Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows (Review)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows is second film in the TMNT reboot series, a series that's been off to a mixed start. The first film had an over-glorification of April O'Neil (played by Megan Fox, a very odd casting choice but not awful), a ridiculously overpowered Shredder, a plot borrowed from The Amazing Spider-Man, and our title characters barely in their own film (just like the Godzilla reboot!). Not mention Michael Bay is attached to this series. Wippie. With all of that resulting in a film that was mediocre but with a very large box office return, the sequel only seemed to be a little bit in trouble. So how did sequel do? The pitchfork and torch club might come after me after I say but, oh well: I enjoyed Out Of The Shadows. A lot. A lot more than I probably should've. Out Of The Shadows is easily the second best turtles film. It's miles upon miles better than first film, with a good plot, an increased role from the turtles, a decreased role from April and Vernon, plenty of classic Turtles references, and overall a load fun, although it does suffer from some of the same problems as the first film.
Unlike the first film, The Turtles are the main characters of this movie. We finally get a whole movie of them in action, unlike the first film where their barely there. Like last time, the turtles voice cast was stellar. The actors once nail their respective roles. April and Vernon's roles have dramatically reduced, and they are what they should be: supporting characters. Megan Fox, while still not the best choice, did a good job, as well Will Arnett as Vernon, who was once again hilarious. Stephen Armell did a great job as Casey Jones, even if this version a character is a bit different from the one in the comics and TV series. Brain Tee did a great job as The Shredder, who this time wasn't ridiculously overpowered like he was in the first film. Sheamus and Gary Anthony Williams STOLE THE SHOW as Bebop and Rocksteady. Those two nailed their roles. They were absolutely hilarious. Tyler Perry was also good as Baxter Stockman. The Shellraiser (or the Battleshell, it's never exactly stated what the Turtle's van is called here) was incredible. I loved every second of the chase scene. The Technodrome looked absolutely amazing, and final battle scene between the Turtles and the Kraang was amazing. Loved every second of that as well. I also loved the film's plot, and how it deals with the Turtles struggle to deal with who they are and how it affects them as a team. But aside from the seriousness, oh boy this film fun. It's jokes land and every battle scene always got me super excited. The classic Turtle references were also great as well.
Despite being a vast improvement over the first film, Out Of The Shadows still suffers from some of the same problems. Such as there still being many plot holes. Karai was beaten so ridiculously easy, when she's known to put up more than fight. The Shredder never did any direct fighting, which to me was disappointing, because seeing a more evenly matched Turtles and Shredder fight would've been great. Also when Chief Vincent says that they don't have to hide anymore since the saved the city, that was facepalm. It still doesn't matter if they saved city, the public's still not going to accept them.
Out Of The Shadows stomps the first film in almost every single possible way. It's a load fun and action packed compete with a more developed story, better direction, stellar voice work, great work from the cast, reduced roles from April and Vernon, and overall this film doesn't really feel like a Michael Bay film this time around aside from the explosions (neither of the films in this series were directed by Bay but the first one still felt like one). There's plenty here that Turtles fans and audiences will love here.