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Review: Turtles Forever

Turtles Forever

I don’t know about you, but I’m a big TMNT fan. Well, not big enough to make me collect the comics and have Turtle-themed pillowcases to sleep on every night (that honor is reserved solely for Batman), but you get my drift. I did, however, wear TMNT sneakers (it’s green, with the soles pattered after their shells and it’s got a freaking pump!) and I ate that cereal that turned the milk green. Yes, I thought it was a good idea back then.

Anyway, what I really mean to say is I saw the much-awaited made-for-DVD movie, Turtles Forever. And I fucking loved it.

I have to warn you though: I’ll be putting in spoilers at this point.

We’re all clear then? Ok.

Man, what a ride it was. Basically, it’s all about the Turtles from the current TV show meeting their counterparts from the goofier 80’s cartoon.

Turtles, meet turtles

So the plot goes a little something like this: the 80’s Turtles somehow land on the 2003 universe and are quickly captured by a ninja gang. They are rescued by the 2003 Turtles, and as they figure out a way to return home (which involves 80’s Shredder, Krang and the Technodrome), their plans are suddenly thrown awry by the return of the 2003 Shredder.

At this point, I’d like to stress something: even though I love the 2003 cartoon for actually focusing on character development, plot and action, the 80’s cartoon has a special place in my (sex) heart. No matter how goofy or silly it can get, the old show introduced me to the awesomeness that is TMNT.

Which is why I find it dismaying that 90% of the time, the movie does nothing but to lampoon the old show. I know, it’s just being played for laughs and it’s a way to contrast the differences between the old and new Turtles, but I felt like the creators wanted to say “You liked this shit? Look at how stupid this show is! It’s got mutant bananas running around New York, for crying out loud!” Sure they can get giggly and probably won’t survive a fight in the real world, but those are my Turtles. Contrary to their actions in the movie, they won’t go out into the streets to grab a pizza without putting on a disguise. Also, stop being mean to them, 2003 Raphael.

And for the record, mutant bananas are awesome and 80’s April O’ Neal has huge gazongas.

Take that, flat-chested 2003 April

On the other hand, it looks like the movie’s creators had a lot of fun with 80’s Shredder and Krang. I swear, they could’ve eaten up a lot more time in this film and it won’t ever be enough. I find myself laughing my ass off whenever they appear on screen.

I don’t even know what my favorite scene is. There’s the one where 2003 Shredder reveals the Turtle Multiverse and we get to see a glimpse of the different incarnations of the Turtles in TV, movies and comics. I recognized only a few of those versions, but I geekgasmed anyway.

And who could not love the scenes held in Turtle-Prime? We see the Turtles from the very first issue of the comic, all black and white and brooding and rasping Christian Bale-like that even 2003 Raphael thought that they needed to lighten up.

There were lots of great moments too. 80’s Raphael, true to form, often broke the 4th wall and talked to the audience, much to the dismay of everyone else around him. At one point, Hun even asks who the hell is he talking to. Turtle-Prime Leonardo even gets into 4th-world breaking mode and gives out a Frank Miller-esque internal monologue ripped from the first issue of the comic itself. I had to laugh when 2003 Leonardo asked why the hell is he monologuing.

Take that for insulting the 80's Turtles!

As for the final battle? I thought three sets of Turtles weren’t enough. It was great, but I wonder what would’ve happened if those other Turtles in the multiverse were able to join in the battle against Shredder. Now that would be epic. Also, the 80’s Turtles sort of redeemed themselves in the end by being the ones who actually did something against Shredder, while the 2003 Turtles just got their asses handed to them. Bebop and Rocksteady also figure in the climax, which made me laugh so loud and loved this movie to bits.

I may have found a lot of bones to pick with this movie, but I consider Turtles Forever one of the best things I’ve watched this year. I love it so much that I’m actually giving it a score of 5/5 Turtles!


18 responses

  1. There's a TMNT movie? I've been missing on a lot of TMNT stuff lately. From the looks of the screenshots, I think I'll be "drifting back to memory lane" once I get to watch this one.

    Does anyone remember the TMNT game in Famicom?

    1. You're the first, probably ONLY person I know who likes TMNT.. and actually drank the green milk, as well. πŸ™‚

  2. Perhaps I'll look up a torrent of this one. *ehem*

    I never tried to watch the 2003 turtles, it's my way of preserving the awesome memories of growing up watching the 80's turtles.

    What I do have at home is the old live-action TMNT movie in VHS format. lolz, talk about old-school right?

    1. I haven't seen Turtles Forever but will probably do so on the strength of your recommendations. I didn't really like the recent TMNT movies so I'm hopeful this one is as good as you described. I was a really big fan when I was a kid. πŸ˜€

  3. Please please please tell me they showed this weird-ass Japanese iteration of the Ninja Turtles: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGMfb60lc14 πŸ˜€

    You ate the green cereal? I remember wanting to eat the green ooze that came with the old toys, but my yaya kept stopping me. I think I was wearing my Leonardo costume at the time, too.

    Whatever happened to Mondo Gecko? πŸ™

  4. I love how you've gone ninja-serious movie buff on your review with the fourth wall and character development shit going on. πŸ˜€

  5. I didn't know there is a movie created for TMNT fans aside from the live action one (where they are in 3D). Will definitely make a way to watch it. (Torr.. Nevermind. Lol)

    And hey! I'm a TMNT kid myself. Wore the shirts, the shoes, and even ate the cereals too. πŸ™‚

    I remember having problems in pronouncing Shredder when I was a kid. x_x

    1. I have a very old photo wearing a TMNT costume. Yes, just a bandanna and 4 blue cloth on my wrist and knees.

      TMNT is that awesome.

      Also, I can just watch 80's april and 80's Krang & Shredder for hours w/o getting bored.

  6. DiStUrBeDTink Avatar

    I am really surprised that in every review that I have read about this AWSOME entanglement of TMNT Multiverses that not one single person has refrenced the fact that yes they did include both cartoon forms and the comic book form they also used lines from the original movie form the 80s as well. SPOILER: Ie… When the one true Shredder is talking to Hun after he has been mutated and they are planing their attack on the turtles lair it matches the the lines that are exchanged between the Shredder and Tatsu in the original 80s movie before their raid on the turtles lair. So yes they did do an awsome job of crossing every form of TMNT known to the fans over in this AWSOME movie. So ends an era in the TMNT legacy and what a wonderful send off or hand off how ever you want to look at it it was. Hopefully Nick wont screw up this gift that they have been given that are THE TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES

  7. wow. I haven't heard about this movie! hmmm.. I should look for it πŸ˜€

    I am such a huge TMNT fan, especially Leonardo. Ehrm.. more like 'coz he's an "L" and I'm an "L", and I just feel I should be as awesome as him πŸ˜› Gawd, those were the days when I asked that any gift I receive be something that has the TMNT on it. So I got TMNT shirts, TMNT shorts, TMNT bags, TMNT notebooks, etc.


    Anyway, great review..! I'm going to look for this nao.

    1. I wanna watch this! Makes me remember my old leonardo toy with the springs and the inside of the shell containing the weapons, also wore tmnt merchandise! Contrary to most of what you guys felt, i liked the 3d tmnt movie..:D oh, i saw in a coloring book that there's a 5th turtle!! Girl named Venus?!

  8. burningeko Avatar

    Raphael for ever!
    just finished watching this great movie! it was slightly 2003centric, the way the 80's shredder and krang could be in the same room as the turtles and not try and kick their asses every time was a little comedic even for the 80's series. it really had something for every turtles fan. the critic said that he couldn't believe that the turtles went out in the middle of the day for pizza, but it does fit the continuity of the 80's show where they were being praised as heroes for a while even though they were still wanted by the law. in my mind this movie was nearly perfect

    1. Richard Avatar

      Good movie, but could have used some Vernon Fenwick!

  9. I just bought this and watched it a couple of days ago. It was freaken AWESOME. There are several subtle nods to things I can't even remember right now, such as Donnie's famous attack from the SNES game during one of the many battles (which is another reason why this movie kicks so much ass).

    I also totally agree about them dogging the 80s turtles WAY too much. They weren't THAT retarded (well, Mikey was). The guy who did 80s Leo's voice was way off, but the rest of the voice actors were close enough although you can tell Uncle Phil was NOT 80s Shredder either.

    This cartoon/movie was just great. Probably the best thing since Secret of The Ooze.

    Hand me that hammer,


    1. Ghostly Swimmer Avatar
      Ghostly Swimmer

      I undestand the objection on how the 87 Turtles were portrayed. But before anyone judges too quickly I think you should go back and rewatch the series. Yes, the portrayals of the 87 Turtles may have been exaggerated but to be honest it was only slightly exaggerated .

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