Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Is An Absolute Blast! (Movie Review)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Out of the ShadowsEver since it was announced way back when that the beautiful, thumb challenged, mother of three Megan Fox would star as April O’Neil in an all-new live action adventure/reincarnation feature film of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles I knew things were completely on the right path.  Cowabunga!  I was so right!  While the 2014 outing was rather silly and probably inconsequential to the survival of the TMNT brand as a whole (the Nickelodeon cartoon carries it alone), the end result was helluva lot of fun to be had (see my movie review here).  So it’s with great joy, giddiness and absolutely no exacerbation that I unbiasedly (as much as possible considering Megan Fox is in this one) tackle the green subject matter contained within this review, the sequel to the 2014 Paramount hit, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, with the utmost of care, caution and precious handling.  After all, these are cute, little green turtles.  But who we kidding?  These turtles love to kick arse!  Gotta love ’em!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows gets a new director this time around, Dave Green (Earth to Echo).  The story is written by Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec and stars the luscious Megan Fox.  Haha.  Okay!  There are more stars too like Stephen Amell, Will Arnett, Brian Tee, Tyler Perry Brittany Ishibashi, Laura Linney and William Fichtner.  Last but not least, and I’m sure I’m not alone in this way of thinking, but many peeps are probably excited to see how they successfully or unsuccessfully the filmmakers are in bringing to life on the big screen TMNT favorites such as Casey Jones, Bepop, Rocksteady and the “mastermind” himself, Krang!  I was particularly excited to see how the latter turned out, but I digress.  Read on you will!

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In this second installment (I believe three movies are planned in this franchise), the four turtle brothers come into conflict with T.C.R.I. scientist Dr. Baxter Stockman (Tyler Perry) and the return of their arch nemesis, simply known as the Shredder (Tee) to y’all.   After being defeated in the first film, the Shredder is back and forms a partnership in hopes of taking down the turtles and their master, Splinter.  He has hired Dr. Stockman to create mutants of his own in the form.  This is the segue of course to how the cartoon’s beloved villain characters of Bebop and Rocksteady (voiced by Gary Anthony Williams and WWE wrestler Sheamus) come to be.   However, theres much more happening here.  There always is in these sequels it seems where the filmmakers, no mater what franchise it is, think it’s A-okay to cram as many villains in as “humanly” possible.

So when I made reference to there’s a heck of a lot more happening in this film than just Bebop and Rocksteady I’m also talking about our turtles also discovering a “ooze” in hopes they can become humans (how else is Mikey really going to land April?) and an extraterrestrial invasion above New York City (sound familiar to any kind of Marvel film?) led by the Dimension X inhabitant known as Krang.  Hell yeah!  Krang is in this one baby!  He deserves his own film, but just in case that never happens, he’s in here!  So shut up and enjoy the fact that a talking brain is actually a reality in a film nowadays.  So as you might have already guessed, upon Krang’s invasion of New York City, the turtles must work together and join forces with not only their trusty and wise master, Splinter, but also their human allies too… April O’Neil (Fox), Vern Fenwick (Arnett) and the hockey masked vigilante (not Jason) Casey Jones (Amell).

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Now here’s the deal folks, and I just can’t hide it anymore, I had an absolute blast with this one!  Even I can’t believe my score I have awarded this one down below, but it’s for real people.  This second outing with our favorite green reptiles had me in stitches, ladies and gentlemen, not to mention having me rekindling with and reliving my childhood with all the classic TMNT characters and villains brilliantly brought to life on the big screen.  And here’s something that you also won’t hear me saying much, the 3-D presentation was outstanding.  I’m gushing as I think about what to write about next.  There’s so much good in this one that it’s almost difficult to write about without coming across totally screwed and/or biased.

So you remember people a few weeks back exclaiming that Neighbors 2 was a worthy sequel?  Bah!  Humbug.  Whatevs!  I exclaim with the utmost of joy that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows is finally a worthy sequel!  It has it all, high-octane action, gut busting comedy and a sizzling hot Megan Fox, not to mention the mutha effer himself, KRANG!  That’s right folks!  The diabolical “brain” of Krang is back on the big screen to wreak havoc for our green friends, not to mention the inhabitants of our beloved Mother Earth.  But don’t worry folks!  Our turtles and their human friends, including one that looks like Friday the 13th‘s Jason, will save the day, right?  Err…you better believe it!  However, it’s one hell of a fight as the turtles must not only win over the villains, but also the people and police of New York City who vehemently kind of see them as monsters, and who can blame them, eh?

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Where do I begin?  Hmm…let’s talk about the film’s DNA first.  I’ll admit it, I felt like I was watching 2007’s The Transformers for the first time, yes that’s right, the only good one they made.  While I’ll agree that movie suffered from bad dialog like this one does at times, it’s the unmistakable visual look of a Michael Bay production that’s prevalent (sometimes with even the same shots) and a score that sounds suspiciously familiar.  Oh what do you know?  They’re both by the same composer, Steve Jablonsky!  Whatever, it works.  And that’s what I am saying.  The DNA is similar although the feature is completely different, sort of.  Heck!  There’s even a blatant nod to The Transformers in this one, but I’ll leave that for you to experience.

Now let’s move onto the movie’s fun factor.  Cowabunga!  This one amplifies the first installment in not only terms of action, but also in comedy too.  Every minute, and sometimes more often, I found myself cracking up and if a movie could do that to me after sitting in an hour and half of traffic to get to it, then it deserves more recognition than chicken noodle soup.  The four turtle characters are definitely coming out of their shells in this one as we witness firsthand how they have grown and matured in ways since this first film.  This isn’t a cheesy carton sequel, but rather one that should be taken seriously as it’s wildly entertaining and if this doesn’t put a smile on parents and kids alike, then I don’t know what will.  Hostess Twinkies anyone?

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Last but not least, let’s talk about the humans.  Like the maturity the turtles are showing as they’re coming to age, the characters of April and Vern are blossoming in their own right.  Sure Fox is utilized much more in this outing and she looks better than ever (I don’t think she’s pregnant this time around when this was shot and her thumbs looked good too), but Arnett’s character of Vern takes a hilarious 360-turn from where we saw him in the first installment in 2014.  I did not forget the infamous character of Casey Jones either because it’s the homage to the turtles brand and legacy that makes Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows work, not to mention how unapologetically silly and entertaining this second outing is.  Rest assured folks, there’s much more to talk about, but I’d rather you get out and see this one than wasting your time clinging to every written word here.  Take some time to unwind.  Have fun!  This one leaves you wanting a third play date with these heroes in a half-shell and I’m pretty confident the folks at paramount and Nickelodeon will get just that.  Turtle power!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Out of the Shadows Poster


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

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