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Overall Rating

Awesome: 26.67%
Worth A Look: 3.33%
Average: 23.33%
Pretty Bad: 17.78%
Total Crap28.89%

7 reviews, 48 user ratings

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Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl in 3-D, The
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by Erik Childress

"Yeah, I Liked Spy Kids 3-D Too!"
3 stars

How cool would it be to have a dad who would not only listen to stories about your dreams, but took those ideas and made a whole movie out of them? As long as it’s not Michael Lohan, that’s pretty darn cool. Thankfully it’s Robert Rodriguez who has no qualms about mixing up his hyperviolent actioners with perfect kids fare like the Spy Kids trilogy and, now, Shark Boy and Lava Girl. From the 1-D of the subconscious to the 2-D of reality, Rodriguez goes a step further as he did with the third Spy Kids film and gone three-dimensional on the audience again. Although where Rodriguez takes steps forward with his advancement of digital cinema, he would be advised to take a step back from the chintzy, plastic red-and-blue eyewear since what’s on the screen is already more than enough.

Part Willy Wonka, part Wizard of Oz, part NeverEnding Story, the adventures begin in the stories of Max (Cayden Boyd) who writes in his dream journal about the boy who became one with the sharks and the girl hotter than any until he finally grasps puberty. The kids at school bully him around. The teacher, Mr. Electricidad (George Lopez, who should stick to stand-up) would rather his students write true-life essays. Mom and dad (Kristin Davis & a rather uncomfortable David Arquette) have conflicting ideas, not only about Max’s insistence that his dreamy friends are real, but also about staying together.

One school day Max’s dreams become a reality when Shark Boy (Taylor Lautner) and Lava Girl (Taylor Dooley) crash into his classroom and whisk him away to help save their planet, which is “so cool it would make you drool.” And why wouldn’t it when it comes with its own Land of Milk & Cookies? It’s quite clear that Planet Drool and its inhabitants are an amalgamation of Max’s dreams and reality. The nefarious villain drops the “idad” from his teacher and is able to control children by keeping them from dreaming; a freshly cynical and pointed observation in a world full of color and imagination.

Although the color part is hard to oculate when obscured through the red-and-blues. This outdated concept has survived somehow but still resembles little more than a look through a Viewmaster; which if I wanted I’d just head over to Toys ‘R’ Us or watch the opening credits to Wonderfalls. Other than a perilous trek across an ice bridge where the ViewmasterVision actually adds some depth to the potential plummet, the 3-D is more of a distraction. The “jump-right-at-you” effect isn’t that thrilling and, even more baffling, it’s used so sparingly. Maybe the kids can still enjoy the cheap gimmick, but adults will balk and so will any child fortunate enough to see how brilliantly it works in IMAX. We’ll still all wait to see how well it works with Lucas’ forthcoming enhancements to the Star Wars series.

Things certainly never get heavier than that in this world though. Rodriguez keeps it so light and fluffy that even the puns on dreams and the character traits whiz by and catch us smiling rather than groaning. We’ve already accepted the literal Train of Thought and Stream of Consciousness, so why should the occasional “she’s a hothead” or “he’s a cold fish” bother us? Kids should adore the film and parents will appreciate the pros and cons of the dream discussion. The only thing they may be concerned about is in the progression of the planets that go by on our way to Drool. “Jupiter…Saturn…Neptune,” speaks Lava Girl. Perhaps Rodriguez should be doled out a bit of gratitude, in this era of gross-out humor, for avoiding the obvious joke about Uranus. It would be interesting for Rodriguez to carry on a series like this in the Harry Potter vein as we watch these kids grow up right in front of us. That way he can bridge his universe for children with those old enough to relish the pleasures of Sin City. Max’s dreams will certainly get more interesting since I know when I was his age, when I dreamt of a crystal heart it always involved Tawny Kitaen.

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originally posted: 06/11/05 03:38:08
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User Comments

10/23/09 Erika I really liked this movie!!!!It was awesome and i wished they would of made a second movie 5 stars
9/10/08 lil jj i like the movie 5 stars
4/21/08 katelyn i love the songs best but i still love the movie 5 stars
3/24/08 Vanessa I really like the song 5 stars
4/18/07 Stevo UK As a film critic, i had to see it. Was Rodriguez High when he thought of this? 1 stars
4/18/07 David Pollastrini Great fx 2 stars
2/15/07 Kristin Stefankiewicz I have an idea for Shark boy and lava girl 2 5 stars
12/31/06 ron steven beautiful movie 5 stars
12/17/06 Danielle santos this movie was so cool i loved ie so much. 5 stars
7/07/06 drydock54321 totally boring 1 stars
5/17/06 Paoal Gonzalez shark boy u are so hot!!!!!!!!!!but I relly did not like the movie 3 stars
4/16/06 Jackie I expected more from the guy who made Spy Kids. Great job Rodreguiz. 2 thumbz way...down! 1 stars
4/08/06 mattew grice i think that sharkboy and lavagirl is the best film i have ever seen 5 stars
2/28/06 someone who hates sharkboy and lavagirl 3d WORST CRAP IVE EVER SEEN THIS MAKES SESAME STREET LOOK AWESOME 1 stars
2/25/06 dupadoit cool 5 stars
2/24/06 kay valentine i want meet with you 5 stars
10/28/05 Jonathon Holmes Rodriguez should be ashamed of himself 1 stars
10/20/05 leanne i thing this movie is the best movie ever 5 stars
10/11/05 Tom Burns Cool scenery, not the best story though. 4 stars
10/10/05 Agent Sands Rodriguez's son is going to hate him when he's older. WHO THE FUCK LET HIM MAKE THIS MOVIE? 1 stars
10/08/05 Teya love it 5 stars
10/06/05 pinhead groovy to the max 5 stars
9/22/05 tatum Robert, every LSD trip does not deserve a film... 1 stars
9/22/05 Fritz The kids couldn't even sit through it. Terrible. 1 stars
9/20/05 Jonathon Holmes Rodriguez should be ashamed of himself 1 stars
9/04/05 homeboy gotta love it 5 stars
9/04/05 Stephanie Throckmorton As with most 3-D films, illusion of things flying out of the screen at you is best part. 3 stars
9/03/05 SharkBoy Best movie Ever !!! any who thourt it sucks is a freak im Sharkboy 5 stars
8/06/05 Zack Note to Robert Rodriguez: YOUR KIDS FILMS SUCK! Make more action flicks! 1 stars
8/03/05 Cin So Deadly 5 stars
7/29/05 dupadoit so cool 5 stars
7/25/05 Eric Rollins Films like this will kill the genre. 1 stars
7/09/05 jess taylor is SOO hot, oh and the movie rocked 5 stars
7/06/05 Cibeus My daughter thought it was as good as Herbie. Someone on screen barfs every five minutes. 2 stars
7/01/05 cool 5 stars
6/30/05 woohoo rad 5 stars
6/29/05 Victoria Sinn Best movie I've ever seen!! 5 stars
6/23/05 nicole i laughed through this whole movie & the glasses made it too dark 4 stars
6/21/05 Linda Tran It was an awsome movie 5 stars
6/21/05 Louise Too dark! My son had to take off the glasses to watch. Bad 3-D; no DVD for us! 2 stars
6/20/05 Pro-Shark Boy Too awesome to say 83 5 stars
6/15/05 Shirin de Silva I thought it was a good flick, although yes, I hate 3d. Saw it three times. 4 stars
6/15/05 matt o'brien this movie this is so fuckin awsome 5 stars
6/15/05 Chris This is The first movie that i have ever seen that gave me a migrane and made me throw up 1 stars
6/14/05 Allan Silliphant Rodriguez blew this by not trying to use the best 3D processing available with colored 3d 3 stars
6/14/05 Agent Sands I've never walked out on a movie B4, but Rodriguez is REALLY testing my patience nowdays!!! 1 stars
6/11/05 Krisan Graves Ouch, the reviews on this one has to hurt! 2 stars
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  10-Jun-2005 (PG)
  DVD: 20-Sep-2005



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