Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were first introduced in a 1984 comic book. The animated reptiles were quickly popularized with cartoon series, movies and a gang of official TMNT merchandise.

But like most childhood fictional tv characters-the Power Rangers, Duck Tales and Teletubbies- the essence of their being slowly faded away. A mixture of corniness and maturity added to their non-existence but it is moments like this where 80s babies can recapture those faded memories.

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Megan Fox, Will Arnett, and Johnny Knoxville star in the fifth TMNT movie adaption. Nickoldeon’s version of Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo, and Raphael were back in action as vigilantes fighting a New York City gang, the Foot Clan.

The motion capture technology, which was also used in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, provided precision and definition to the TMNT. Prepare to see the shelled superheroes like you’ve never seen them before.

It took too long to get the first glimpse of our humanly, pizza-loving turtle friends. The movie initially involved too much Megan Fox fluff and evil pretenses. In my mind, I’m thinking: “Bring on the crew!”

I was more excited to see Whooping Goldberg, who played an unflattering news director, than Megan Fox. Despite Fox’s sex appeal and cinema popularity, she is actually melodramatic as April O’Neil.

Megan Fox

The sweetest redemption is enjoying the movies with your children, whether they’re yours or not. Children are able to capture the same memories of their parents. Even in its evolution, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles remains a timeless classic for all to enjoy.

2.5 Stars
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The movie just was not as great as I thought it would be. Megan Fox was not convincing and we should have had more Cowabunga time with our childhood buddies. Overall, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was hilarious, especially Michelangelo.

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The Lego Movie

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Will Ferrell, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, and Morgan Freeman lend their voice talents for Warner Brothers Pictures’ newest animated flick, “The Lego Movie”. Emmet Brickowski (voice by Pratt) is an ordinary Lego land citizen who finds out he is destined to be the ultimate Master Builder. Emmett, with the help of his new female friend, Wyldstyle (voice by Banks), has to save his universe from an evil dictator, Lord Business (voice by Ferrell).

The trickiest part of “The Lego Movie” is identifying some of the other familiar voices like Will Arnett, Shaquille O’Neal, Billy Dee Williams, Liam Neeson, Channing Tatum, and Jonah Hill.

“The Lego Movie” is a family friendly movie that taps into the inner childhood of everyone. Even the adults who did not play with Legos as children, like me, are reminded of the playful sprit of every adolescent.

The movie is also evenly balanced for families with both boys and girls. Disney’s “Frozen” is more geared towards little girls, and while most viewers would assume “The Lego Movie” is tailored to young boys, it has the excitement and engagement for the entire family. Similar to the “Shrek” series, the movie has adult like humor and even jokes that only adults would be able to comprehend.

The cinematography is top notch! Visually the movie sucks you right into an actual Lego world. Cinematographer Pablo Plaisted, who also worked on the visual effects of the “Happy Feet” series, manages to show the complexity of making water and food, still his work comes off as simplistic and effortless in the film. The use of 3D effects are very detailed and attention grabbing.

I never imagined Morgan Freeman and Will Ferrell would be such an awesome comedy duo. But it worked so well! Both actors were outrageously hilarious yet clean and appropriate for the younger audience. Will Ferrell, who voiced one of the main characters, also makes an actual cameo in the movie. The creative twist brings the movie all together.

With almost 80 movies under his belt, Morgan Freeman has surpassed all seasoned acting veterans. Freeman is currently 3 filming three movies (“Life Itself”, “Dolphin Tale 2”, “Lucy”). It’s safe to say that any acting role he commits to from now on will only strength his already established legacy. His father-like, soothing voice has become the coined narration of several documentaries, movies and used for many commercial advertisements.

Members of the Steel City LUG ( Lego User Group) and other Lego lovers gathered in the Waterfront on Saturday, February 1, 2014 for the Pittsburgh premiere. Iva Freeman, 35, was one of the Pittsburgh parents who brought her family to get a first glimpse of the movie. “The movie was great family fun and although it starts off with funny children things, the movie ends with a lesson for all ages.” The movie’s lesson is that “everyone is different in their own way and that’s what makes them special.”

3.5 Lego Stars

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The Nut Job

“I wanna lick your face!” – Precious the Pug (voice by Maya Rudolph)

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Open Road Films took its first stab at animated films with a story about an exiled squirrel with hopes of finding food for the winter in “The Nut Job.” Surly (voice by Will Arnett) and his trusty rat friend, Buddy (voice by Robert Tinkler) have to make a shaky deal with other park friends to steal nuts for the winter. The park animal alliance is led by Raccoon (voice by Liam Neeson), Andie ( voice by Katherine Heigl), and park hero, Grayson (voice by Brendan Fraser).

Minnie Riperton’s daughter, Maya Rudolph, is a breath of fresh air. She’s super cute, quirky and funny. And now proving her extreme versatility for she hit a home run as the adorable pet pug, Precious. Rudolph track record has been consistently humorous with movies like Bridesmaids (2011) and The Way, Way Back (2013). After Saturday Night Live’s recent diversity dilemma, I was really sad to see her go, but she is clearly making a name for herself aside from the NBC show.

“The Nut Job” is inferior in comparison to Disney’s Frozen. Walt Disney’s latest classic spent two non-consecutive weeks at the #1 spot in the box office and as of January 13th, the fairy tale racked in an estimated $317 million. While “The Nut Job” had a villain, a good guy, and a twist like “Frozen”, it lacked catchy tunes, glittery princesses, and a family feel.

The movie was average but a great opening mark for a new movie production company like Open Road. Children will enjoy the cuddly talking animals, while parents will take pleasure in the minor adult-like humor. But, what adults will quickly notice are the periodic moments of boredom, where the movie gets a little dry and you catch yourself dozing off. The Nut Job lacked the engaging excitement of “Frozen”.

If you are anything like my family though, you can use “The Nut Job” for what it is worth; an opportunity to get the kids out of the house. A warm movie theater, good company and overpriced food makes for a great Saturday outing.

On Saturday, January 11, 2014, the Movie Scene Queen hosted the Pittsburgh premiere of the Nut Job at AMC Waterfront 22. Hundreds of children and their parents filled the Homestead movie theater for the special screening. “I thought the movie was a nice, funny family movie that taught the kids a great lesson about working together as a team,” says Denisehia Crawford, 25, who attended the Pittsburgh premiere with her two little ones.

3 Little Charming, Animal Stars

The Nut Job Premiere
Nyier and Kyan Crawford attended the Nut Job’s Pittsburgh premiere at AMC Waterfront on Saturday, January 11, 2014.

The Nut Job Passes

This is for the little ones…

The Nut Job

Grab your family and join MSQ and her kiddos for a fun-filled Saturday as we enjoy the newest animated movie, The Nut Job, where a rogue squirrel plans to rob a nut store. The rogue squirrel (Will Arnett) and his rat friend plan a heist of outrageous proportions. The Nut Job is in theaters January 17th.

Please visit GOFOBO.com to redeem your passes, using GOFOBO RSVP Code: PMSQ3K8H

See you tomorrow!

Much Love,

The Movie Scene Queen

The Nut Job Screen shot

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