I’m gonna start this off by telling you this is a no BS review. This film’s had its fair share of challenges from the minute production began up until the release of the first trailer. Michael Bay working behind another beloved franchise caused fan outrage everywhere, given his track record for slow motion sequences, excessive amount of explosions and visual effects overkill. It is due to this fan outrage that the intended “Ninja Turtles” title was changed to the full Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles one, after fans everywhere attempted to get the project scrapped becase of certain liberties that were being taken with the heroes’ backstory. *cue Ancient Aliens meme*. There’s an interesting bit in the movie where Fox’s character ridicules this, “Aliens? no, that’s stupid!” Despite all this, Jonathan Liebesman and Michael Bay are still able to bring a nod to previous versions of Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman’s characters.
TMNT is an interesting piece of work. It wasn’t the disaster everyone expected it to be, but its also not the best version of the turtles we’ve seen. Having said that, if you go into theaters for the Turtles, you’re going to enjoy yourself. Sporting a far more menacing, 6 foot, super strong, titan-like look, the brothers still manage to hold onto that teenage playful behavior we’re used to. The film attempts to balance the amount of screen time each turtle gets, but Michelangelo ends up stealing the show with his light hearted personality and repeated attempts at winning April’s affection.
The intro sequence to the film is one of my favorite things about it, with colorful backgrounds and a mix of black and white scenes to mirror the 1984 comic book. Not many liberties were taken with the origin of the turtles aside from the recent hollywood trend of “everyone is connected”, some might be against it whereas I was actually on board with a reason behind the Turtles being so protective of Megan Fox’s April O’neil. Fox’s performance is a decent one, however she doesn’t have much to work with, making her screen time a little short of memorable. This seems to be the case too for Whoopi Goldberg, who plays April’s skeptical boss, as she just pops in and out for no apparent reason.
The film’s plot nothing complex, the Foot clan (who are more of private military, less ninja) is causing havok, the city needs heroes, turtles rise up to the challenge, it works. You go into a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie to have a good time, not a life changing experience, and that’s exactly what this movie does! I wasn’t bored in the very least, the jokes were simple and good enough for everyone to enjoy. Once the heroes are officially introduced in a particular scene involving surveillance monitors, you’ll find yourself breathing a sigh of relief because regardless of how they look these are still YOUR turtles.
Plot holes aside, the movie’s biggest setback for me was character design. Master Splinter’s look is not as pleasant as the brothers’ , but then again how pleasant looking can a rat be? Without nitpicking much or mentioning the cartoon feel of certain fight sequences lets move on to my dislike about this film, The Shredder. The minute we’re introduced to the man behind it all, we get a glimpse of the imposing Oroku Saki(not once do we hear anyone call him by his real name btw), the short sequence involving The Shredder and a member of the foot clan is one that teases the presence of a terrifying villain that just leaves you wanting more as it fails to keep that aura throughout the film. I found myself distracted by the heavy amount of CG and the ridiculous variety of blades he carried with him, it was almost like a shrunken Megatron was trying to take over New York City, I’ll admit that this was my only snobby-fan outrage towards the film.
The movie’s antagonist roles were somewhat ignored, and the bad guys don’t really have that evil of a plan? But then again I wasn’t expecting an intricate plot. Without going much into it the way the villains of the movie go about their “super secret” endeavor somehow ends up being the complete opposite and anyone would be able to see right through it if it were a real life situation.
All in all this movie was a fun ride, there’s turtles, they’re DEFINITELY mutants, there’s some ninja and a lotta force, but they’re still teenagers who eat pizza and drop a familiar line or two. The movie features some fun action sequences and stresses the family element behind these beloved characters. Its not a masterpiece or a fan service, but its a fun summer flick that will get a few laughs out of you and maybe tickle your nostalgia nerve.
Go watch it and let us know what you think in the comments down below or shoot us a tweet over @NerdworkTweets!