Comedy, action, nostalgia, perfection. Batman and the The Ninja Turtles raise serious shell – Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Review
This movie should have gotten a theatrical release. Seriously, Fathom where is my special screening? Something! Come on! If you can’t tell, I really liked the movie. Warner Bros./DC and Nickelodeon took two IP’s I grew up with and combined them in a film that is somehow greater than the sum of its parts with Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Quick synopsis of the movie, the Turtles track Shredder and the Foot to Gotham and aim to stop whatever nefarious scheme he has. Being Gotham, Batman is aware of Shredder and encounters him in one of the best-choreographed fights in animated history. In this encounter, Shredder does edge ahead with the use of his most powerful technique. Soon after, Batman and the turtles cross paths. Batman kind of single-handedly takes down the turtles… However, the Turtles were able to infiltrate the Batcave and forced to subdue Damian. Batman returns, there’s a standoff, everyone realizes they’re on the same team, and Alfred makes some snide remarks. Batgirl is also around the whole time as the level head and actually knows the bigger picture of everything. Eventually they all team up, and take on Shredder and an enjoyable amount of Batman’s villains.
Storywise, it follows the beats of any team-up story. Heroes working towards the same goal who end up clashing because they don’t realize they’re on the same side. Heroes realize they’re on the same side, decide to team up. Team up does well, but there’s more to the bad guys’ plot than they expected. Heroes get much closer from their struggle and defeat villains thanks to their incredible bond. If you break it down to its beats, it’s nothing new. But in its execution, Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is magnificent. The contrast of the turtles’ “youth” to Batman’s stoic and extreme straight man act is comedic gold. This is especially apparent when comparing Mikey’s easily excitable nature to Batman’s never phased demeanor. We also have complimenting characters, such as Donnie and Batgirl and Robin and Raph, which work extremely well together. Then there are the villains. Shredder and Ra’s al Ghul are very similar, and being villains, these two do not get along. However, they are good at working towards their goals which is why they pose such an imposing threat. The relationships really make the movie, and what makes this tried format stand out and feel unique. Marly Halpern-Graser did an incredible job incorporating numerous characters, being absolutely faithful to each of them, and making a logical and cohesive story that leaves you thoroughly fulfilled and yearning for more.
The story shines, and it is in large part due to the amazing direction and performances. Jake Castorena is quickly becoming one of my favorite directors, having helmed Death of Superman previously, this guy knows how to bring these stories and characters to life. Troy Baker is no Kevin Conroy and no Mark Hamill, but damn it if he’s not a worthy successor. Baker absolutely nails both parts in this monumental occasion of playing both roles in the same project. Eric Bauza does a great job of playing the young leader, Leonardo, seamlessly going from teenager to wise leader on a dime. Andrew Kishino is a menacing shredder. Cas Anvar’s regalness absolutely emanates from Ra’s al Ghul. Ben Giroux, honestly freaks me out a bit. I mean this in the best way possible because he really sounds like a 13-year-old kid. He is not 13. Every part was superbly performed, and I could keep going, but I just want to highlight those we interviewed at WonderCon. However, I have to really tip my hat to Kyle Mooney, who did a thoroughly incredible job as Michaelangelo. You thoroughly feel the fun and joy of Mikey/Mooney in every line. Cipes has competition as my favorite Mikey.
Normally, this is where I would drop my critique of the film, but I don’t really have any. The story format is cookie cutter, but the cookie is pure perfection. I would break my keto diet for this cookie. The story makes perfect sense and gloriously combines both properties seamlessly. Nothing feels out of placed, or forced to make it work. The movie makes me feel like a kid watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Batman the Animated Series on a Saturday morning, then transition into playing with the toys.
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But not only does it really tickle the nostalgia gland, but it is also an animated masterpiece. The style perfectly toes the line of cartoon and comic book, really servicing fans of the properties in any medium. Where it truly shines though, is the fight scenes. The fight scenes are incredibly epic. Despite being apparently animated, the fights feel very real. Everything feels possible despite how fictional it all is. It is magnificent in every sense of the word.
Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a perfect movie for fans of the franchises and lovers of martial arts action films. The movie is fun, hilarious, and guaranteed to be one of the most enjoyable 84 minutes of your life. Great story, phenomenal performances, and nerd love radiating every single frame. Reading this is only delaying you from pure, unfiltered, enjoyment. My Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles review gets a 5/5.
Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is out now on digital and Blu-Ray release is set for June 4th.
Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a perfect movie for fans of the franchises and lovers of martial arts action films. The movie is fun, hilarious, and guaranteed to be one of the most enjoyable 84 minutes of your life. Great story, phenomenal performances, and nerd love radiating every single frame. Reading this is only delaying you from pure, unfiltered, enjoyment.