Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) by Michael Bay
Cowabunga dudes
Last week marked the first edition of Quero@TheMovies. While most of my colleagues decided to check out The Drop (the sophomore feature film of Belgian director Michaël Roskam), myself, Jeroen, Mark & René decided to watch Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the only right option out there. Sure, director Michael Bay is known for serving up hot garbage, but the TMNT franchise will always have a magnetic pull on me. I have many fond memories of the first animated series, the theme song for which gives me chills to this very day, the awesome figurines, and the 1990 Steve Barron movie. 

I don't know how else to put it, guys.

I like turtles.

Sure, I had my reservations. Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and party dude Michaelangelo looked plain weird in the trailers I saw, I had come across several scathing reviews, and, even though Megan Fox is nothing bad to look at, her Jennifer's body of work doesn't particularly inspire confidence. New theme song Shell Shocked by Juicy J, Wiz Khalifa and Ty Dolla $ign did, however, immediately strike a chord.

Sure, it's no Ninja Rap, but then again, nothing is.

Here's for the plot:

Shredder (Tohoru Masamuno) and his Foot Clan are taking over New York City. When Channel 6 New reporter April O'Neil (Fox) witnesses a shadowy figure taking out a bunch of Foot Soldiers on the docks, she goes in full-on researcher mode, desperately trying to confirm his identity. When the Foot Clan attacks a subway stations next, she encounters the vigilantes - four of them - and follows them to a rooftop, finding out that they are, in fact, four 6-foot ninja turtles named Leonardo, Michaelangelo, Donatello and Raphael. At home, April starts going through boxes filled with documents, photos and videos on "Project Renaissance". Upon realizing that those lab turtles of 15 years ago look awfully familiar, she decides to seek out her deceased father's former lab partner, Eric Sacks (William Fichtner), to shed some light on the project.

Sure, Bay's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is big, brainless and loud, but it's also, above all, a fun and entertaining 101-minute ride. These reinvented turtles quickly grew on me, and why wouldn't they? They might be super-jacked now, but their unique personality traits were honored, with wisecracking goofball Michaelangelo by far the most appealing one. TMNT offers nothing you haven't seen before, basically serving up one action sequence after another, but if you're a fan of the franchise and you don't particularly mind a lack of depth, I'm sure you will enjoy this guilty pleasure. Cowabunga!

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