TMNT Out of the Shadows Review: Cowabunga?
TMNT Out of the Shadows Review: I was surprised to hear that the first film had earned the franchise a sequel, but was less inclined to argue once they cast Stephen Amell as Casey Jones. I have to admit, he was one of the only reasons I was even willing to give this film a shot, but was it worth it?
The Turtles are back and struggling with their isolation, yearning to be a part of the world above when Shredder escapes from custody. The Turtles must jump back into action, this time joined by Casey Jones, the prison guard who witnessed his escape and is willing to do anything to bring him to justice. Sound familiar? In an attempt to redeem himself, Casey Jones is out tracking down Bebop and Rocksteady when he encounters the Foot Clan and April. Casey helps her to fight them off and finally meets the Turtles in person.
While there were many issues with the film, a few things that were good were the musical choices. I really enjoyed quite a few of the songs that were put in to the film. Tyler Perry was the best performance by far as Baxter Stockman. There were a few scenes that were visually appealing that helped to elevate this film above its predecessor. There is a scene where the Turtles are going down a waterfall, whilst fighting for possession of something. It was really well done and had great detail. Equally as stunning was the scene where the Turtles are fighting Bebop and Rocksteady on an airplane and the airplane begins to descend and fall to pieces. It is also a really engaging scene that has you on the edge of your seat. I also really appreciate the direction that the film took by not forcing a relationship between April and Casey. I was really worried that it was going to go that route, but luckily it did not.
With the good we have quite a few complaints that really center around the characters. Casey Jones (Stephen Amell) was my favorite performance apart from Tyler Perry. He was the comic relief in a lot of scenes and did a good job grounding the rest of the characters. My opinion on Megan Fox as April has not changed since the first film. I don’t think she fits this role and I think she is just being cast for her looks versus her ability to act and/ or her likeness to the character.
Another character issue that I found to be incredibly irritating was the characters of Rocksteady (Stephen Farrelly) and Bebop (Gary Anthony Williams) . They over-accentuated the characters’ stupidity and made them even more vulgar and disgusting. There’s a scene where after they’ve transformed, they look in their pants and say “my man” and high five. Seriously? Follow that up with some farting scene that is just there to be stupid. These characters overall left a bad taste in my mouth. This is the first time that we see Krang and while the stomach/ brain doesn’t disappoint and has the same menacing feeling that the cartoon had, the body/ suit that he is in doesn’t look anything like the cartoon and looks more like it belongs in a Transformers movie, than in the Turtles.
The Turtles are pretty much the same as they were in the previous film, both visually and as characters. I would hope in the next installment there is a little bit of emotional growth and maturing on the part of the Turtles.
Overall, TMNT Out of the Shadows is definitely an improvement over its predecessor and I would be more than willing to see where the story goes in the next installment.