Thursday, July 25, 2013

Turbo Review

Towards the beginning of the year, there was a dearth of animated movies and now they are coming out in great abundance. Earlier in the year, Dreamworks took advantage of the dearth of animated movies and turned The Croods into a surprise hit. This time around, Dreamworks' next movie Turbo looks like it is getting lost amidst the abundance of animated movies which include monster hits in Monsters University and Despicable Me 2, with The Smurfs 2 coming around the corner. When I went into The Croods, I wasn't expecting much of anything. I ended up being super surprised because I got a movie that was really funny and super emotional at the same time. The best animated movie of the year. Going into Turbo, I wasn't expecting much of anything, either. I was hoping going into it that I would experience a similar phenomena as in The Croods. However, such was not the case. Turbo was fun, but it was nothing fantastic and several years down the road, most audiences will probably have forgotten that Dreamworks made the movie.

Turbo is the story of a snail who has a dream of racing in the Indy 500. His hero is Indy 500 star Guy Gagne, who is currently winning every single race. Gagne's motto is "No dream is too big. No dreamer is too small." This motivates Turbo the snail to chase his dream and he gets the chance when by a freak accident, he gains the power to travel over 200 miles per hour. On one side this sounds like a cute, original premise for an animated movie. My five year old nephew was super excited to see this movie because he's never seen a movie where a snail can move super fast. On another side, it seems like a silly movie that was put together really fast with not much effort. After seeing the trailers, you have an idea of exactly what is going to happen in the movie. Even if you haven't seen the trailers, 10 or 20 minutes into the movie you will have an idea of exactly what is going to happen in the movie. The biggest problem with the movie is that you won't be wrong. It is super predictable. Now you can have a super predictable movie if there is another aspect of the movie that redeems it. Turbo isn't bad, but it doesn't have anything that outweighs the predictability of it. It has a few laughs, but not much. It tries to be emotional, but you see right through that because it doesn't try hard enough.

One of the best parts of Turbo is it has a fantastic voice cast and everyone does a good job. Ryan Reynolds plays Turbo, the snail with the dream to race in the Indy 500. Paul Giamatti plays Turbo's brother who tries to make him be a normal snail. Michael Pena plays the Mexican guy that discovers Turbo and tries to use him to help his restaurant gain popularity that he co-owns with his brother, played by Luis Guzman. Samuel L Jackson and Snoop Dog are two of the snails in the snail racing gang around the restaurant. Then we also have Michelle Rodriguez who plays one of the store owners. All of these people together create a cast that really is quite good. They don't really save the movie, but they do the best with what they are given.

Overall, I would say if you are a parent with small children that have been looking forward to this movie, my recommendation is that you should take them because young kids don't require a whole ton in a movie. This is a movie that is made for kids and kids will love it. However, this grumpy adult that does ask of a lot in a movie wasn't super impressed with it. I usually like animated movies, but I like an animated movie that is good entertainment for both kids and adults. Dreamworks is usually good at accomplishing this just like in The Croods, but this time they missed the mark. I'll recommend this to your kids, but if you don't have kids, then I would recommend you skip this one and go see The Croods or Despicable Me 2 instead. I give Turbo a 6 out of 10.

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