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Review By: Michael Dance
Whenever a movie is adapted from a beloved property, it's always subjected to the dreaded opinions of diehard fans. Remember all of the backlash over Daniel Craig as James Bond when fans realized he had blond hair? And weíve all met - and I'm sure some of you are - Harry Potter maniacs who hate the movies for the sole reason that they're not exactly the same as the books.
The geekier the property - think comic books and superheroes - the more vehement the backlash if the movie isn't up to the diehard fans' standards. The Internet is bombarded with comments and blog posts and message board rants about how Kevin Spacey isnít a close enough representation of Lex Luthor, or how the Hulk looks slightly too cartoonish, or how they killed off too many characters in X-Men: The Last Stand. I usually role my eyes at these nitpickers. Watch the movie for what it is - not what you imagine it should be.
But suddenly, I find myself in their place.
Let me explain. I am a huge Ninja Turtles fan. The cartoon was my favorite show as a little kid. Before I turned ten, I remember bragging that I had seen the first movie eight times. Since then, Iíve probably seen it a hundred or so more times, thanks to my DVD copy and plenty of down time in the video store where I used to work. I even mentioned the Ninja Turtles in my high school graduation speech - a reference that was met, to my surprise, with spontaneous applause. Something about Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Raphael just provokes happy nostalgia, I guess.
Well, now they've come out with an all-new, computer-animated Ninja Turtles film called TMNT. Do I review it on its own merits, or will I fall into the Geek Trap, complaining about everything I personally would've done differently? I guess we'll see...
To my surprise, TMNT is more or less a continuation of the three live-action movies made from 1990-1993. The turtlesí arch-nemesis, the Shredder, is presumed to be dead, and the rat Splinter, their sensei, has sent Leonardo on a trek through the world to learn to be a better leader. Back in New York City, Michelangelo and Donatello have taken up odd jobs. Raphael, annoyed at the sudden lack of action, has started patrolling the streets at night for criminals, vigilante-style.
The plot involves something about an ancient curse that turned a man immortal (Patrick Stewart) and his friends to stone. This unleashes thirteen monsters into the world,