Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? And how does that pineapple never suffer from decomposition? Oh who cares — it’s SpongeBob y’all! And he’s got all of his buddies (Patrick, Gary, Sandy, Squidward, Mr. Krabs) and even his rival Sheldon Plankton (as well as Plankton’s computer wife, Karen) are here. It’s the usual Krabby Patty eating good times, with Plankton trying to steal the secret recipe for the Krabby Patty…until a pirate named Burger Beard (Antonio Banderas, totally game for the goofy) enters the scene and makes off with the secret recipe! Whatever will Bikini Bottom do without Krabby Patties? And how will our hero get the recipe back and save the day?
Well, first off: Bikini Bottom devolves into a hilarious Mad Max wasteland in the span of 5 seconds without their beloved patties. Seeing Mr. Krabs in leather is worth the price of admission for any fan of the show. Second: that’s cheating y’all. But suffice it to say that the trailer gives you more than a hint. And when things go from animated to live-action, Banderas gets to pull out all the stops, which is exactly what’s needed when he’s playing against a group of juvenile animated invertebrates. And Sandy. (Spoiler alert: Sandy’s transformation to live-action is kinda awesome.)
What’s good? The fun, the obvious tongue-in-cheek that makes the TV series enjoyable for all ages, and the gorgeous live-action CGI SpongeBob gang is perfect.
What’s meh? Sometimes the jokes can go on a bit too long, and be a bit too silly. Then again I’m not an 8-year-old kid who’d probably love the overly goofy. There are a few extremely weird bits too, as if the creators were looking towards the stoned teens and undergrads who would ultimately watch this on Netflix. Space porpoises, crazy kalidoscope Dr. Who-like time travel sequences, and a few almost sexy beach jokes feel slightly off-kilter, but perhaps that feeling of WTHuh? is what they’re going for.
So should you see it or not? If you’ve got kids that are dying for a movie day, why not? It’s fun and goofy, and anything aimed towards the adults will most likely sail over their heads (or can be easily blown off by us oldsters). If you’re a fan of the series that remembers it when? Why not? Is it worth the 3D expense? Well, not so much; the original series was 2D, so going that route won’t be a problem here. But if you’ve got the clams to spare, it’ll make the action sequences a bit more eye-popping. Now I want a Krabby Patty…