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Overall Rating

Awesome: 0%
Worth A Look: 6.67%
Average: 6.67%
Pretty Bad: 6.67%
Total Crap80%

2 reviews, 18 user ratings

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Reef, The (2006)
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by brianorndorf

"Nonsense from 2006 comes to Blu-ray"
1 stars

Animation releases always seem to come in pairs, with Pixar and Dreamworks locked in an endless battle for supremacy, often working similar plots to radically different ends. In 2006, the world had just about enough fish tales to last a lifetime, with “Finding Nemo” and “Shark Tale” covering all there was to know about colorful, sassy animated fish and their foibles. But that didn’t stop South Korea, who teamed up with a fringe American animation studio to create “The Reef,” yet another story of underwater adventure, only this time with Freddie Prinze, Jr. in the lead role, with a budget roughly the size of a catered lunch at Pixar.

Separated from his parents when they’re caught by a net in polluted Boston waters, young Pi (Freddie Prinze, Jr.) is instructed to head to the rich waters of The Reef to seek guidance from his aunt Pearl (Fran Drescher). After settling in and meeting the locals (including Andy Dick), Pi discovers soul mate Cordelia (Evan Rachel Wood), who’s promptly stolen by shark bully Troy (Donal Logue). Seeking a Reef survival education from the wise turtle Nerissa (Rob Schneider), Pi is schooled in all manner of water manipulation and self-preservation, soon returning to tyrant Troy to reclaim Cordelia and protect The Reef from further shark disruptions.

“The Reef” is pretty shameless when it comes to stealing chunks of “Finding Nemo” to create a light adventure for extremely young audiences. Anyone over toddler status is going to recognize the plagiarism right away. Originality is not served up here, leaving the filmmakers with one option left to truly impress: resplendent execution. Trouble is, that’s not here either, with “The Reef” resembling a glorified screensaver, boasting animation that’s smooth rather than textured, and a few scenes appear downright unfinished. It’s a shoddy-looking picture with little in the way of a budget to construct a highly expressive deep blue sea excursion. Instead, it’s loudly colored and stiffly rendered.

The voice cast also lacks direct star power, with the talent assembled doing their damndest to sound excited about this tedious film. With a script primarily interested in wordplay and bathroom humor (the fart and pee jokes fly fast here), the cast has to juggle lame lines and anemic confrontations, with Rob Schneider assuming most of the heavy lifting here, contributing Christopher Walken and James Cagney impressions to help illuminate his ubiquitous presence in the picture, taking on several roles of diverse personality. Hey, at least Schneider is trying to spice up this bland brew, which is more than I can say for everyone else.

Again, “The Reef” is strictly for young audiences, who might feel a twinge of excitement when Pi receives the Miyagi treatment from Nerissa, or when our hero fish confronts Troy in the grand finale. Anyone else in the room when this film begins is on their own. Don’t say I didn’t try to warn you.

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originally posted: 02/27/11 01:05:49
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User Comments

5/21/17 Zero Shit 1 stars
12/04/13 Retro This is the worst film I have ever watched, not even Plan 9 from Outer Space can compare 1 stars
10/25/13 Alison Full of misogynistic crap, the bit where the shark bullies the Pink Girl fish is rapey 1 stars
8/31/13 Thami Sheshane Nothing wrong with the animation, but in these kinds of films I expect humor and I did not 4 stars
8/25/13 Dr Devil It's a pile of generic crap. Nothing is special. Animation looks cheap, even on the box. 1 stars
5/10/13 Rachel God awful film. Couldn't get past the shark wanting to mate with a tiny fish (!!??) 1 stars
2/14/13 mark right up there with the room. also, 10 million dollars. 1 stars
6/26/12 Billy Barnett This movie sucks, i find it hard to believe that they spent 10,000,000 on this flim 1 stars
4/17/11 J This is the worst film I've ever seen, even kids hated it! 1 stars
10/09/10 Maddy Agreed. Theres no redeeming quality about this film. Like at all. 2 stars
10/01/10 Chuck The film isn't that bad, sure it's not Finding Nemo material but it's Home alone 2 standard 3 stars
1/01/09 Olivia why does Pi always have a 1cm forcefield around? i didn't even finish half of the thing, 1 stars
9/22/08 Bjørn Clausen I didn't even make it through the first half hour, before I turned it off. A waste of money 1 stars
8/18/08 Sam the worst animation ever most peoples university projects are better than this 1 stars
6/26/08 Mario This film is definetly made for kids, and even kids might get bored. 2 stars
4/03/08 David Cohen For a blatant knock off clearly produced as cheaply and quickly as possible, it wasn't bad 3 stars
10/22/07 MikeW Don't even bother with this one... trust the reviews. 1 stars
10/17/07 Annette Dodge The revue is harsh. Not that bad for kids 4 stars
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  DVD: 08-Mar-2011

  09-Feb-2007 (U)


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