TMNT ~ Review

tmnt

There are a ton of comic book-based movies coming out this year, but only one with four human-sized turtles and a rat. The trailer for TMNT looked promising and, having seen the movie, I can say that it certainly delivered. While it is a kids’ movie, it’s one that’ll satisfy the big kids, too.

TMNT
The gang’s all here

From start to finish, TMNT is a smooth ride of nerd film - that is, computer animation. Every character was fluid, colorful, and moody, just like they would be in real life. In fact, it was not just the characters but everything in the movie was done with just the right amount of detail. Camera pans and angles were superb. The overall style of TMNT, with its overstretched faces and limbs, was more anime than it was realistic, but I didn’t see that as a drawback; instead, I saw that more as an opportunity for the franchise to stake a claim in its own style so as not to look like anything else out there. The music featured in the movie fit its quick pace well - I didn’t hear anything that made me think, “I wonder if they’ll regret this in 10 years?” The voice acting was very well done and included some big names like Patrick Stewart, Laurence Fishburne, Sarah Michelle Gellar, and Kevin Smith - although, I’ll admit, it did take a few minutes to forget what I was accustomed to with the Turtles cartoon from the early 90’s, especially with Splinter’s voice (acted by Mako, who sadly passed away only one day after he was announced as the voice of Splinter). The audience at the theatre was a strong mix of adults and children, and I think it’s safe to say that practically everyone in both groups enjoyed it.

TMNT
Our green-skinned heroes face new adversaries

With all of its good points, I have to say that I was only really disappointed with only one thing: it felt too short. The supposed run time was an hour and a half, but it felt more like only an hour. I would like to have seen a little more fighting and more background on the Foot Clan, but perhaps there’ll be enough bonus content on the DVD to satisfy that yearning. I guess this could actually be seen as a positive trait - the movie kept me so interested that I lost track of time.

Another small note is that, without a Shredder-like adversary, it seemed like the Turtles were kinda all over the place at times, instead of being focused on “kicking shell”. On the other hand, perhaps this was done purposely to feed into the fact that the Turtles could only focus once they unified as a team. Either way, it didn’t impact my initial reaction to the movie and it’s a fairly minor detail overall.

TMNT
The new Foot Clan, sans Shredder

I’m glad that the movie openly lent itself to the idea of another, where the premise will be an enemy of the Turtles’ past. Shredder? We’ll see.

TMNT
Raph and Leo square off

Highlights

The rooftop fight between Raph and Leo definitely stands out.

Grades

Comedy: As any Turtles fan would expect, humor was used throughout the movie but by no means should TMNT be classified as a comedy.
Drama: The most dramatic moment was the fight between Leo and Raph - it reminded me of me and my brother.
Horror: None.
Suspense: Nada.
Action: Lots of beautifully animated martial arts action, including a couple of relatively short “epic” Lord of the Rings-style group fights.

In Short

If you were a fan of the Turtles before, you will be again. If you weren’t, you just might be once you’re done with TMNT. It’s a great movie for the whole fan-damily, as it’s got plenty of story and action sequences, yet it’s not too violent for the kids or too boring for adults.

Buy It Rent It Don’t Bother

PS - If you haven’t seen Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, here’s what you’re missing:

3 Comments on “TMNT ~ Review”

  1. Only musing here, but I think I may be forgetting the very first line of the TMNT cartoon theme song. Here’s a challenge: help me complete it. I know more than this, but really don’t feel like typing alot.
    “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” (x3)
    “Splinter taught them to be ninja teens (he’s a radical rat) Leonardo leads, Donatello does machines (that’s a fact, jack) Raphael is cool but rude (gimme a break)…”

  2. “Heroes in a half shell - TURTLE POWER!” That goes right in between your two quotes. Ah, memories… :)

  3. Michaelangelo is a party dude!!!! ( partyyyyyy!!!!)

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