Hey, dudes and dudettes! It’s Dash Jordan here, and I told you guys you wouldn’t have to wait long for my next review. So, let me ask a question…who here remembers how awful that last ‘Ninja Turtles’ movie was? I sure do. I’ve been a fan all my life and I hated what Michael Bay did with that movie, and he didn’t even have to be in the director’s chair this time around. However, you remember a while back I did a ‘Dash News’ on a certain sequel? Well, it’s about that time…Pizza Time! Let’s tear this sewer stinker a new one!
Wait…something’s not right.
‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows’ is the 2016 sci-fi action/comedy based on the widely popular franchise, and is also the follow-up to the 2014 reboot; still produced by Michael Bay, but this time around is directed by newcomer Dave Green. This film is also currently receiving mixed to negative reviews. At the same time, however, the reviews are considerably a bit more positive than its 2014 predecessor.
Yeah, I was as surprised as you were when I found that out. So, exactly what was different about this one? I was wondering about that myself. The more I think about it, I may have a theory. Unlike most Michael Bay films where the guy usually gets more creative freedom after a first movie, it feels like the studio somehow gave Bay less control as a producer. I say this because this installment almost feels like a completely different movie. Unlike the original which was painful, I actually found myself having a bit of fun with this one.
Shut up, guys! I really did, I feel as though more and more movie executives are starting to take Marvel & Disney’s approach to pleasing the fans and giving them what they want. That’s why all of the past few Marvel films succeeded, that’s why ‘Deadpool’ succeeded and that’s why this sequel didn’t end up being worse. I mean, you could make the argument that they crammed too much stuff in this movie…but, come on! You know you smiled and chuckled a little bit to see all of those childhood memories again.
First of all, my prediction turned out to be right. Bebop & Rocksteady were friggin’ awesome and probably the best parts of this movie. Played by Gary Anthony Williams & WWE Superstar, Sheamus respectively, take advantage of the film’s stupidity and have a blast in the role. Not only do Bebop & Rocksteady look awesome, but these two are every bit as stupid as they were on the show. If not, more stupid. We’ve waited for many years to finally see this duo on the big screen. Many, many years…but I say it was worth the wait because they were awesome.
As it turns out, I was also right about another prediction I had. Yep, they did it…they brought in Krang…THEY BROUGHT IN KRANG!!!
I know that some people may be a little mixed on the portrayal of Krang(voiced by Brad Garrett) in this movie. I was a little concerned too, I’ll admit. To be fair, the filmmakers did try their damned hardest to not only bring this villain to life but have him be taken seriously. While not taken too seriously as there are some pretty funny moments with the character, but was actually done pretty well. Krang especially looks just about as slimy and disgusting as I’ve always envisioned him, and I definitely like the updated look of Krang’s robot body.
By the way, two words…TECHNODROME!!!
I know I mentioned my feeling towards how they handled Shredder in the first movie, but I actually didn’t mind the actor they got to play him in this installment. Brian Tee plays Shredder every bit as serious, threatening and evil as he’s always been. Well, except for the original cartoon where he was played more for laughs. My real gripe is that we didn’t get to see that much of him in this movie, especially now that his costume has been scaled down a bit from the last one. Maybe just a nitpick seeing as how Shredder has always been my personal favorite Turtles villain.
Another thing we don’t get to see much of is Stephen Amell’s take on Casey Jones. Honestly, from what I saw, he was pretty good and I would’ve loved to have seen him in more action scenes. Or, at least seen him in the signature Hockey mask more. Once again, nitpicks of a fanboy. My personal favorite portrayal of my favorite non-Turtles character is still Elias Koteas from the 1990 film, but Amell earns my respect.
I may have had fun, but that does not make the movie perfect. Yes, I give the filmmakers props for making this movie feel more like the original cartoon. At the same time…have you tried watching the original cartoon lately? It’s fun…but it’s also kind of stupid.
Two things that really got under my skin in this movie is Tyler Perry’s portrayal of Baxter Stockman and the fact that Megan Fox is still playing April O’Neil. Ladies first, Fox STILL sucks. I’m not denying Megan Fox’s attractiveness, all I’m saying this that she would probably be a lot more attractive if she had some actual acting ability. Instead, we see her return as a vapid, emotionless Maybelline commercial instead of at least attempting to give the iconic character a personality other than “being cute”. Christ, where’s Alexa Vega when you need her?
Shut up, Megan. Anyway, Tyler Perry as Baxter Stockman…not a fan. I’m glad that they decided to make Baxter a black man like he was from the comics instead of the white-washed version from the cartoon, and Perry is nowhere near as bad as Megan Fox, but his take on the character just came off a little too annoying and not in that good way. I respect Tyler Perry as a person and as a businessman in his own right, but he’s definitely not the best actor. He’s got a lot of work to do when he comes back in his fly form.
You know something? I’m reviewing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, and I have yet to talk about the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! Honestly, more than a huge improvement over the 2014 film. The acting and voices are slightly better, their personalities are more defined, and even the design of the Turtles has slightly improved. Maybe it’s me, but they just look cleaner, smoother, brighter, and a bit more colorful.
You know what this movie reminds me of? It kind of reminds me of ‘Batman Forever’. Some pretty bad aspects, but has a few good things going for it and is surprisingly enjoyable. Think of the 2014 version as if it was ‘Batman & Robin’. Megan Fox is still the worst actor in this whole thing, some of the writing is still hokey and clumsy, but still a step in the right direction so far. Just think of this sequel as if you’re watching the original cartoon. It’s stupid, corny, and isn’t very smart. But, it’s still a lot more fun and cohesive than its predecessor. The BEST Turtles movie is still the 1990 version, but ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows’, you can count that as one of the good ones. This installment as all the makings of becoming cult favorite or a guilty pleasure, at best. Not as good as the 1990 film, its 1991 sequel, or 2007’s ‘TMNT’. But, it could’ve been just as bad as ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3’ or its 2014 predecessor. Thankfully, it wasn’t. This movie was truly more fun than I thought it would be.
Well, that’s all for now. Hope you guys enjoyed the review, maybe get around to checking out the movie. Until next time…
Written by Shane Moose
Videos & Photos:
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: Out Of The Shadows(owned by Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon Movies, Platinum Dunes, Gama Entertainment, Mednick Productions & Heavy Metal)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles(2012 TV Series)(owned by Nickelodeon Animation Studios, Lowbar Productions & Mirage Studios)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles(1987 TV Series)(owned by Murakami-Wolf-Swenson, Mirage Studios, Surge Licensing, Group W Productions & Eyemark Entertainment)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles(2014 Reboot)(owned by Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon Movies, Platinum Dunes, Gama Entertainment, Mednick Productions & Heavy Metal)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles(1990 Film)(owned by New Line Cinema, Golden Harvest, Limelight Entertainment, 888 Productions, Mirage Enterprises & Northshore Investments)
Dogma(owned by Lionsgate & View Askew Productions)
The Tomorrow People(owned by Berlanti/Plec, FremantleMedia North America, CBS Television Studios, Warner Bros. Television & Warner Bros. Television Distribution)