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Overall Rating

Awesome: 21.28%
Worth A Look29.79%
Pretty Bad: 17.02%
Total Crap: 2.13%

5 reviews, 17 user ratings

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TMNT - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2007)
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by EricDSnider

"Everything you expect in a TMNT film. Which can be good or bad."
3 stars

It is my opinion that "TMNT" is as good a movie about teenage mutant ninja turtles as there can possibly be. The protagonists are mutated turtles who have learned martial arts, have grown to the size of adult humans, and have learned English. I really think three stars is as good as you're going to get with this premise.

"TMNT" is aimed at two audiences: 12-year-old boys, and grown men who loved the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in the early 1990s, when they were 12-year-old boys. I did not pay attention to the TMNT phenomenon until much later, when I watched the 1990 feature film and was impressed with how bad it was. What I called "bad," though -- lame jokes, hole-filled plot, clownish acting, etc. -- was apparently what many fans LIKED about it. So take it for what it's worth when I say the new "TMNT" film is a lot like its predecessors.

One way it's better, however, is that it's animated. It never made sense to make live-action films about characters who never looked remotely convincing when played by actors in rubber suits. "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" began life as a comic book, then became an animated TV series; it should have stayed animated. You accept a lot more simplicity, silliness, and just plain dumbness with a cartoon than you do with live-action.

The new film is computer animated, and it looks fantastic. The movement is sleek and fluid, nearly as much so as in a Pixar film. Writer/director Kevin Munroe (his first feature film) and his animators make full use of the technology to give "TMNT" action sequences and visual effects that would be expensive or impossible with real actors and sets.

The story picks up a few years after the last film left off, which means our heroes probably aren't even teenagers anymore, though they're definitely still mutant ninja turtles. They all look the same, so you have to memorize which one has which color headband. Leonardo (blue headband, voice of James Arnold Taylor) has been living in a jungle for a year, sent by Splinter (Mako Iwamatsu) for some training. Back home in New York, Donatello (purple, Mitchell Whitfield) and Michelangelo (orange, Mikey Kelley) are finding non-ninja ways of making a living, while Raphael (red, Nolan North) has assumed de facto leadership of the group and spends his nights as an anonymous crime-fighter called the Nightwatcher.

Then Leonardo comes home, and just in time: A sinister man named Max Winters (Patrick Stewart) is using magic to reanimate ancient statues, which he sends out to collect a batch of ugly monsters, for which he has additional nefarious purposes in mind. Do not trust a man who brings statues to life, and especially do not trust him if he uses the statues as monster-fetchers. You can take that one to the bank. But before the turtles can fight Max Winters and his evil horde, they must repair the rift that runs among themselves. Only as a united team can they save the day.

The action scenes are lively enough, and taken for what it is -- a cartoon about crime-fighting reptiles -- it's fine as Saturday-matinee entertainment. The turtles still make corny semi-jokes like, "Why skate a half-pipe when you can skate a sewer pipe?!," and human friends April (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Casey (Chris Evans) are still on hand to get in the way. If you liked the previous TMNT films, then I can't imagine why you wouldn't like this one, too.

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originally posted: 03/26/07 19:57:47
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User Comments

4/06/19 Kengh CGI's performance is very good, but the content is different from the previous cartoons, wh 1 stars
6/28/12 teenage mutant ninja turtle Teenage mutant ninja turtle movie is the best movie. specifically last week together all of 5 stars
1/01/09 The Dork Knight Definitely merits a sequel. And more Karai, plz ^__^! 5 stars
11/10/08 Monty A great update to the franchise, PG-13 action would have made it perfect. 4 stars
7/20/08 Shaun Wallner Great Kids Film! 4 stars
8/10/07 Charles Tatum Some nicely rendered scenes, but still standard stuff 3 stars
8/08/07 ES It was a great update for the story but there are some huge plot holes, too bad 4 stars
6/15/07 William Goss Fine to keep the kids occupied, but not quite enough for anyone else. 2 stars
5/25/07 David Pollastrini liked the guys in suits from the original better 3 stars
3/31/07 JM Synth Much better than anyone had any reason to believe it would be 4 stars
3/29/07 Jason P. brought my 3-year-old to this and he loved it everybit as much as i did! 4 stars
3/27/07 Tom better than those stupid 80's movies, thankfull the director read the comics first! 5 stars
3/26/07 Sean Y. True to the comics. At least they didn't follow the pointless 87 show. 4 stars
3/26/07 Pokejedservo A fun little movie a tad bit predictable but overall a solid little movie 4 stars
3/25/07 The Talking Elbow I didn't find anything to dislike about this movie. Critics are too bitter. 4 stars
3/24/07 Mike Loved this in the 90's but really didn't now. They should've at least played the old music! 2 stars
3/23/07 huyen nguyen 5 stars
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  23-Mar-2007 (PG)
  DVD: 07-Aug-2007

  23-Mar-2007 (PG)
  DVD: 22-Oct-2007

  05-Apr-2007 (PG)

Directed by
  Kevin Munroe

Written by
  Kevin Munroe

  Patrick Stewart
  Sarah Michelle Gellar
  Chris Evans
  Zhang Ziyi
  Kevin Smith

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