Starring: Tom Kenny, Antonio Banderas, Bill Fagerbakke, Rodger Bumpass, Mr. Lawrence, Jill Talley
Directed By: Paul Tibbitt
Written By: Glenn Berger, Jonathan Aibel
Rating: PG (US) Running Time: 1 hr 33 min
Before this movie came along, I knew very little about the SpongeBob phenomena. I had heard the theme song somewhere, and I did know what the little guy looked like. I also think I saw part of an episode playing on a TV in a doctor’s waiting room once. But apart from that, this movie and its characters were a mystery, and now that I’ve seen the film, all I can say is – I knew all those ‘experiments’ I did in college would come back to haunt me!
Here’s what I remember about this bizarre little film, in no particular order. There may be some spoilers here.
Bubbles, crabby patties, and was Patrick a starfish? Armageddon, Plankton, Plank-Ton, secret formulas, food fights, and a talking Dolphin. Saturn and Jupiter collide, time machine photo booth, the dolphin had lasers, Antonio Banderas was lovin’ life as Burger Beard, funny seagulls, and a pigeon driving a small taxi. Summoning ice cream is a superpower, more bubbles, a talking squirrel and a clarinet playing squid. A snail called Gary, and I think the character selling the crabby patties was a crab? Which makes me nervous about his ‘secret formula.’ Especially since the people of Bikini Bottom (the town in the sea where everyone lives) literally seem to suffer withdrawal when the patties were gone!
The truth is, this film is pretty much critic proof. Because if you’re old enough to write about it, you’re too old to enjoy it. And any complaints you have will likely get you accused of being a grumpy ‘poopy-head’, or something like that. This is strictly for very young fans of the show, and there isn’t much here to entertain parents.
If your kids are fans of the TV show, then I have to believe they’ll love this movie. Animation wise it gives fans what they’ve seen before, and then ups the ante with some nicely rendered CGI and 3D.
Despite the 3D and CGI, this film would be just as much fun for the kids at home on the family TV. It seems unfair to me to expect parents to fork out for a trip to the theater. Especially since there’s very little in the movie for them to enjoy. Factor in the cost of the tickets, drinks and snacks, plus the cost of the movie when it becomes available to buy, and the prize of this one film gets a bit unreasonable in my opinion.
My favorite characters were the seagulls! I laughed out loud when one of them lost his feathers, and then gets in a small taxi driven by a pigeon, and says rather melodramatically, ‘just go.’