Thursday, August 7, 2014

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - 1 1/2 stars

This is the fifth TMNT movie but it’s a reboot of the series, so it has nothing to do with the previous movies.  It’s also a lot more dark and serious than a turtles movie should be.

First of all, the movie takes way too long to introduce us to the turtles.  For the first 20 minutes or so, we’re watching April O’Neal (Megan Fox) working as a news reporter.  She wants to report on the big stories, but she’s stuck doing fluff pieces.  When she witnesses the evil Foot clan trying to rob a shipping dock, she sees a mysterious vigilante thwart the crime.  She tries to tell her news director (Whoopi Goldberg) who doesn’t believe her.

It’s obvious the filmmakers were trying to make this as much like Transformers as they can.  The problem is this is a movie for kids, and I think they would be bored by it.  We should be excited to meet the turtles, and when we finally do, they’re a letdown.  The CGI is good – unlike the 1990 movie, their shells don’t bend when they fight – but the characters are too harsh and sinister.  Michelangelo is the only one who cracks any jokes, and he made me laugh a few times. 

The story is so convoluted.  There’s a rich scientist who turns out to be a villain, and he has a master plan to release some kind of toxic gas that will kill everyone in New York.  The movie also adds a backstory that links the turtles with April and her father, and I’m pretty sure that backstory didn’t exist in the cartoon or the comics. 

This should have been a fun, lighthearted movie with some laughs and instead it’s dreary and dull.  I was bored the entire time.  I think TMNT fans are going to be very disappointed.

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