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Movies for the Week of August 8th, 2014

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

turtlesAlex Jowski: I don’t want to see this movie. It’s not for me at all- this movie is made for a very specific audience that I haven’t been a part of for many MANY years. This is not the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles I grew up with in the tail end of the 1980s. This isn’t a reboot of those turtles so I’m not going to cry “childhood raped” or anything like that. There have been SOOOO many iterations of the Ninja Turtles in the near 30 years since the cartoon series I loved, each catering to what children were into AT THAT TIME. While I hated every version of Ninja Turtles cartoons, live action or films after the ones I liked- those generations of turtles are fondly remembered by the children that grew up with them. So this isn’t a reboot.. it’s an evolution of the product to what kids are in to right now.

I was watching Nickelodeon the other day with the kids and every commercial break was promos for TMNT – with child hosts very motivated with that kind of excitement that only a child could have for this movie. Will Arnett was there, joking around with these kids and sharing their enthusiasm for all these clips and behind the scenes featurettes. Based upon the glee these kids on TV had for the movie and how much they sold it, you’d think this was the greatest movie ever made. I watch the trailer, I watch those clips and I say to myself “This is total shit. This is the worst fucking thing I’ve ever seen.” However, I then recall that the first TMNT movie was sold to me THIS EXACT SAME WAY and, at 8 years old, I ate every bit of that shit up. And the original TMNT is crap when looked at in hindsight. This movie, it’s crap. But it’s for kids who will eat it up – this movie was in no way, shape or form made for people that grew up with other generations of the Ninja Turtles.

Brad Jones: Well, it’s going to be interesting talking about the trailer, since I just saw this movie last night. And, well, what I’ll say is that if you’re sold on this trailer, then you might like the movie. The movie is a 100 minute trailer. Hell, I’ve seen the movie, and I still feel like I HAVEN’T seen it, because it IS just a long trailer. It doesn’t stop, it never lets characters grow or breathe, it’s one of the most shallow films I’ve seen this year. And much like the trailer, I could not tell what in the hell was going on half the time, because Jonathan Liebsman is a terrible director and should never direct another action film again. Even before I saw the movie, nothing about this screamed that it was some kind of ruination of the franchise, because let’s face it, there’s a LOT of bad Ninja Turtles products. And this is just another bad Turtles installment.

Mike White: I was just a little too old to experience TMNT in any form other than the video game. Even though Vanilla Ice did a heroic effort with “Ninja Rap”, I didn’t see Secret of the Ooze or the first TMNT film. That said, I really have very little interest in seeing this one, either, especially as the TMNT themselves kind of turn my stomach with their big round teeth and freaky faces. Now, give me a movie about William Fitchner and I’ll be there.

Glenn Criddle: CGI-gasm in half shell… It looks about as good as it was likely to be, an action filled violence extravaganza. Having sworn off watching any Michael Bay movies it may be a get out clause that this wasn’t directed by him though it does carry his visual stamp for sure. I was never a fan of the turtles particularly as I was just past the target demographic when the originals came out, but I’d be tempted to see it even though I can’t exactly see much here beyond the most basic of action movie content beyond the visual element. Put it this way, if I’m going to see it it would have to be at the cinema because I expect only the fleeting spectacle of the fight scenes and the likes will make it worth it for non-fans of the source materials. It doesn’t look painful, hell it even looks like it could be fun and it has the familiar banter between the turtles…. It’s a maybe for me.

Nuttawut Permphithak: As a guy who has never seen the original show, I think the 1990 TMNT movie is amazing! It’s a gritty action/adventure films that looks awesome even for nawadays. Fast forward to 2014, we have a Michael Bay (Who’s made only TWO good films… Bad Boys and Pain & Gain. The rest of them are utter shit) producing TMNT. It looks better than what I expected, until we see Mecha-Shredder. It’s just… come on! I don’t know, I may watch it sooner or later. BTW, I’m pretty sure that the dubstep song in trailer is the remake version of this masterpiece:

William Wright: I didn’t grow up with this franchise and while I admit that this may have been the best trailer made for this movie, I am really not interested.

Charley McMullen: Meh. Another once-great and long-forgotten franchise getting an unnecessary reboot from Michael Bay, which will be insufferably bland because it’s trying to appeal to every living person in the world, which will inevitably lead to another round of Moron vs. Hipster, with cries of “It was just like the cartoon!” being immediately met with “So?! The cartoon was nothing like the comic book!” This is par for the course. Wake me up when summer’s over. I’ll be in the garage. [closes door; starts ignition]

mister X: first time i stumbled across the TMNT cartoon was mid-scene then the bumper came up saying the title

i laffed out loud for at least 3 mins

watched the rest of the show n’ dug it for what it was (n’ sensed it was neutered for some reason) then noticed the ‘based on the…’ credit-so i asked bout it at my comic shop n’ they hooked me up with the B/W originals…which i enjoyed but didn’t find life-changing. then later, the movie came out…n’ i consider the first TMNT movie one of the most genuinely SURPRISING cinema forays during my geek formative years. it was WAY better than i ever expected it to be (glad BATMAN influence was still strong enuff to give it the gritty foggy semi-sanitized sleaze it needed ala NY).

then the sequels came out n’ i moved on, so i don’t feel like this is assaulting a childhood treasure-this is just bay doing what bay does…n’ since we KNOW what bay does just accept that n’ watch it or not, but i will say this:

tonally, the trailer updates the turtles into today’s world in a way i can kinda accept…sue me

n’ if splinter holds his own against shredder just long ENUFF…this might even be kinda fun
splinter

Justin Widerski: Alright this trailer’s going to get all the jokes and all the hate so I’ll be frank: This film doesn’t matter. In the clusterfuck of blockbusters post-Bay and post-Marvel this makes no difference at all. Nobody will remember this film in five years except angry internet nerds who want to make it the extremely obvious butt of their jokes. No time or energy should be wasted even acknowledging that this bland, cliche, black-hole of creativity exists. Also the plural of “Ninja” is “Ninja” not “Ninjas.”

About The Author
Justin Widerski
Justin Widerski

Justin Widerski aka Etrigan Blood is a time-traveling alien ginger with a penchant for sarcasm and a weakness for muffins. Into comics, horror, anime, video games, Star Trek, Doctor Who, etc… Justin is a jack of all trades when it comes to geek fandoms, but a master of none. He started doing film reviews as a way to appease the voices in his head, but after getting proper medication he just does them for fun and in the pitiful hopes of doing it professionally. Justin’s dabbled in podcasting, with a total 2 1/2 failed shows and used to be creative director on a local cable program called YRU-Up. He currently studies Film/TV at *redacted* and is a news writer for Geek Juice.

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