Sunday, August 23, 2015

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

So, we get a reboot of the old school TMNT franchise. This time it is under the guidance of Michael Bay's studio. It does tend to pay tribute to the other versions of the Turtles while having its own vision. However, like other Bay's projects, the script has some major issues with some strange plot points. TMNT is a highly flawed movies, but it isn't total train wreck. 
 I actually like the use of the lore from earlier versions of the turtles.
We had a fully animated CGI movie from the early 2000s. And, that movie was tied to the live action movies from the 80s. The new movie uses a lot of stuff from the old cartoon show, such as April O'Neil working as a TV anchor. Plus they throw in all the pizza jokes you can handle. However, there are elements from the old movies used in this remake too. Splinter is merely a mutated rat and not a human turned into a rat such as it is depicted in the cartoon show.

Despite what critics say, there are some really good things about the movie.

I liked the interactions between the turtles. Each one has a personally, which was lacking in the first cartoon series. You get the feeling they really are brothers in this movies. Plus, each turtle has a unique look which sets them apart from the other ones. They are dressed differently and have completely different body shapes. I love this a lot and I wished the old cartoon took this route.

The CGI ranges from bad to pretty good. However, the Turtles are animated very well. And, they look outstanding. I think they did a better job with CGI than the recent Transformers movie. However, the CGI humans are terrible. Sometimes when the CGI creatures interact with humans, the humans turn into CGI models and it looks bad.

However, the problems really outweigh the positives aspects.

The script is horrendous. While I am not asking for a masterpiece, I do want the script to make some sense within its own universe. It falls apart with the logic behind the villains plot. So, the bad guys want to infect the world and make money off of the cure, which the turtle have in their blood stream.

It doesn't make much sense. Now, what was their plan anyway?

And, then there is Megan Fox. Everything you hated about her in the Transformers movies is right here in front for TMNT. Fox either can't act or just doesn't give a crap. He dull line reading just pulls you out of the story and clearly she is just eye candy and nothing more. April O'Neil, in some versions, is a very active character and knew how to handle a sword. Plus she is a scientist. Here, they try their best to bring April into the Turtles lore by making her important factor in their creation, but it feels shoehorned.

With Megan Fox's acting taking down the movie notch and the script being poorly written, there is another problem in the form of Shredder. I kept hearing that William Fichtner was supposed to be the Shredder, and he was supposed to be the main villain. However, I heard something happened during filming and they split Shredder and into two separate characters. This was allegedly done late in the filming, and it feels that way too. The Shredder seems to be an after thought.

William Fichtner gets to play another bad guy that who is a second fiddle to another bigger villain just like The Lone Ranger. Actually, Eric Sacks is just a cleaner version of Butch Cavendish from Lone Ranger. I like Fichtner as an actor, but he's just a poor villain.

From Arrested Development, Will Arnett does have an extensive role. He plays the friend zone guy that is in love with April O'Neil. He's not very funny in this thing and is clearly trying to pull out a laugh from a weak script. He supposed to be the comic relief, but it doesn't really work in the same manner as those comedic characters in the TF movies.

While Bay didn't direct this, his tropes are all over this. However, Jonathan Liebesman directed this thing. There really isn't anything that stands out as being his work, and it feels like a Bay movie than anything else without all the stereotypes.

The Turtles are great characters and fun to watch. Each one has defining characteristic. They all look different and interesting. Yet, the movie has some serious plot flaws in the form of the two villains and their overall plot to destroy the world. Megan Fox is terrible as usual and has no business in the movie. The movie isn't as bad as some critics and fans claim. I say you can see the movie just for the Turtles and nothing more.

Grade: C-

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