Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

August 8, 2013

'Turbo' low on originality, high on fun

By Ryan Maddux and Andy Stuckey Daily News
Greensburg Daily News

---- — This week we watched the animated feature Turbo (PG).

Ryan Reynolds voices the title character, a snail who gains the ability to travel at speeds over 200 mph. David Soren directs.

Ryan: While Turbo is eerily reminiscent of Pixar’s Ratatouille (in term of narrative), I still found the film to be suitably entertaining. It’s not breaking any new ground and rehashes many themes from other animated features (individuality, striving toward one’s dreams, and the importance of family), but for the most part Turbo is executed in a solid manner. The animation looks great and there’s no doubt that the Indy 500 connection goes a long way in selling the film to me (and I would guess to other fans of that race as well).

Andy: Turbo is a generally fun and entertaining movie. With the high volume of animated features that are released, the overall quality of the genre has slipped significantly. Turbo is certainly not one of the great ones, but it is still better than most. The plot does borrow too heavily from other well-known animated movies, but that is a formula that works, so we are likely to keep seeing it. Fortunately Turbo executes it fairly well, making it a movie worth seeing.

Ryan: If executed properly, a movie – more specifically an animated movie – can make one believe anything, even a super-powered snail racing in the Indy 500. But I did feel the filmmakers in this movie walked a sharp line in Turbo being a fairy tale versus being a complete farce. To go along with that point there’s not much here for adults to sink their teeth into (and not that there’s anything wrong with that), but sometimes films geared towards kids transcend their intended audience. That’s not really the case here, but at the end of the day Turbo is still a noteworthy family movie.

Andy: You can tell by the plot summary that Turbo is an inherently ridiculous story. For the most part, the movie seems to understand that absurdity and embrace it. It does not quite get to the point of parody, but the movie is somewhat self-aware. This also makes for some awkward moments when the movie tries to get serious, but for the most part it carries enough charm that it is easy to overlook some of the missteps.

Turbo is a highly entertaining children’s movie. While it does not achieve greatness, it does provide a clean, fun hour and a half distraction worthy of a B.

Final Grade: B