Scooby-Doo Movie Review
Who would have thought that a movie starring Matthew Lillard and Freddie Prinze, Jr. would make $54 million in its opening weekend? Hell must have frozen over, and pigs are flying, because I never would have foreseen it in a million years. Nevertheless, Scooby Doo did surpass the half-century mark in three days - does it deserve it?
The problem with reviewing children's movies is that often times the reviewer is not a child. How can one really rate a child's movie from an adult's perspective? Sure, there are those really good cross-generation films like Toy Story and E.T., but for the most part, adults are not good at determining what children will enjoy. An adult can deem what can be considered a good kid's movie, but cannot say what children will like (if kids listened to older people, Pokemon would have flopped). However, all of that aside, Scooby Doo is a product that the adults reviewing movies today watched when they were younger, so this live-action version should at least try to appeal to a broad audience.
Unfortunately, it fails.
This new, live-action Scooby Doo is about the gang heading to Spooky Island to investigate some ghosts and other stuff. They argue, they get chased by all kinds of ghouls and cults and so forth, and when all is said and done, they save the day. It's your pretty typical children's story, except that Scooby-Doo takes it one step farther; it acts like it is a cartoon. The characters bounce around like cartoon characters, and, of course, our loveable dog is computer-generated. This is all fun and games, except for the adults that have to watch it; live-action cartoon movies are not necessarily one's idea of a good time.
That said, Scooby-Doo does have its moments. There's nothing overly notable about any specific scene, but I laughed a few times here and there and was able to watch the entire film without being too bored - just a little annoyed.
The thing that really bothered me, I think, is the computer graphics. If you're basing a movie on a cartoon show, and you decide to computer generate things, make them look realistic. I am not talking about making Scooby-Doo look like a real dog, or making those monsters look more realistic; Scooby-Doo just has a real artificial manner about everything, and it takes away from the fun of the film. I understand that things were supposed to look a little off, but the poor computer effects just stand out way too much. Oh, and since they didn't use a real dog for Scooby-Doo (which is understandable), why not just have him be his normal cartoon self?
Scooby-Doo is funny at times, but it is a little too cheesy for the rest. The cast does well enough with the simple script, but I wish that there had been more adult jokes or spoofs spread throughout. Scooby-Doo ignores its past fans and is looking for a new generation to entertain, and it should do a good job of it, but raising one's tail to loyal fans is not the smartest thing. And then there are people like me, who were indifferent to the franchise known as Scooby-Doo, who just didn't find anything very special about this film in any way or form.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.