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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) Review


by Tendai Sibindi

Michael Bay, the Producer of the reboot of the pizza loving, ass-kicking Turtles once said “he doesn’t care who hates his movies”. He has a point, people love to hate and people will give credit where credit is due. On this production, no credit is deserved. None.

Here is why: The story. This version, one would expect an origins story as this is a reboot. With most reboots, the story is changed to adapt to modern times or to give it a fresh look, that way, a sequel can be made creating or building onto an established franchise. Somehow, the story got lost between hitting on The Amazing Spider Man, Batman Begins and Lord of War in a bar.

TMNT did not know which pick up line to use, so the solution was to drink like Whip (played by Denzel Washington) in Flight, gather the three of them around a table and try to seduce the three of them with a combination of their stories. It was a drunken mess. Megan Fox played the role of April O’Neil, the contender for the greatest fictional reporter of all time. Imagine April O’Neil vs. Lois Lane in a ring, fighting for the World’s Greatest Reporter Title.

In this version of TMNT, April O’Neil would lose to Dora the Explorer. Megan Fox has never been able to act and this was evident in Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen. To see her portray April was a bad move. She was not a reporter, she failed to portray the character of April O’Neil and she was unable to show that she was in danger (Transformers all over again). Just like her inability to show emotions, her make-up did the same, it was consistent throughout. Not only did her face (yes, just her face) see more screen time than any other character, her emotions never changed and her beauty make-up did not go below 12 out of 10. L’Oreal SIGN HER NOW… and give Fox’s Make-up Artist an Oscar.

Megan Fox TMNT-Transformers
Maybe she’s born with it?

The Turtles were impressive. They were teenagers, immature, energetic and rowdy. Not to forget the random fart joke. Thanks Nickelodeon. They kicked ass, they had skills, they moved like ninjas and each Turtle had their own look. Great thinking behind that. Giving them individuality as we are in 2014. But what comes to mind is:

Leonardo – the leader (apparently). He never made a decision that you felt he is a leader of men (or Turtles). The Turtles did not need him to take the lead. April had more stones than he did (yes, April was still played by Megan Fox) which begs to question, was Leo a leader or just a passenger?

Raphael – Bruce Banner’s Hulk drank from the fountain of youth. Overly aggressive, short tempered, wrecking ball that went from showing one emotion to showing one other. A teenage mutant ninja turtle with only two emotions (emphasis on teenage).

Donatello – the brains of the group. He was smart without a shadow of doubt. He wore a broken pair of glasses that were put together with sellotape, but has technology on his wrist that Tony Stark displayed in Iron Man. Could Donnie not invent a pair of glasses that were one piece?

Michelangelo – aka Mikey, a hormone crazed, pop culture loving, teenage Turtle. The most “complete” of the brothers. His love of pop culture was perfect considering the effect that pop has had on the world. All that was left was Mikey wearing jeans, a vest and a Mackelmore haircut.

Master Splinter – the perfect father figure and the rat doppelganger of Mr Miyagi of Karate Kid. A mammal that took care of another species and absorbed the role of father, mentor and sensei. Background story was (as mentioned above) a drunken mess but his role in the growth of the Turtles was inspiring.

Shredder – Iron man meets Wolverine meets Megatron. His suit was just that and who would want to go against that? Splinter did and somehow, Splinter held his own. Impressive. Not a leader or a terrorist or a villain. Just a bully. Shredder was simply that, a bully.

The Foot Clan – meet the men that were rejects of the League of Shadows that were spat out by Ra’s al Ghul. This troop of men were bullied and insulted by Shredder, and at some point Shredder took their lunch money, but that scene was probably deleted by Nickelodeon.

Eric Sacks – evil scientist that wanted money. Not world domination or the death of mankind. He wanted money. Or maybe he was a puppet for Shredder? Cue in Yuri Orlov (Nicholas Cage) from Lord of War.

Michael Bay Destroys Childhood

On the whole, TMNT will insult your intelligence. Tertiary educated, secondary educated, primary educated, it makes no difference. Your many years of educational experience will be insulted. Not a great movie at all and poorly done in many aspects. More aspects were wrong with the movie than were right.

Rumour has it there is a sequel scheduled for 2016. If the movie industry respects its followers, it will have to be a reboot of a reboot. A sequel is a bad idea.

About the Author: Tendai is a kid just trying to get by. A massive fan of movies, and the cinema experience is what he looks forward to everyday. Oddly enough, he does not want to direct a movie, be in one or be part of the production, but enjoys being on this side of the lens, the side that tells you this movie is worth watching.

Follow Tendai on Twitter @TendaiSibindi

More posts by Tendai:

Tell me a Story

Spinning out of Control

What are we watching?

Hit me baby one more time

Classic Movies – a Dying Breed?


I’m a massive fan of movies, and occasionally I write about the movies I have watched and about the industry. Hopefully I provide insight and shed light into Hollywood. I am happy to have discussions about movies as they are extremely important to our society. 2hrs of our lives cannot be wasted by really poor movies.


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