Friday, June 10, 2016

[Review] Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows

2014's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie was the cinematic equivalent of spoiled cheese--with its awful dialogue, foul attempts at humor, and blurred mess of action sequences. This year's TMNT: Out of the Shadows is a slight improvement, but that isn't really saying much.

Now that the origin story is out of the way, we immediately swoop into Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo, and Raphael's sewer-popping world as they keep the New York City streets safe and do Ninja Turtle stuff. Meanwhile, the villainous Shredder escapes from prison and concocts a plan to unleash the mutants Bebop the Warthog and Rocksteady the Rhino.

As expected, a lot of this is intentionally wacky and over-the-top, but stylistically it plummets into the basic and cringeworthy side of things--the type of stuff that is more likely to make your eyes roll than your sides split. I mean, the film opens with a "Turtle formation? I thought you said SQUIRREL formation!" joke. Will Arnett and Megan Fox return as Vern Fenwick and April O'Neil, respectively, and they're both respectively not good here. Tyler Perry shows up as a mad scientist, and let's just say he isn't the cast's saving grace.

Of course the best players in the story have the least amount of screen time. Dean Winters appears in a small role as a bartender, and I can't help but think there should've been more of him. The slimy Brad Garrett-voiced Krang recalls campy gross-out B-movie monsters in a deliciously amusing way. But the real highlight comes near the beginning during a Knicks vs Clippers game at Madison Square Garden, and DeAndre Jordan makes a slapstick cameo by slipping on a fallen slice of pizza.

The script also addresses the theme of *different* vs *normal*, and the notion of being viewed as a monster by the public. "People fear what they do not understand." But unfortunately, none of it fully pays off as it gets lost in the myriad of Michael Bay-infused action.

Out of the Shadows does have some bright spots, and young kids might get a kick out of it, but overall, there are much more savory options out there, even within the crowded stack of blockbuster franchises.

( 5.5/10 )

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  1. Yea, boy was it corny. The bar scene dialogue was super baddd like is this a 48 hour film project hahaha. I tried to not diss the film too much but I totally agree with you. The length made it hurt more like argh is this over.

    1. Ha yeah. It wouldn't hurt if the writers put in some jokes that didn't stink.

  2. Give me Secret Of The Ooze over this one any day! Great review ;)