I was skeptical when I first saw the trailer for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot and when I first saw this film, I thought it was pretty terrible. Upon a second watch in anticipation of the sequel, I could find some positive parts in this film but it is still pretty terrible. There is nothing wrong with the special effects and for the most part, the turtles aren't that bad, it's mostly everything around them from the plot to the acting to the shoddy camera work.
Megan Fox plays the intrepid reporter April O'Neil and starts to ruin the movie from the beginning. When the film tries to incorporate and slapdash origin story, it feels contrived and ridiculous. Fox pouts and theorizes with her awful acting. I wish they had chosen a legitimate actress to help this silly film along and not Michael Bay's attempt at eye-candy.
Will Arnett and William Fichtner look a lot alike and even have the same name so it is easy to mistake them. Arnett serves as the comedic relief, which is a bit of overkill since the turtles also attempt humor. Fichtner plays the villain Eric Sacks who conspires with the archvillain Shredder played by CGI and Tohoru Masamune. The new Shredder will take some getting used to but his magnetic claws can be kind of cool.
The turtles are fine by me, though the special effects looked odd at first. I was pleased to find out that Noel Fisher of Shameless brought the quipping Michaelangelo to life. Johnny Knoxville was recognizable was Leonardo though he was just the voice. I didn't much like Splinter voiced by Tony Shalhoub but the talking rat leader was always kind of strange. It certainly doesn't match the tortured puppet from the original live-action movie. The action has some fun parts like sliding down the snowy hill and fighitng on New York rooftops, enough to satisfy my childhood imagination.
These movies are silly so it is a bit aceptable for them to be completely off-the-wall without striving for great quality as a film. I think it is dumb and hyperbolic when fans claim that their childhoods were destroyed by a remake. I was a fan of the halfshell ninjas since a young boy but could move on if these films weren't living up to some sort of expectation. I am glad that these reboots exist even if they are mostly just nonsense. I'm curious as to how the sequel will play out.