stuff that makes the film two hours belongs here or could easily be trimmed out without needing to make tons of other changes. It wasn’t overly simple but not overly complicated either, at ist not as much as some other movies.

They do a good job at setting up the world a, the characters and why they do what they do which gives the action scenes the impact they need. The action scenes are really well done using slow mo effectively. Wonder Woman gets to kick butt in enjoyable ways that make her worth rooting for.

I’m going to act like this is all excellently but it does it better than expected . But the most important thing to me would be and the tone and how Diana herself works. No, I won’t go on about how “dark” the other DC films are but by thing is that the writing on them wasn’t good enough to really make the darker tone of the films work as well as they could have.

I mean, there’s a reason Chris Nolan’s Batman films worked for people and these didn’t. He did things a certain way that made the tone work really well, while the DCEU didn’t get it. This film does.

It doesn’t try to become a comedy or even too much like a Marvel movie. It just takes cues from them in order to do it’s own thing. The film focuses a lot on Diana’s reactions to the modern world of World War 1, in both the typical comedic ways and in terms of how her views differ from ours.

She thinks just killing the big head bad guy will end all war forever, and she’s very hopeful and stands up for everyone. However, she learns it’s not that simple. Sure, we should kill Hitler and such but that won’t stop Nazi’s from existing to be bad.

As recent times has somehow proven.

The film is grounded as it shows how war really is but puts an optimistic spin on it so it’s not depressing. She sees how things really are but stays true to herself as a symbol of hope. The ending shows this very well, and is how you do a slightly rushed ending.

That’s the big thing I like about this movie. It’s not hopeful and optimistic for the sake of it, they show how things are in real life but chooses to stay optimistic about it. You can argue the ending is a bit too clear cut of a happy ending but it was earned, I think.

It’s quite admirable with how the themes are executed. This IS still a DC movie, it just happens to be a bit happier in terms of how it does things. It would be easy to just copy Marvel in order to do well, but after Suicide Squad, they know it’s better to simply to take some cues and go their own direction.

And that is why Wonder Woman works. It is a Superhero Movie with good action scenes but it does realistically show how War is, while still remaining hopeful with a true hero at it’s center. It’s well rounded and I enjoyed watching most of it, which is a contrast to the mixed-ness of the rest of the DCEU.

But even on it’s own, it’s a refreshing addition to the list of Summer Superhero Blockbusters we see every year. Oh, and finally a good Female Superhero movie that works in terms of giving us a strong heroine but isn’t preachy about that fact. No one cares that Diana is a woman and it doesn’t become that kind of movie.

Mostly because it’s more focused on that other big element. I’m glad because we can have a good strong female character without needing to announce that we’re doing that. The film is still an important one on that front, the film itself just doesn’t try to hard t give us a “Strong Independent Woman”, you know?

Overall, not only DCEU finally make a movie I can call good, it’s good on it’s own merits. It has the typical pacing and villains issues you may expect but it makes up for it with it’s strong action scenes, backed up by decent pacing,a strong heroine and solid themes that make it up a grounded, but optimistic as far as Superhero movies go.

I’d recommend this one to those wanting a brighter DCEU film, as well as a good in general. And if you like the DCEU at all, be it just one of the films or all, you will certainly like this film. Some may take more issue with the smaller things and some may be so damn stubborn they can’t accept any DCEU films but ah well.

Wonder Woman is a good movie that I mostly enjoyed and appreciated, and no one is happier to say that than I am. So both Superhero movies coming ut today are worth seeing, just for different reasons. Enjoy them.

Grade: B

Summer is off to a good start, I think. I quite enjoyed both films got to review this week,which is good. Next time we’ll tackle Cars 3 which should be interesting.

See ya.

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General Review: Captain Underpants

Hello, Spongey here.

After about exactly month’s worth of waiting, it’s time for general review antics. To make up for list, we’ll be doing TWO this week. Yeah, just like Trolls/Doctor Strange, I decided to see and review both the Dreamworks film and the comic book movie.

Weird how that combo happened again.

And of course, we’ll talk about the most anticipated superhero film of the whole summer…
Captain Underpants!

Oh and I’ll see Wonder Woman next. Yeah, his time we have Dreamworks 2nd outing for the year, coming a bit earlier than usual. Usually they will have a serious film to balance out the silly one but not this time.

Unless this ends up being a tear jerking drama, which is of course very likely.

Dreamworks is in a weird place so I can worry about the future some other time. Before I tell you that story, I have to tell you THIS story.

I was actually excited for this one, even back when it was announced. See, this is of course based on the book series by Dav Pilkey.

I was into it as kid, and haven’t gotten a chance to discuss even though I have wanted to maybe do a thing on it, and now I can do so, sort of. It certainly a children’s book series, with the kind of humor you expect from the title.

However, there is a bit more to it than you may think. It ain’t deep or anything but the thing is the book’s are very self aware. It knows exactly what is is and just has fun with it. There’s context fourth wall jokes and silly humor that doesn’t just rely on gross out.

Really, the only time it got too gross, the narrator was called out for it. Yeah, it’s that kind of series. It knew it was dumb and just rolled with it. But in later books it got oddly story focused, with each book having a cliffhanger and the story getting really weird and convoluted.

But in a fun way. The humor was kept in tact, it just had more going on. I’m a bit less nostalgic about those as I grew up during that 3 year gap between books, then that SIX year gap between the next book.

But I got ahold of them eventually, minus the most recent/last one where we find out Harold is gay.

Yes, that happened. Leave it to Captain Underpants to handle this better than most adult stories.

So yeah, this series is pretty interesting and a hit, so finally we have this animated film version. Our director previously did some shorts, and Turbo. Eh. The writer has stuff like Neighbors, Storks, and both modern Muppets movies.

Okay, now we’re talking. We’ll ignore his credit on Zoolander 2. There’s no way I could be further sold on this movie.

…Weird Al did the theme song? SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY! …Er, with that said, will this be as fun as the Captain himself, or as pleasant as Mr Krupp? Let’s find out.

(Oh and it currently has an 80 something on RT, but that wasn’t revealed til after I did the intro so yeah)

This, is Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie

ANIMATION:

I have to mention that, as Wikipedia put it, Dreamworks produced this outside of the studio’s pipeline at a significantly lower cost, instead having the animation be done by Mikros Image. As a result, it cost less and has a different style.

Thankfully, this was done simply to use the money in the right areas rather than just be lazily like Illumination often does. The animation here is some of the best cartoon-y CGI I’ve seen in awhile, it looks even better than something like Storks.

It’s kind of like The Peanuts Movie, only with a bigger emphasis on the comedy part of it. It sports a very cartoon-y look with the designs and overall character animation. The characters are thankfully easy to look at the animators really have fun with what they can do.

This especially shows with the Captain himself. He does really exaggerated while he’s Captain Underpants, and for Krupp, they really made him look like he just loves how mean he is. It’s a marvel, really.

The backgrounds are kinda there it’s nice contrast to the everything else, and it knows when to calm down, for the most part. There isn’t a whole lot to say. The animation is really cartoon-y in a good way, and it’s really well and nice liking. That’s all I got there.

WRITING:

Two mischievous friends are being split up by their mean principal so George jokingly tries to hypnotize him with a ring. It actually works and they turn him into a superhero they created: Captain Underpants!

However,n”Captain Underpants’ gets out of control and they must wrangle him. To make matters worse, an evil laughter hating professor enters their school with the intent to rid the world of laughter, so now they all must stop him.

As I said before, the books were very self aware. They knew it was silly so they embrace, always breaking the 4th wall and being as silly as possible. This was it’s appeal, along with other things we’ll get into it.

I was a tad worried the “clever” nature of the books may be lost due to the Hollywood system…but I am glad to say that this did not happen. Everything kids and adults enjoyed about the book series is kept intact here.

Things are added to make it more of a movie but these elements are mixed in well and it never distracts from the silly self aware-ness that the books had. The movie is of course a comedy, and how much you like depends on how funny you find it.

Thankfully, I found it funny. They have a lot of fun with the concepts, especially the personalities of the characters. We’ll discuss that further in that section though. There’s plenty of good gags about how different Captain Underpants and Mr Kruppp are , for example.

The toilet humor is also good because it never gets gross and appeals to that child-ish side of you. I mean, an evil toilet robot? T/hat’s amazing! There’s even a funny Uranus joke that’s a plot point!

Yeah.

The self aware humor is also there, thanks to just flat out having George and Harold talk to the audience. And as I said in animation, they use different styles to create humor. A use of puppets got the biggest laugh out of me and the entire thing.

But don’t worry, there is a story and it’s as silly as it needs be. It is grounded in some areas while keeping the silly-ness, like when they have CU dress as Krupp, as a cover. There are some elements put in or expanded on to create more of a real movie.

Mostly, the themes. The books were pretty Pro Fun and always make cracks at people who try to stifle creativity. Dav had a bone to pick, to put it lightly. It never got preachy about it and mostly just used it for humor.

The movie of course makes it more blatantly but in a way that I liked. They show how fun hating Krupp is and how the school really reflects that, as the kids are always bored and not allowed to have fun.

They do their pranks mostly as a protest, and also for fun. It’s built into the story itself so that these themes aren’t too preachy and are well handled. With Poopypants, they also show that you need to be able to poke fun at yourself.

They wisely put in a detail in his backstory to keep this from causing bad implications or the like. This silly film actually carries a simple but good message: Fun is good. Don’t ruin fun. They put in some cliches elements like the friends being split up or how they actually humanize Krupp a bit.

I was worried about those but the first adds stakes and how a nice conclusion. The 2nd is overblown and Krupp is kept over the top angry and just has these moments that make you feel bad for him. Even the small romance is okay.

Bu7t of course, the writing has problems. For one, Captain Underpants isn’t in costume a lot. He’s in it quite a bit of it but mostly disused as Krupp, he’s only Cu in 3 scenes. Those scenes are good and it’s really satisfying when he dons the un dies but some may wish the title character was in it more.

There’s small structure based things, like how Poopypants could have entered the story earlier, and how the all the stuff going on can make it slightly unfocused and the laughs may be fewer.

It’s not a big deal as the story as solid as it needs to be, plus it’s always at least amusing. They did a better job than they needed to, there’s just small fixes they could have made. And while most of the running gags make I in, a few are missing like the Gym Teacher that gets hurt a lot, or how the two were always introduced as “that kid with the X, remember that now” .

Which is odd as they had them literately introduce themselves!

Speaking of the books, it’s faithful in terms fo story. I said they kept the humor intact and story-wise, they combine the Origin of book one, the external conflict of Poppypants, and small references to the toilet one and the one with the “annoyingly long title”. It’s a nice mix even with the new parts I mentioned.

Overall, the writing is decent. It doesn’t reach for new heights and simply revels in it’s silly-ness. As a result, it’s pretty funny and faithful to it’s source materiel whiel adding in the right elements to make a well rounded well.

It’s not amazingly smart, but the script does everything it needs to.

CHARACTERS;

The characters are simple in terms of who they are but the animators and voice actors worked hard to make most of them pretty enjoyable, even if they are simple.

Starting with George and Harold, voiced by Kevin Hart and Thomas Middlenitch, I was worried due them being voiced by obvious adults but while it is a tad odd, they do really well.,They such good chemistry that makes them fun to watch/listen to.

They have solid comedic timing and they do feel like kids, even if they sound way older. I’d say Thomas is a bit better but both are good. In terms of the characters, they can feel same-y as they work better together. They have some differences like how Harold is the artistic one and George is the writer but maybe they could have shown them a bit better.

In the least, they friendship is strong. And let’s say certain scenes support the whole Harold is Gay thing.

Then we have the real star, Captain Underpants/Krupp, voiced by Ed Helms. Helms is the MPV here, being able to be incredibly goofy as the Captain wile also being deliciously mean as Krupp.

Captain Underpants is a dimwitted hero who always tries to do good In his own way and is a lot of fun, especially when pretending to be Krupp. Krupp is really over the top in how mean he is which makes him a lot of fun too.

And as I said, humanizing him a bit does work in the end. I am interested to see how they handle in a sequel, if they do it. (Please do it). These personalizes in the same body create my favorite character.

There’s also the villain Professes Poopypants, voiced by Nick Kroll. He’s of course an over the top unstable villain to the point where he more or less point blank says he’s evil. Kroll has a lot of fun here making him an enjoyable baddie. He even had a good motivation and helps with the moral aspect.

But in terms of Nick Kroll villains, he’s no Douche.

The rest are just there but can be enjoyable like Melvin, voiced by Jordan Peele, the nerdy kid who has no sense of humor and is George and Harold’s biggest enemy. He’s just there to help Poopypants at one point but he’s still fun with his nature.

The rest are the school faculty, who just get minor gags, although Lunch Lady Edith, voiced by Kristen Schall does become a love interest. Shes fine but doesn’t get to do much, meaning Kristen Schaal was wasted.


Nevermind, 0/10 worst movie ever. It’s odd actually, as there’s another character named Edith here that I got her confused for but I got THAT Edith confused with Tara Ribble who was more important in the books. Yeah.

Overall, a small cast but like the rest of the film, the characters are enjoyable and very likable.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, Captain Underpants (The First Epic Movie) is good fun. It brings the book to life with great cartoon-y animation, fun characters wonderfully brought to life by the actors, and a solid sense of fun that celebrates creativity and fun.

They add to the books to make this more of a movie, in a way that still keeps the fun. The script has it’s issues when it comes to structure, and Captain Underpants doesn’t do as much heroing as you may hope (honestly, most of it was in the music video for the theme song), but that can forgiven.

It’s not masterpiece, but it’s not trying to be. It’s meant to be a good silly fun time, and if you have any sense of humor, you will get a kick out of this silly fun movie and all it has to offer. Fans of the books will mostly be pleased too.

It’s a kids movie that kids will love and adults will hopefully enjoy as a kid at hear. Don’t expect the next Zootopia and just have fun, hopefully you shall too. I certainly did.

Writing: B

Animation: B+

Characters: B

OVERALL: B

Finally, another good funny animated comedy. But our next animated film is supposedly a tad more serious, despite being about talking cars. But our next general review will be the one I promised as we discuss another DCEU film.

Here we go again….

See ya.

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Goosebumps Hall of Horrors-The Five Masks of Dr. Screem

Hello, Spongey here.

Hall of Horrors time again! This time we go another interesting-ish one. It’s interesting because it’s like Weirdo Halloween. Yes, another extra long special edition that is a Halloween book. Meaning it’s Halloween in May!

Actually, it’s Halloween in July as that is when this book came out. What.

This time, it’s shorter at about 170 pages which is a bit more manageable than 200 plus. I don’t recall if it pads itself with a 2nd story or if it earns that length with the main story. So it’ll be fun to revisit, as these always are.

So far we’ve a good one and an eh one, and hopefully this is a good one. I remember liking it but let’s see if it’s good when I critique it more carefully. Time to have some extra long fun in the Hall of Horrors.

This, is The Five Masks of Dr Screem

The book opens with our main character, Monica, and her annoying little brother. As in, he’s annoying to me as well as Monica. In that typical Goosebumps way of course. She has to take him Trick or Treating but of course she really doesn’t want to.

Interesting that we’re starting on Halloween night, most GB books like this build up to it. Given the length of the book, I can smell the mid section padding from here!

Also, there’s a few part where Mom does nothing about Peter being annoying and apparently she just says he’s “High Energy”. Fantastic parenting.

They meet up with Monica’s friends and soon get very annoyed by Peter being a little shit. He gets so bad that the friends ditch her and frankly I don’t blame him with how he’s acting. Come on, didn’t the last book also have people I hated off the bat?

Monica complains a bit but they just move on and later, they’ve gotten their fair share of candy but Peter whines when we gets an apple. Stine, you’re trying too hard to make him annoying, calm it down.

They end up on a block they’ve never been to before and Peter wants to explore this unfamiliar place with Monica actually wanting to be smart and leave. But of course he has none of that and approaches a creepy looking house.

I’m just going to assume everything bad that happens soon is his fault.

For now, nothing is too wrong as the woman that shows up seems nice enough, until she says their names before they reveal them. She pulls out a book that says Monica and Peter will help Bella.

Yeah, nothing off about her at all.

It is written in this book, so it must be true”

But of course.

She says they have to get back these 5 masks.

They are called the Masks of Screem”

So close to a roll credits moment. She actually has the masks at the moment and she explains things. But first, this:

There is magic involved. I am 130 years old”

And I’m SpongeBob SquarePants”

We took a break from the random SpongeBob name drops but there you go. Nothing can top the reference in Weirdo Halloween.

A bunch of years ago, a Sorcerer that was born on Halloween made these masks (because….he was bored) and gave them to “Dr Screem” because….he felt like it. It has evil magic that comes to life once a year for reasons and Bella I guess took the masks from him because it’s too evil.

This is a really well written and explained backstory.

He didn’t know of Screem’s Evil”

I get it, Dr Screem just sounds like a nice fellow.

Every year, Monica and Dr Screem battle over the masks, as he takes them and Bella needs someone to hunt them down every year. The sorrcer put a curse on Bella for reasons to make all of this happen.

So he had no idea Screem was evil yet he himself puts curses on people?

She can’t touch the masks or she’ll die, which explains why she doesn’t just destroy them. But why can’t your helpers destroy them? Just saying. A bit later, Dr Screem finally shows up and spoilers, he’s evil just his name suggests.

He takes the masks and leaves, while doing creepy stuff. Naturally, the kids run for their lives as even after all that talk, they still don’t care about Bella and her plight. They pay the price by having their house suddenly be gone when they get back home.

Was Bella telling the truth?”

No, a guy just took 5 masks after Bella went on about them for no fucking reason. Come on!

They go their neighbors house to ask what happened, but they only find two strangers who claim there has never been a house there dun dun dun. For some reason, this book is spit into two parts and part 2 starts here, even though it’s all one story.

Shockingly, it’s Peter who decides it’s a sign they should help Bella. Good on him at least. They go back to her and says Screem did the whole house thing because he can change reality. That’s quite a big power for someone who dedicates their life to stealing masks.

In order to fix that, they gotta get all the masks from Screem. Gotta catch them all, and all that. Yes, this book is now a fetch quest, woo hoo. They are given a list of the masks and they head off, with no hints because they are easier find than to keep or some shit like that.

Right away, they find a mask in a hedge. Wow, Screem already sucks at this. Unless he gave them an easy one for false hope Nah, that’s too smart for Goosebumps. The kids mention this as a possibility…so maybe it’s not too smart but whatever.

The mask is filled with bugs but they get over it and after Monica puts it on, they find themselves teleported to some place with Giant praying mantis’ ala Shock Street.

We get an actually intense scene with them trying t escape them and their caccons, especially compared to the Shock Street one, in both the book and big movie. Can’t describe it but it’s pretty cool.

They escape but still have 4 masks to go and we’re 80 pages, meaning the rest will be rushed. They figure the Mummy mask will be at the museum so they head there. This place is on “Museum Drive”

That’s like if there a street called “Hospital Lane” or something. Huh.

Thankfully, it is open for a party so no need to sneak in. They find the Mummy section and take a peek to find the mask. The find the mask after fumbling a bit. How exciting, so much better than the intense scene was just had.

Suddenly, the mask teleports them to what looks like Egypt, fittingly enough. Side note, gotta love how obvious Screem is with his hiding places. So what’s happening?

We were about to be mummified…mummified alive!”

Oh.

While this part is decent, with them escaping, it is somewhat breif and as a result, pointless. But my logic so was the mantis so whatever. By magic, they end up back home too. The next mask is of a Hymalan Snow Wolf because going from hot to cold is ironic.

They look for the mask at a hill in town called Wolf Hill, because why not. Sure enough they find it…being worn by an angry dog. She gets away and puts on the mask and once again teleports…only this time she’s been turned into a wolf.

Well, okay then.

Peter is a wolf (how ironic) and their new instincts make them fight over food. Not that Peter was much better as a human. But once again, it’s only a short scene before an avalanche or something takes them back home and makes them human again. I get why these scenes are like this, but it just makes them feel like filler.

The next mask a Skull so it’s on to a Graveyard on Halloween. I’m sure nothing will happen. They get there and find the mask but incur the wrath of a skelton and after a bit with him, Screem finally shows up again to try and stop the kids.

He asks them for his masks back and claim’s Bella is the evil one. I would be shocked but earlier, Bella said he is a big liar so he is lying. They foreshadowing it but come on, that’s on the nose.

Unless Bella is the liar….well darn.

And thankfully, the kids remember she said that and don’t believe him. At least these kids are smart, kinda. Screem drags Peter into this tunnel thing but Peter escapes and even grabs the remaining masks from him so we don’t have to repeat a sequence formula again.

They go back to Bella, who asks them to hand her the masks. Wait, hand her? She said she couldn’t touch them. Well, shit I think my theory was right. Speaking of twists, turns out the Peter that escape was actually Dr Screem.

They traded places back there after Peter bought into his statements and now I guess he was right. A decent mislead although kind of obvious in it’s own right. He and Monica starting fighting over the masks, but then the sun comes up and in a bright flash of light, they vanish.

That’s…very anti climatic. What’s the real story of the masks then? Peter pops up, having gotten here incredibly quickly. Also, since they just kind of vanish while fighting each other, the identity of the evil one was kind of irreverent.

They go back to where home is but it’s still gone. But they come up with a way to fix it. They find that book that creepily said their situation and had no reason to exist, and cross out what it says right now and make it say that it was Halloween night again and everything was normal.

This book was set up but it STILL feels like a Deus Ex Machina.

It works but you see, they also said they would forget what happened, so they do. So thus, they hit the reset button and the entire book was pointless. Yay. But we need a twists so the masks appear in the bags and they laugh.

The end. Laaaame. As is the Storykeeper’s puns. Why this extra long?

Final Thoughts;

This one was…okay. I somehow remember it being a lot better. There’s nothing too terrible here but nothing too great and the ending makes everything kind of pointless. I will say I did enjoy most of it but not a whole lot.

The concept is a decent one, and some of the scenes themselves can be intense and enjoyable. But the best thing I can say about this one is that it has fun ideas and some cool scenes, there’s nothing that rises above just enjoyable. Yeah, Goosebumps rarely ideas but you’d expect more from a longer book, even Weirdo Halloween did.

There really is no reason for this to be longer. It takes too long to get going, and while it does have all those scenes for the masks, the ending makes it so the extra length was not needed. Speaking of, that’s my biggest problem.

As I said the reveal of the villain doesn’t really have any real effect on the story, and the “climax” is lame. And of course, their memories are erased for no real reason. You can have the lame ending without doing that.

It just makes the whole book pointless. We never get a good enough reason for why all this is happening, and no one even remembers it. Why read a long-ish book if nothing even matters?!

I’m conflicted, as I can say I mostly enjoy it but it has little problems,and an ending that makes all of it pointless. The length makes it worse. I can’t say I like it but I can say I don’t dislike it. It really is the ending, as the rest is perfectly fine.

But not good enough to make up for the ending, to me at least. However, the ending isn’t enough to make this one too bad. See why I’m so conflicted? It’s taken me a bit to write this sum up as there’s not much to say besides what I just said.

So I’ll wrap it up. This book can be fun but with the lame ending a such, it feels a bit shallow and not worth the length it has. I’ll never let that go, don’t put an ending like that if the book is longer than normal.

Overall, kind of a disappointment, oddly enough.

Grade: ….B-? I don’t know, maybe I’ll change my mind but at the moment, it’s closer to here than a lower grade.

Yeah, not my best for a longer book but blame Stine this time.

Next time we finally get another Goosebumps Zombie book. Hope it’s good.

See ya.

Posted in Book Reviews, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Regular Show: The Movie

Regular_Show_the_Movie

You know who else is reviewing Regular Show The Movie?

Hello, Spongey here.

I think it’s time do something good again. I swear I’ll try to mix things up with good movies but as you know, it’s easier to explain why a bad movie is bad than the other way around. Not to mention picking films that aren’t over talked about already.

I typically keep the positive film reviews to the General Reviews or other places like my new movie battles series. Still, I have some positive review ideas and here’s one I wanted to do.

A few days ago at the time of this writing, I put out my Top 5 Regular Season 7/8 Episodes. For those that didn’t read it, it was a follow up to my list of the Top 11 Regular Show Episodes. If you haven’t read either list…well you should to know my feelings on the show , as it’s important for the movie.

But for those who only read the main reviews, I’ll copy paste what I said in the top 11:

Created by JG Quintel, this series centers around the surreal adventures of a Blue Jay and Raccoon named Mordecai and Rigby that work at a park with a gumball machine named Benson for a boss, a ghost, an immortal yeti….and a fat guy.

This show, along with Adventure Time, helped make Cartoon Network great again. This show in particular got quite the adult audience because of how….strange it was. Even by Cartoon Network standards.

The main shitck of the show is that it starts out with a fairly normal situation that somehow becomes crazy and supernatural, most of the time with no real explanation. … love this show. While Adventure Time may technically be better, I always enjoyed this show more, because it appeals to my sense of humor more. But much like Ed, Edd, N Eddy, I SHOULD hate this show.

I mean, the two main characters are slackers and are often jerks to each other, and never seem to learn their lesson. Not to mention Benson seems like he could be the Squidward type who can’t stand them and is punished unfairly. How does it still work? Well, it’s mostly because they do a good job at making these two very likable.

They have good chemistry and you really see their bond. They also get a lot of development later on. The writers do a good them at making distinctly different characters despite often doing the same things.

That’s something a lot of the ripoffs can’t get down.

But while I love the humor, surreal visuals and characters, the real reason I love the show is how …emotional it can be…As the show goes on, it becomes more focused on telling good stories that really dive into these characters. They even go story arcs where things change. Not to the extent of some other shows, but they still exist….”

I said more than I remember. But yeah, I like the show, enough to do 2 lists. Thankfully, it was popular enough to warrant a TV Movie in 2015, which my list was a tie in to. I’d talk about movies based on cartoons and how I want more but that will be discussed when I do a full review of the MLP FIM Movie next year, as I want to focus on other stuff in this review.

It is interesting how this got the movie before Adventure Time, I guess they I figured the Mini-Series they do now is close enough. I have kind of spoken about the film before, in a post on Deviant Art along with a VLOG.

But that was after my first viewing and I haven’t re-watched it since. I also couldn’t spoil anything, meaning I couldn’t go into detail on certain aspects. Two years later,it’s time to give it a full review and look at how good it is now. I was really excited to the point where I bought it on iTunes when it was released early on there, than got the DVD as well. I liked it and imagine I still will, but I’ll get to be a tad more objective.

No use going into the creative team, the writers happen to the creator of the show and one of it’s main writers, and said creator has directed it. It’s time to truly close the book on the series and give it my own special fare well, and see how it’s made for TV Film holds up.

With that said, let’s tackle this film and be more positive for today.

This, is Regular Show: The Movie

The movie opens in “The Future” as Rigby is piloting a space ship going after a TimeNado. It did not take long for this to get crazy awesome. He leads a crew consisting of the other park workers, including a Pops that somehow has just now showed signs of aging.

There’s another reason seeing an older Pops is weird but that’s a spoiler for the series. Also High Five Ghost has a Mech Suit because why not.

They storm some base and find a “Temporal Crystal”.

Now to let our guard down for just one second”

I see the movie is at least self aware.

Some of the crew is shot down and Mordecai comes in….as their foe.

Hey traitor, how’s the hand holding up?”

I see not much has changed at all.

This guy shows up as he is the villain behind all this. He reveals to Benson that Mordecai and Rigby created the TimeNado but he doesn’t care as long as Rigby can fix this. He’s a lot more trusting of Rigby in the future.

Benson jumps in to give Rigby time to escape but Mordecai chases him down.

What about your friends?”

We’re not friends. We haven’t been friends for a long time/”

Yeah, I could tell based on your “friendly” meetup back there.

They shoot each but not before Rigby sends his ship back in time. Well, that was a cool way to start us off. In Media Res can be tricky but here it’s an epic and surprising way to make us wonder how the heck we got to this point.

After some neat Video Game Style opening credits, we cut the present as Mordecai and Rigby are getting Coffee. This involves Eileen’s only appearance in the movie, boo.

They notice they are late for work, so they Homage Ferris Bueller to get there. This is a really cool scene, mostly because the cuts to the park give us small bits of the supporting characters.

You know who else has a meeting in 8? My Mom!”

Unfortunately, they get to work late which pisses of so much that he finally fires him. Oh no, now they’ll have get sad for a bit, get new jobs in the same scene many times, than get back in a way that makes everything pointless!

Man, I stretched for that reference.

Thankfully, Rigby gets them out of trouble by saying the Breakfast Burritos they got were for Benson which changes his mind. I kind of wish they actually got fired, to start the plot off but whatever, what we get is good too.

As they work, they discuss their future when Rigby sees a fireball coming towards them, so he runs away,

You can’t run away from your Future”

Haw haw.

The fireball crashes and it turns out to be a space ship. It opens to reveal Future Rigby who is not in the best shape, since he kind of got shot. He point blank tells him who he is and that he needs their help

Mordecai and Rigby tried to make a time machine in High School and it was the genesis of a massive TimeNado. Sharknado 5 plot leaked!

A Timenado is exactly what it says on the tin, and their old teacher Ross is using it to suck up Earth’s timeline. He’s that guy from the opening. They need to go back in time to stop Past Them from trying to make that time machine to begin with.

A typical day for Mordecai and Rigby, really. Jokes aside, our plot starts really quickly but I think we get just enough set up of who the characters are before we truly get into it. Plus, there’s down time later as well as development.

Future Rigby also mentions that Future Mordecai shot him and before he can explin further, he dies. But not before giving Rigby some advice.

You have to tell the truth, even if it means losing Mordecai”

Man, this is heavy. And that’s my Back to the Future Reference, can I go home now?

They go to the house where Mordecai explains that Rigby got into College U and Mordecai did not so they wanted to make a time machine to fix that. But it just causes an explosion, they got expelled and yada yada yada.

Okay, I thought we’re caught up, Monologue Johnson”

Benson is in disbelief (even though this isn’t even their first time related adventure) but he gets over it. It leads to a funny MuscleMan moment I won’t spoil though. (Even if I’m gonna spoil the whole plot as usual).

With that, they gear up to go the past. The controls of the ship just so happen to be like a controller, so Rigby gets to drive.

He doesn’t even have a license”

You don’t need a license to drive a spaceship. They fly off and we cut to “The Past” at West Anderson High School, nice. We see Past Mordecai and Rigby (Oh, this is going to get confusing) meet up and say they applied for College U, which allows pretty much everyone.

And since this is High School in a movie, Rigby is bullied by some Jerk Jocks. Rigby ruined their Volleyball Championships so at least they have some kind of motivation. Rigby is called to Mr Ross, and the Present Crew lands in The Past.

After a gag with Past Benson having a mullet, Ross tells Past Rigby that he’s failing science, but he will let Rigby do a last minute project to pass. Rigby asks for an example of one he could take ideas from, and Ross shows him a time machine he is working on.

You kind of jumped the gun a bit. I know you want Rigby off your back but perhaps showing students you dislike a super secret project isn’t a good idea. Spoilers, it isn’t. He even tells them what he plans to do with it; Go back and win the Volleyball Champship and –

Get Revenge!”

He would be such an obvious villin if we didn’t already know that from the opening. They shrug that off because all normal people make time machines to get “revenge”, right? This is before crazy stuff every day for them.

You’d probably change your mind if you knew who I was getting revenge on”

Okay, you’re terrible at this. To be fair, all that is part of the joke, and yeah, it’s kind of funny.

The Present Gang sneak in but Benson and Pops take some jock’s jackets to do so and they aren’t happy when they find them. They do see Present Mordecai and Rigby and don’t question why they look older. I guess everyone is stupid in the Past.

Like the great people they are, Present Mordecai and Rigby leave Benson and Pops and they get beat up. At least stuff this is kinda almost in character, at least in context,

Meanwhile, Skips is fixing the space ship and while he’s gathering supplies, Muscle Man looks for a bathroom. They are scared by the future space toilet (That was a strange sentence) and leave to use the bushes.

However, Past Muscle Man and Hi Five Ghost find the ship which they immediately want to use for a crash pit. We’ll get back to them later but honestly, the whole scene with them is completely pointless. It’s entertaining sure but it adds nothing to the story.

Not a big deal but a notable criticism I have nonetheless. I don’t have too many real complaints in general though, so sure it’s doing well despite getting into the very quickly.

Present Mordecai and Rigby find their past selves at the local Pizzeria and they discuss the ramifications of them meeting their past selves, leading to a pretty funny exchange.

Future you came and talked to you and nothing happened”

Well, he died”

That was only because I shot you”

Oh yeah!”

I love that they say something like that so casually.

They reveal themselves to their past selves and after some proof, they believe them. Once again, they accept a crazy idea because why not. They help their past selves make a Volcano, which is the right choice as they are really good at poetry.

Helping them gives them access to Ross’ room so they can take care of the time machine. They destroy it. Roll credits! Okay, kidding. For once, I’m happy it’s not the end.

They leave, along with Benson and Pops who are reasonably pissed about earlier but at least it’s funny with how they comment on it.

Muscle Man goes back to the ship only to find that it’s gone. Thankfully, a shirt informs him that his past self took it. He catches up to himself for an exciting enough sequence that has him hitting himself in the man boobs. Yes.

Next time, use the Space Toilet”

They take the ship back a bit before the Present Gang comes back. And that whole scene is never referenced again. Again, it is enjoyable but it adds nothing to the story and could have been removed. The DVD has a few Deleted/Alternate scenes, why did this stay in?

They celebrate a job well done, but Rigby suspiciously has to take care of something. Past Rigby gets a response from College U…. but he didn’t get in. Given this contradicts what Mordecai said earlier (/later, I hate Time Travel) , you know something is up with what he said.

Rigby is of course, in a bit that suitably sad but doesn’t get too mopey. Mostly because he hatches a plan. He looks through Mordecai’s mail and sees that he got accepted. He changes it so that it says he got denied.

Yeah, that’s kind of scummy but that’s kind of the point. We see hints of this with the way Rigby talks about the past at certain points, and that he does kind of regret it. It’s bad sure but for a good reason and it leads to some interesting stuff later on.

Although he shouldn’t have told Mordecai he got in, because his whole reasoning in doing this so they at least both get rejected. But we wouldn’t have a story I guess. Past Mordecai gets the idea to fix Ross’ time machine to fix this, as explained earlier/later.

And given we know this causes the Timenado, I can safely blame all of this on Rigby. But in a good way, because it makes for a good story. Present Rigby wants to tell his past self to tell Mordecai the truth because as I said, he does regret all this.

Future Mr Ross appears in front of Rigby and threatens to reveal is secret to Present Mordecai. By the way, there’s a running gag where he chokes when he laughs evilly, we saw it both Past and Future Versions of him and he lampshades it the 2nd time.

See, That’s how you a gag like that, Fantastic 4orce!

Future Ross plans to plant a time machine in the lab so the whole TimeNado thing can happen. He leaves, because it’s more dramatic if he address Rigby’s whole thing later. Rigby goes back to the others, just as portals start appearing and tells them about the 2nd time machine.

Only Mordecai questions but Rigby deflects it so he can rush them along. At the high school, they bump into Future Mordecai along with Ross. He explains his plan; Get revenge, Destroy Earth, Watch 25 years of TV in space.

I don’t know about you, but that’s my retirement plan right there.

A fight ensues and Past Mordecai and Rigby end up creating the TimeNado, meaning they’ve lost. Because I have to say something, I’ll say I like Ross, his plan isn’t exactly complicated but he has a motivation and is enjoyable.

And here is where my favorite part of the movie comes in, and where the characters arcs come to a head. Ross reveals the truth, that Rigby didn’t get in to College U and he forces Rigby to read his real “Acceptance” letter he happens to carry around for plot convenience.

I was going to type the whole letter but this is one of things I simply cannot do justice. The short version is Rigby was rejected, hard, from a school that accepts everyone and you only have to do minimum work. At one point the letter says “if You can even read this”

Ouch.

The way Rigby reads it, the character’s reactions, the music make this scene so good. It’s pretty much a liar revealed story, but the payoff is done so well I don’t even care. Yes, it’s a dumb cliché but it works for the story and as I said, this scene is just too good. It shouldn’t be as emotional as it is but dang.

Mordecai is naturally pissed but before they can mope, Ross tosses an exploding volleyball at them which hits Future Mordecai instead. And now both of their future selves are dead. This show really earns that TV PG Rating some, I mean all the time.

Remember when you ruined my state championship? Now we’re even”

I love how much he just doesn’t care that he killed his lackey.

Actually, no one cares either but we move on to Present Mordecai being upset. Okay then. He’s incredibly pissed because of what Rigby did and how all of that is the reason they are stuck in this dead end job.

Who better to be stuck with than your best friend?”

You’re not my friend”

Again, ouch. I shouldn’t care as much due to the cliché aspect of the set but the execution really makes me invested. And NOW they care for Future Mordecai, who says he regrets everything he did/will do.

Work isn’t everything, it’s not worth shooting your best friend over”

Fantastic moral of the kids.

Future Mordecai dies, after having regretted turning evil and killing his best friend earlier. Dang, everything just goes wrong here and it’s great. Well, not so great for them, but it’s great for the story and the emotion.

And yes, a sad song plays but man is it earned. The pacing of film does perhaps cause too much to happen at points, but here the emotion makes it really interesting.

Rigby takes the ship and runs away, while the others are mad at him and wondering what they will do now. Though this other ship I think was Future Mordecai’s, they learn the Future TiimeNado is getting worse.

Meanwhile, Rigby stopped at refueling station but got knocked out and wakes up in a room with Father Time, who is mad out of clocks. Because of course he is. They have a nice chat about the situation.

He point blank tells Rigby to just apologize for what he did. A bit easy for sure, we don’t have a ton of time left. The others went to the future to battle Future Ross and Rigby goes there to fix his mess.

We some quick epic battle stuff which is just as enjoyable as you think it would be. Rigby shows up and looks for Mordecai in another intense sequence and finds him face to face with Ross.

I’ll be finished when time is erased and you two are dead!”

I love the way the actor screams the line.

Another fun fight ensues, as Ross refuses to let go of the whole Championship thing,

Do you know how it feels to dedicate your life to something and have it ruined?!”

Oh, I get it now., it’s a parallel. Eh. They throw him off the platform and he pretty much dies. I’d use the PERFECT FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT PICTURE but this movie is too actually good for that.

Rigby apologizes to Mordecai for changing the letter and starting all this. It’s really sincre and as such, very effective. Rigby started all this yet he remains likable because he knows he messed up.

He accepts because while things could have gone differently, he prefers the way things turned out with best bro, which is very nice. Rigby takes this box of…stuff that I guess will fix the TimeNado and goes to toss it even, because he wants to fix his own problems for a change.

Awesome.

Also, Rigby asks for a Statue of him in the park so his heroic sacrifice which is interesting for spoiler reasons.

But of course, Ross wasn’t actually dead because of a confusing time collar thing he has. Why not. So Rigby just breaks it then kills him again for real this time. Well, that was cool but pointless.

They toss the thing in the TimeNado and leave as things sort themselves out. We cut back to the past as things went the way they were supposed to: Past Mordecai and Rigby caused an explosion and Ross got fired. And is going to jail,which he failed to mention before.

But this time, Past Rigby apologies for ruining the State Championship Game.

That’s all I’ve been waiting to hear”

Huh, that was easy. At least they make a gag of it with him wanting to get burgers but having to go to jail instead.

The Present Gang goes back to the Present as time sorts itself out, getting read of the dead bodies of their future selves.

I guess that wraps a neat bow around everything”

Heh.

The next day, Mordecai and Rigby are late again. But that’s an issue because they have a Space Ship now, even though it should have vanished along with-okay, I don’t care.

We’re never gonna be late again”

Actually, you will because this ship is never shown in the series afrer this. But okay, fly off inot the credits.

Yep, that’s the end. One of the more rushed endings to a good movie I’ve seen in a while but ah well. The main focus got a solid closure and the ending bit was amusing. This movie was only an hour and 7 minutes which is an issue but more on that in a sec.

Still, an okay ending in spite of the whole rushed thing.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, this was just as good as when I first saw it. I will say right off the bat it has problems that prevent it from being as good as something like ATD or the like. I’ll start with the problems,which aren’t huge but do exist.

The biggest issue I can point out is the pacing. It’s not too bad but sometimes it goes a bit fast, causing a lot of things to happen at once. There’s a lot details here and there which can bog things down as they have to explain it all. The plot can start too fast and I think more time was needled to flesh things out before we went right into it. The blatant filelr in the middle kind of makes you wonder why it wasn’t cut to give extra time to stuff that deserves it.

As I said, the DVD has Deleted/Alternate Scenes that add some neat stuff I wish had made it in. As a film, it has this issue that prevents it from being truly great. There’s other things I can nitpick, like some characters not getting enough to do and some wonky CGI, but that’s my main point.

But at least most of the characters do something at some point, and the focus is supposed on the two leads who are handled well. There’s also Ross who is a fun villain but these two are more important.

This has everything you need for an hour long Regular Show adventure with some epic battles and good humor. The extra elements keep the story engaging and it expands nicely on certain aspects.

The animation isn’t that much better than the show but it was already really good anyway. Perhaps some beefing up would be nice so that could perhaps work in theaters but there’s nothing wrong with a good TV Movie.

There are plenty of things they could have done but they did well for what they gave us. Mordecai and Rigby’s friendship is put to the test and it’s the highlight of the film. As I said, what Rigby did was bad but you see why he did and he feels bad all the time.

So when it gets sad, it feels earned. I wouldn’t call anything tear jerking but there’s nice emotion which works because the characters are mostly strong. Yes, some of is cliché or odd but the execution makes it engaging.

It’s nice for Rigby to own up to his mistakes and fix his problems for once. Between this and Season 7, the character really grew up. It’s not the deepest thing ever put on film but it is well handled and enjoyable.

Overall, the movie is pretty good. As a Regular Show product is it mildly great with the focus on their friendship but as a film, even a Tv Film, it is mostly just pretty good due to some mild pacing issues.

I can see new comers being turned off by that problem, but if you can look past it, you’re in for a fun ride, even if it’s not exactly the tightest script ever. It at least is never boring and is always fun to watch, with some parts going beyond.

If you’re wondering, I would put it on my list, somewhere in the middle. The minor issues preventing it from being perfect but as an extended episode, it works very well and would go on the list.

So yeah, it’s solid.

Grade: B, with it being B+ as a Regular Show product but I gotta be Critical here.

That was fun. I think this a nice way to honor the show. Thank you Regular Show, for all you’ve done for us and being so good. To quote Pops, Jolly Good Show.

Time to tease the next review. And if I know me, I’ll pick something that looks/is bad for next time. So give it to me.

Bigger_Fatter_Liar.jpg

Yeah, I expected that.

See ya.

Posted in Play by Play Reviews, Uncategorized | Leave a comment