Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

Directed Jonathan Liebesman

This movie is a part of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise that has been going for decades. Usually it is in a animated/computer animation version. In this version its a mix of CGI and live action.

There is a secret lab led by a mysterious evil martial artist bent on world domination, known as… THE SHREDDER. Five of the experiments escape, a rat and four turtles, known as Master Splinter, Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, and Michelangelo. Several years later when Shredder’s plans are being carried out by his clan of ninjas, the turtles rise to the occasion joined by a reporter named April and her camera man.

Although I was rather pleased with it’s outcome, there were quite a few things I disagreed with in this movie. To begin with, this movie centralized around the idea of a typical ‘Hero and his lover’ archetype, when I felt that it should have emphasized the idea of a team more. The main turtle, Raphael, was perfectly sculpted into this older brother who had faults but mainly prevailed and kept all his brothers in line. As beautiful as this character was developed, it left hardly any room for the other turtles’ character, personality, or general involvement in the situation, leading to them becoming either the comic relief or supporting cast, and falling into the typical cliche cardboard cut-out that is the heroes’ siblings. I felt that Leonardo actually had some realism to his actions and perception on the events, but he rarely got enough screen time for these important revelations, and Michelangelo and Donatello near never got a serious line. On top of all this, the entire story revolved around April so much that I hardly even got to understand who the turtles were, and from what I did learn they had a rather unrealistic childhood. Master Splinter learned Martial arts from a book he found in the sewers and knew how to support an entire family from merely being taken care of by a child. But I should probably not complain considering these are 6 foot turtles who fight a scientific ninja clan from ancient Japan. On a positive note, I believe that they expressed the female characters powerfully and strongly, that as cliche as the plot was it was well planned out, although comic relief was incredibly cheesy it had the perfect timing for humor, and it also had some great action. Overall, it was an enjoyable piece of entertainment and I would recommend it to anyone else who has kids and likes exciting adventure movies.

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