Saturday, July 9, 2011

Give Us Your Worst, Part 6: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III was something of a wild card: it's been so long since we last saw it, we'd no idea what to expect. Our memories were hazy enough that, despite our negative associations, we actually allowed ourselves the luxury of hoping this would offer, at the very least, a fun experience.

But we have learned better. In this world there is no hope, no joy. Because this is the world that produced Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III.

While the second movie is certainly flawed, we found the experience of watching Secret of the Ooze an overall pleasant and nostalgic one. This is its predecessor's dark reflection: an empty, soulless look back at everything not worth remembering about the years we grew up in.

Every joke - almost every line - dates the picture, with references to everything from Wayne's World to Bill and Ted. This isn't a trip back to feudal Japan: it's a trip back to 1993. And it isn't a pleasant one.

The puppets and suits had been mixed in the first two movies; this time they're consistently awful. Even worse, Kevin Clash, the puppeteer who may have salvaged the second film single-handed, has been replaced with a pale imitation.

There was nothing intriguing, fun, or salvageable in Turtles III. Nothing. This was a tedious, boring production, not even a worthy sequel to part 2, let alone the original or the comic origins.

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