Archives

The Banana Splits Movie

Published Post author

Poster for the movie ""

The Banana Splits Movie

Tra la la terror!

20191 h 30 min
Overview

A boy named Harley and his family attend a taping of The Banana Splits TV show, which is supposed to be a fun-filled birthday for young Harley and business as usual for Rebecca, the producer of the series. But things take an unexpected turn - and the body count quickly rises. Can Harley, his mom and their new pals safely escape?

Metadata
Runtime 1 h 30 min
Release Date 26 August 2019
Details
Movie Media DVD
Movie Status Available
Movie Rating Bad

I have seen a lot of horror movies over the years with many different premises. It is very rare to get a brand-new idea for any movie, let alone a horror film. Yet The Banana Splits Movie did just that by adapting a children’s show from the 1960s into a horror-comedy. Conceptually, it is such a strange idea. Not Sharknado strange or WTF-did-I-just-watch strange, but just strange. How many people today still remember the original Banana Splits show? It has been almost 50 years since it went off the air. But that is part of why this movie works too. It is not like anyone else is doing anything with this franchise.

The Splits themselves are dated enough that modern viewers may not even realize this was once a real children’s show. I myself would not have realized that if a few reviews I read had not mentioned as much. So, in this version, the titular Banana Splits are animatronics instead of people in costumes. I know what you are thinking, we are all thinking it: Five Nights at Freddy’s. Maybe there is a connection there, maybe not. No one who worked on this film has confirmed or denied that.

There were two areas where this movie suffered. Unfortunately, they were big ones. The first was the lack of humor. Despite being labeled a horror-comedy, there was not much comedy here. Aside from the concept of children’s show characters going on a murder spree, there is no real attempt at humor. It felt like they were trying to pull off a low-key style of humor but just fumbled the ball. The other thing was the acting. Considering the horrific life-or-death situation, the characters did not seem very afraid outside of their death sequences. The actors seemed to really try when they were about to be knocked off, but there was no general sense of fear.

Ultimately, The Banana Splits movie was just another mediocre horror film. If you, like me, enjoy mediocre horror films, then this is for you. But it is not a film likely to appeal to a wider audience. When you boil it down, this is a low-budget slasher. The bad guys are just robots instead of people. Maybe it is different for people who watched the original Banana Splits show, but considering it is a 50-year old program there are probably not many people still around who fit into that category.

September 29, 2019

Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Published Post author

Poster for the movie "Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"

Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

20191 h 24 min
Overview

Batman, Batgirl and Robin forge an alliance with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to fight against the Turtles' sworn enemy, The Shredder, who has apparently teamed up with Ra's Al Ghul and The League of Assassins.

Metadata
Director Jake Castorena
Runtime 1 h 24 min
Release Date 31 March 2019
Details
Movie Media DVD
Movie Status Available
Movie Rating Good

As a kid, I remember imagining crossovers between heroes from my favorite cartoons. While I am not sure Batman and Ninja Turtles are ones I ever mixed together, I am happy to see the combination as an adult. For starters, this film really mixed the two series together well. It had the dark broodiness of Gotham and Batman while at the same time maintaining the more light-hearted and comedic tone of the Turtles. Some scenes are Batman being classic, serious Batman. Others are the Turtles goofing off, like when they openly question why Gotham and New York are so similar.

For the villains, we have Shredder mixed with Ras Al Ghul. The Foot Clan allied with the League of Assassins. Ras was his usual self, but in this film, Shredder was more impressive. Thankfully, this is a serious Shredder along the lines of the 2012 Turtles show instead of his goofy 80’s counterpart. This is a Shredder who can take all four Turtles in a fight. And face off against Batman to a standstill. As fun as goofy 80’s Shredder was for his time, the character comes off better as a true villain. Especially in a more serious setting like Gotham.

Plot-wise, this movie is very simple. Apparently, this is based on a comic where a lot more happens. But for an 84-minute animated film, it does a good job. It is a classic tale of heroes stopping the baddies, which is really all you need here. This could have just as easily been a multi-part crossover episode between two different TV shows. And given that the target audience is children, it works. For a crossover like this, the focus is more the characters than anything else. There is never really any doubt that the heroes will save the day here. What we really want to see are the Batman family and Turtles onscreen together.

On the whole, this movie is just fun. If you like Batman and the Turtles (or even just one), it is worth it. If you like Batman and want to hear Troy Baker say the word “cowabunga”, it is extra worth it. For being a fun crossover and not a DC exclusive film, the animation was great too. It had a classic feel but still had a touch of modern animation techniques as well. While it is not a masterpiece of cinematography, there is nothing really “wrong” with this film. It is just a fun childhood dream come true.

May 26, 2019