The original 1980s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were intended as a parody of superhero comics. But this sequel to 2014’s reboot is just one more samey-same sci-fi action blockbuster that apes everything from Ghostbusters and Independence Day to The Avengers and The Dark Knight, and cannot hope to distinguish itself in such company. It’s tough to know whom this movie aimed at: It’s too long and confusing for children, yet its plot about an alien who wants to take over Earth for the usual reasons (ie, no plausible ones) plays like the script was written by an eight-year-old. Indeed, the creepy anthromophorized titular turtles—they’ve got the minds of doofy adolescents, the bodies of adult bodybuilders and the faces of sluggish reptiles, all courtesy of CGI—come across as a child’s idea of what being a grownup must be like, namely non-stop pizza parties and hanging out in your own cool secret underground lair clubhouse. All of that when you’re not fighting aliens with faux martial arts, of course. It would be an insult to cartoons to call this cartoonish. It’s just loud, chaotic, and juvenile.
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