Teen Titans Go! to the Movies: Review
Teen Titans Go! takes hilarious shots of superheroes trying to make a name for themselves
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Sure, it would be easy to give any character(s) the benefit of the doubt when superheroes transition from the small screen of an animated series to the big screen. Fortunately, the creative team of writer/director Aaron Horvath along with writers Michael Jelenic and Peter Rida Michail took that chance in adapting the animated series to its own feature film and made it a fun and hilarious film to watch.
Reprising their roles, Cyborg (Khary Payton), Starfire (Hynden Walch), Raven (Tara Strong), Beast Boy (Greg Cipes), and Robin (Scott Menville) find themselves struggling to crawl out of the shadows from their more mainstream and well-known adult counterparts of the Justice League, namely, Green Lantern, Superman, and Wonder Woman voiced by rapper Lil Yachty, Nicolas Cage, and singer Halsey, respectively. Finding out that their efforts to become heroes are unrecognized after their dreams of being on the Hollywood big screen are nowhere to be seen, Robin leads the team to find a way to break into the movie scene to grab some of their overdue spotlight. Robin then realizes that the only way to make a name for themselves and get their own movie is to have an arch-nemesis that would prove to be a, dare I say it, worthy adversary. Enter: Slade Wilson, aka Deadpool, errr, Deathstroke. After a brief encounter with and loss to Slade, the Teen Titans regroup and meet with Hollywood Director, Jade Wilson (voiced by Kristen Bell), who directs some of the superhero movies. Things then go awry when the heroes are faced with a number of large scale obstacles en route to stardom and Robin is convinced to have a solo film with encouragement by Jade Wilson. Jade later reveals herself to be none other than Slade Wilson, who plotted to takeover the world with via brainwashing of a streaming "D.O.O.M.S.D.A.Y." device. The other Teen Titans then come to the aide of Robin, rescuing him and successfully bring an end to Deathstroke's plans.
While the plot of the film is very simple, it was the "meta" aspect of the film that brought out the laughs and enormously tongue-in-cheek humor that was primarily showcased in the initial trailer. This approach comes as no surprise from Horvath and Jelenic as they have carried the same tone from the animated series to the big screen. Not to mention that Lego Batman himself, Will Arnett, is credited with having produced the film as well. The audience in the theater where I watched the film were in no doubt fans of the characters and the series, and the response to the film was consistent with all the hilarity that ensued. It's also hard not to mention the multitude of easter eggs that the film had even to the point of including a not-so- subtle cameo *ahem* appearance by a well known legend in the comics industry. The film's biggest drawback is the development of each character. To a newcomer, understanding the characters without any reference to source material may be difficult to grasp character development especially since the main focus is on the Titans' sole leader, Robin. The supporting characters then, are there for mainly morale support and, ironically enough, sidekicks to Robin's agenda.
Despite this, the film was, overall, fun and entertaining especially for those who are regular fans of the TV series and the kind of humor that is quite opposite of the current DCEU films. It may take some getting used to especially since this is shown in a big screen format.