By Ranny Levy, President and Founder of Kids First! and grandmother extraordinaire
From the makers of “Madagascar” and “Kung Fu Panda,” “Turbo” is a high-velocity 3D comedy about an underdog snail who kicks into overdrive when he miraculously attains the power of super-speed. But after making fast friends with a crew of streetwise, tricked-out es-car-goes, Turbo learns that no one succeeds on their own. So he puts his heart and shell on the line to help his pals achieve their dreams, before Turbo-charging his own impossible dream: winning the Indy 500. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Cassandra Hsiao (age 15) comments, “Although initially skeptical, I changed my mind for the better because of the movie’s amusing wit and heart.” Stacy Belizaire (age 10) adds, “I love the movie ‘Turbo!’ It is really fun and must have been an awesome movie to act in.”
Check out their full reviews below and see the difference between a 15-year-old and a 10-year-old’s perspective.
By Cassandra Hsiao, age 14, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
Video review available here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLHQ_TZimBk
Geared towards kids under the age of 10, “Turbo” will be sure to have kids delighted and cheering the snails on. However, the excitement merely lingers for a short while, just like the exhaust trail from a racecar speeding by.
For a movie about racing snails, “Turbo” isn’t half as bad as I thought it would be. Although initially skeptical, I changed my mind for the better because of the movie’s amusing wit and heart. A normal garden snail named Theo has big dreams of being the fastest racer in the world. His brother, Chet, sees Theo’s dream as nonsense and a distraction to their work in the garden. One day, a freak accident involving Nitrous Oxide changes Theo to Turbo. Suddenly this snail has the abilities of a car – headlights, a stereo, and of course, unparalleled speed powers! A Mexican taco seller, who shares the same dreams as Turbo, enters the snail in the Indy 500. On his journey to the greatest car race in the world, Turbo befriends a gang of smooth cool snails (you’ll never look at snails the same way again) and meets his rival, the menacing racer, world-renowned Guy Gagne.
The plot is straightforward and simple, mixed in with heart-warming feel-good morals typical of underdog family-friendly animated genres. “Dream big!” the film seems to shout at every turn. I could have done without highlighting the message quite so much. Although “Turbo” starts off slow, it gradually begins to pick up speed. The filmmakers also could have included more brother bonding moments between Turbo and Chet.
The voice-overs are solid, especially Ryan Reynolds’ Turbo and Paul Giamatti’s Chet. The snail gang is hilarious, voiced by Maya Rudolph, Ben Schwartz, Kurtwood Smith, Snoop Dogg and Samuel L. Jackson. Unlike Blue Sky Studio’s “Epic” that came out earlier this year, DreamWorks hired big names not because of their celebrity status, but because their voices actually fit the slick, suave characters.
At its best, “Turbo” is a heart-pounding inspiring flick, perfect to keep kids entertained. “Turbo” isn’t going to make its way into my evergreen library but certainly this family-friendly film will grab the kids’ attention long enough to give parents a much needed summer break. The 3D is impressive! I felt like I was really racing alongside the snails. The film offers a snails-eye view, an interesting perspective especially while racing. “Turbo” can’t be compared to Pixar’s movies, but even so, it’s a rip-roaring adventure. Enter the race and catch “Turbo” in theaters, July 17!
By Stacy-Love Belizaire, age 10, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic.
Stacy’s video review, with her older sister is available here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e5_saBFAjoI
I love the movie “Turbo!” It is really fun and must have been an awesome movie to act in. This movie is an animated film about super-speed snail racing and features the voices of many different actors. Turbo is a lonely garden snail who is about to gain super speed powers and will race in the “Indy 500” which is meant for cars but, his amigo Tito didn’t take “no” for an answer.
This is a fast-action movie where Turbo, who watches a speed race every night and idolizes Guy Gangnè who is the national champion racer. Turbo memorizes every line he says as well as the commercial for the drink: Adrenolade. One day, when he is working in the garden, a “big red” tomato falls on the other side of the garden where the lawn is being mowed. Turbo is so slow that he imagines he is the racer racing for the “big red” tomato. He does not make it to the tomato but he still goes on his own journey in the rain all alone. This is when everything starts to happen and Turbo receives his powers by a racing car’s kind of gas.
The main characters are Turbo the snail (Ryan Reynolds), Tito (Michael Pena), Chet (Paul Giammati), White Shadow (Michael Bell), Whiplash (Samuel L. Jackson), Smoove Mov (Snoop Dogg), Burn (Maya Rudolph) and Skid Mark (Ben Swartz). All these characters are great but my favorite and the one that stands out the most is Chet because he was pretty annoying and he is the one that puts most of the negativity into the movie. I thought it was really cool how the writer did that.
My favorite part is near the end where after Turbo loses all of his powers and then tries racing again at Dos Bros Tacos for everyone to see. All of a sudden, when it is almost time to race he gets all of his powers back in an amazing magical moment and it is really nice and cool. Turbo is really happy that he gains back his powers and speed.
I recommend the movie to all ages for anyone who loves action-filled adventures and having fun. I also found this movie very cool and safe for children to watch. It has very funny characters and scenes. The moral of this story is that even though you are a small snail and have big dreams, you can do anything you set your mind to.
Ranny Levy – Founder and President
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