Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Review

This is possibly my last film review for the summer, and it is ending on a really low note. I grew up with the Ninja Turtles, and even watch the new show on Nickelodeon. I think the animated shows are mostly great, and I even enjoyed the films (although I have not seen the third film). When I saw initial previews for this film, I thought it had some potential. Now that I saw the film, I am not looking forward to the sequel. While the film is not a complete disaster, it is riddled with problems.
Heroes in the Half Shell
This film does have many problems, but there are aspects that it gets right. First of all, the turtles are perfect. I really like their designs. They were nicely varied, and well animated. I thought their designs gave them a bit more character. I know that the turtles were created through the use of motion capture, and I thought each of the actors did a fine job with their characters. They all inhabited the turtle’s personalities and spirit very well. Overall, the turtles were very true to their portrayal in pervious films and television shows. The only other positive I can give the film is some of the camera work. There was a particular scene that involves the passage of time that was fantastic. I thought it was really creative, and very well done. There were several other shots that were also interesting, but many more that were pretty bland.
A Disjointed Experience
While the film handles the turtles very well, they do not have nearly enough screen time. The film should have just been renamed to “April O’ Neil”. This brings me to my first point, Megan Fox cannot act. Throughout the film she bears this stupid expression on her face, and her delivery is completely off. Whenever she tries to say something intelligent I could not find it believable. Next up is Will Arnett. He is very bland, and often unfunny. He delivered maybe two or three funny lines, but other than that his character was pointless. William Fichtner plays one of the villains, and he started off alright. He was not terribly complex, but his performance was solid. As the film progressed his performance just went downhill. Tony Shalhoub does the voice of Splinter, and I thought he was completely miscast. His voice did not match Splinter at all, and really detracted from the character. Also, I thought the CGI used for him was horrible. Now onto the main villain of the film: The Shredder. I thought he was simple bad. Eric Sacks and him had a master plan, but it was a really dumb plan. He did not have any personality, and his armor looked terrible. I also hated the excessive knives on his armor. It just looked ridiculous. The plot of the film had some moments, but for the most part it is very unoriginal. The writing in the film ranged from mediocre to atrocious, and I thought the score was terrible. It was far too reminiscent to the score of the Transformers films.
Closing Remarks
From someone who adore the Ninja Turtles, this film was a let down. While there is some fun to be had, particularly with the Turtles, almost everything else about the film is not good at all. After a pretty big opening at the box office, a sequel has already been announced. I for one, could not be less excited.
TMNT

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