The Good and Bad of the Upcoming "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" Movie

Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures
March 19th, 2014

Many young adults grew up with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Whether poring over the pages of the comic books, enjoying the cartoons or watching the Turtles on the big screen, many people have grown to love this franchise in one way or another. When the most recent film adaptation of this unique story comes to theaters in 2014, it will introduce a whole new generation to Raphael, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Leonardo. Audiences can expect this movie to deliver some awesome things and some not-so-awesome things.

The Awesome

1. The name will not be shortened. The name was originally slated to have been simply "Ninja Turtles," but after widespread fan outcry that this marked the distancing of the franchise from its roots, the name was reverted to its longer form.

2. The Ninja Turtles will be brought to life using performance capture technology and digital animation. In past live-action "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" films, the Ninja Turtles themselves were all running around in stiff-looking and unrealistic suits. In 2014's "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," the actors playing the turtles were filmed in motion capture suits, and the turtle-like features were added in digitally. This makes for more realistic and less comical-looking main characters.

3. The edgier-looking turtles hearken back to the original comics. The goofy-looking turtles that many people know and love were born from the cartoons of the 1980s. In the original comics, the turtles were more real looking, with scars and other imperfections. This film will stay true to that original look.

4. A versatile cast makes the character interactions more authentic. The cast includes fan-favorite actors like Megan Fox, comedians like Will Arnett and classically popular actors like Whoopi Goldberg. This unique blend of personalities and acting styles adds spice and diversity to the film without distracting from the characters and the central plot.

5. Adding a more serious note to the plot makes the film fresh. In the past, "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" movies have relied heavily on action and comedy beats to carry the plot forward. While the new film does have action and comedic moments, it also weaves a story of friendship and camaraderie to strike the right notes with audiences everywhere.

The Not-So-Awesome

1. The director is flip-flopping on the origin story. Michael Bay, the director of the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" movie, stated in 2012 that the Ninja Turtles would have alien origins, which is the reason that he had originally dropped "mutant" from the title. However, he has more recently stated that he is keeping the original ooze-based mutant origin story. Many fans believe, with good reason, that the movie has been heavily altered during the development process.

2. The film may be deviating too much from the original franchise. Though different adaptations of "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" throughout the years have changed a few things, the Ninja Turtles have specific origins and characterizations that hardcore fans expect to see followed; if they are not, these older fans may be disappointed.

3. Very little hard information is known about the film, although its release date is rapidly approaching. While it is heavy on action, the trailer does not say very much about the characters and their roles in the plot. This makes it hard for people to decide where they stand and whether or not they want to see the movie at all. It could be utterly disappointing, or it could surprise everyone.

4. Lots of questionable information has been leaked about this movie, including a draft script that may or may not have been legitimate and that has caused tremendous fan uproar. Lots of highly anticipated films have information leaked before their release, but "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" seems to be especially targeted, resulting in even more confusion over the seeming lack of official information from the film's creators. Fans may have the movie ruined for them before they even get a chance to see it.

5. Many people are not fans of Michael Bay's directing style. Though he consistently brings in big box office numbers, some hardcore "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" fans feel that his high-action style is not compatible with the Ninja Turtles and their story. They worry that he might allow the action sequences to overshadow the rest of the film.

Though this film has had its fair share of critics, even before its release, "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" will certainly be an interesting and memorable experience. Instead of focusing on the negative prospects of the film, fans should see it for themselves to determine if the awesome aspects outweigh the not-so-awesome ones.

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