Technically that should be The SpongeBob Squarepants Movie 2, but I digress. Whether or not you are aware, the SpongeBob TV show has been in a state of disarray for the last few years. The new writers Nickelodeon hired have no idea what they are doing, and it has turned one of my favorite childhood TV shows into a terrible series that now makes me groan whenever I think of it. When they announced a second movie was to be made under the watchful eye of Steven Hillenburg (the show’s original creator/writer), I was intrigued, yet cautious to say the least. However, upon leaving the theatre, I was left with a glimmer of hope for my (once) little, yellow friend.
I honestly can’t explain much of the plot because it is pretty…. random. I will say that Plankton attempts to steal the Krabby Patty formula (surprise, surprise) but he’s not the only one. From there, the film goes all over the place in terms of setting; they’re in Bikini Bottom, then the cosmos (what?), then on dry land. Despite this, the movie’s pacing is solid for the most part, and even though the “Plankton Stealing the Formula” plot has been done to death, it feels surprisingly fresh thanks to a few changes they make here and there. At a certain point it does feel like the writers ripped-off F.U.N. (one of the best episodes of the show), but this is a minor complaint compared to the full scale adventure this movie has. The characters are also memorable. Each one of them is close to their original selves and it is fun to watch them NOT be butchered by character assassination. The animation is top notch and the effects are very convincing, as well as the props. The jokes are: 10% Hysterical, 60% Very Funny, and 30% Terrible. There are many jokes for kids and adults (including an awesome reference to The Shining), and they are delivered in a rapid-fire pace which keeps the audience wanting more.
How about what I didn’t like? Well, Antonio Banderas’ performance for one (although it’s better than Expendables 3). Otherwise, remember the live action moments in the trailer? Yeah, those only show up at the last twenty minutes. It’s a little false advertising or at least leading us on to something totally different from what we actually watch. It is still there however, and when it comes, it’s pretty darn entertaining. Other than that, it’s just a few atrocious jokes, and the story does not have a clear focus on where it wants to go. This gets Guy’s Guru Grade of a B.
*EDIT* I discovered this review (that I wrote in early 2015) in my flash drive after re-watching the movie. Looking back, this review looks like it was written by a fanboy with a 9th grader’s understanding of English. Be that as it may, the movie is still an enjoyable, well-animated, and funny children’s flick.