REVIEW: Turbo

Another two week session of no blog entries! I was working another camp session in Princeton, and thus had no time to write. However, now that I’m done working this summer, entries should resume their weekly updates! Let’s kick this off with a movie I saw a couple days ago: DreamworksTurbo!

Plot:
 
Turbo‘s premise is cool. Theo, a garden snail that dreams of being a racer comes into contact with nitrous (the stuff you see in racing games and the Fast & Furious series that gives racing cars a temporary boost of insane speed) and is able to utilize it, much to his brother Chet’s dismay. After some unfortunate events, he and Chet are fired from the garden they work at and shortly after Chet is taken by crows. Using his speed, Theo (who I will now call Turbo because that’s what he calls himself) follows the crows and saves Chet, only to be captured by humans and entered into a snail racing competition. Turbo shows off his insane speed, and is entered into the Indianapolis 500, where he competes with the best of the best racing cars.

The plot itself flows quite nicely. I was pleasantly surprised to see some real character growth in a film that looked, to me, like one of those silly and fun kid’s films.

Acting:
 
Let me just get this out of the way: the actors for voicing were amazing. Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson, and Snoop Dog/Lion? Sign me up! The acting was great, the one-liners were funny. All the characters meshed together really well. I enjoyed it.

Atmosphere:
 
The atmosphere is, well, pretty much racing. The animation itself is nicely done, the effects are really cool, and watching a snail go over 200 mpg alongside formula 1 racing cars in an iconic race was really cool to watch. Also, the music choices and the definite reference to pop culture was very funny. It was nice to see an animated film that referenced remixes being made on the Internet (and the remix was actually pretty catchy!)

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If you’re looking for something fun and cool to watch, or you want to see a snail body formula 1 racing cars, check out Turbo! It’s a solid film.

Rating: 3 out of 5 (stars)
 
Just Sayin’.

REVIEW: Epic

A couple weeks ago, instead of going to see The Great Gatsby, my girlfriend and I decided to see a movie called Epic. To be honest, I thought it was by Dreamworks or Disney at first until I did some research on Blue Sky Studios, and I have to say, their production value is really good. 

Okay, on with the review!


Plot:
 
The plot here is interesting, but not something I haven’t seen before. There’s a secret society of miniature people (the human-like Leafmen, the monster-like Boggons, and then the plants and animals are all living as well) that live in the forest, with the Leafmen and Boggons engaged in war that will determine if the forest lives or dies. Mary Katherine (or M.K. for short) goes to live with her eccentric father (who is trying to find the tiny people) due to a request made by her late mother, but after that goes awry, she ventures into the forest and is transformed to a mini size by the Queen of the Forest, Tara, and gets caught up in the war. It’s definitely an interesting angle for the way a forest lives and dies.


The characters all have pretty noticeable arcs, and they’re all pretty solid, although, like most of these movies, love between M.K. and the obvious male love interest happens ridiculously fast. I think it’s sad that that’s something I’ve become accustomed to, but given the relatively short length of the movie (about 90 minutes), I can see why it happens so fast. I wish more movies would take it slow, though.


Acting:
 
The acting is actually pretty good. Nothing really amazing, but nothing bad, either. Not much to say, here. It’s just really solid (except for a few parts, but they’re negligible).


Atmosphere:
 
The animation to build up the atmosphere is really, really good. The way they depict the forest and its secret inhabitants is really nice, and Queen Tara’s control of the forest was really cool to look at. They depict her walking over water with lily pads that instantly move to be under her feet as she moves, she can make tree branches attack with the flick of her wrist – really, the animation is superb. Also, the way things decay is pretty cool, too.
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If you’re a fan of animated films (or Ice Age) check Epic out. It’s a neat little film that’s really solid. It’s not incredible, but definitely a solid choice if you’re looking for a film to go see.
Rating: 3 out of 5 (stars)
 
Just Sayin’.