Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

by Steven Panzarella (@ProCreateSteve)

The Short-I left Michael Bay's reboot of TMNT with more questions than answers, mostly wondering why this exists and why the director turned producer Bay didn't take more credit for having his finger prints all over it. The script is only plot points and opportunities for members of the cast to talk about how attractive Megan Fox is and the action is entertaining but the all of the human characters are lame, poorly scripted, unneeded impediments for what should have been a fun time at the movies. The turtles themselves provide the only real source of entertainment but they can't save this diabolical reboot from being on screen.

The question when a reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was announced was do people still care? a question that will be answered by Box office numbers but Michael Bay took the role of producer giving directing duties to Jonathan Liebsman (Wrath of the Titans, Battle:LA). Yet once you watch TMNT it's hard not to see those Michael Bay fingerprints all over the place, whether it's camera angles, plot points or the script written by the trio of Josh Appelbaum(Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol), Andre Nemec (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol), and Evan Daugherty(Divergent). The script is an embodiment of the 21st century Michael Bay movie, no character development, loads of plot, and horrible written dialogue that turns the hilarious and witty Will Arnett into a misogynistic jackass whose only job in this film is to continually comment about how hot Megan Fox is. It turns the movie into a despicable waste of time and energy only made for the enjoyment of children who only care about the action and the turtles.

Megan Fox in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

The only aspect of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles worth seeing is the turtles themselves who are strangely underutilized to further the plot. In a place where an important scene to get to better know the heroes in a half shell would fit we are instead given more of April O’Neil. In fact it becomes apparent that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is more about April then it is about the actual Ninja Turtles. The turtles are the only bright spot in the film, voiced by Johnny Knoxville, Noel Fisher, Alan Ritchson and Jeremy Howard whom all add a little personality to this ridiculous affair. The turtles are given opportunities to create memorable moments including a fun chase sequence, and a number of cute moments that work fairly well. Even those moments are not enough, maybe saving the best of the turtles for a sequel.

As far as the humans in the film are concerned besides a few moments with April (Megan Fox) and her roommate (SNL's Abby Elliot) the human interaction is an insane mix of characters moving the plot forward, William Fitchner's sketchy millionaire Eric Sacks turns into a bad bond Villain towards the films climax as he tells his entire master plan to the turtles just in time for them to save the day. Megan Fox as the films lead character is unable to sell us on the tenacity of April O’Neil; she can't sell her co-workers on the existence of the turtles so instead of playing her as a tenacious, strong willed reporter she comes off as a babbling lunatic. Maybe all of that was meant to be but you take a normally very smart character and make her seem a little idiotic.

In closing, it doesn't seem like Liebsman, his screen writers, or the producer Michael Bay thought much about the film's characters and more about pretty action scenes and pointing out the attractiveness of its star. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is nothing more than a waste of time, a formality in the summer movie schedule that will be forgotten almost instantly after you leave the theater.

Grade- D-


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Steven Panzarella: ProCreate Film Critic

Steven Panzarella has been reviewing movies for as long as he can remember, but his passion flourished while working at 88.7 FM WRHU, and writing for popgoestheweek.com.

Steven is ProCreate's resident film critic.


Cast and Crew

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Paramount Pictures

Directed by Jonathan Liebsman

Written by Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec, Evan Daugherty

Starring- Meghan Fox, Will Arnett, William Fichtner, Tony Shalhoub, Johnny Knoxville, Noel Fisher, Alan Ritchson, Jeremy Howard, Whoopi Goldberg, Minae Noki, and Abby Elliott.


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