Set in an era where superheroes are commonly known and accepted, young William Stronghold, the son of the Commander and Jetstream, tries to find a balance between being a normal teenager and an extraordinary being.
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Under-age agents Juni and Carmen Cortez set out on their newest most mind-blowing mission yet: journeying inside the virtual reality world of a 3-D video game designed to outsmart them, as the awe-inspiring graphics and creatures of gaming come to real life. Relying on humor, gadgetry, bravery, family bonds and lightning-quick reflexes, the Spy Kids must battle through tougher and tougher levels of the game, facing challenges that include racing against road warriors and surfing on boiling lava, in order to save the world from a power hungry villain. Written by
Anthony Pereyra <email@example.com>
The HD/3-D process is the same used by director James Cameron for his IMAX feature Ghosts of the Abyss (2003), although the projection is different. Cameron used polarized projection only viewable in special venues. Rodriguez used the traditional anaglyph (notable for its scarlet red and cyan blue lensed glasses) projection. The cameras used for the film consisted of two custom-designed Sony HDC-950 cameras (HDCAM) which have had their image sensors separated from the main body of the camera and rehoused 70mm apart - the same distance between a pair of human eyes. This also allowed director Robert Rodriguez to view immediate 3D playback on-set. See more »
In the moon scenes, the position of the Earth relative to the characters changes between shots. See more »
The 3-D thing didn't work for me but there is still enough style and silliness to amuse both kids and adults
Juni Cortez is no longer with the OSS and is now a private detective, taking work where he can get it. However, the President himself requests Juni return to service as his sister is in danger. She has entered, and become trapped in, a deadly video game called Game Over which has been designed by the Toymaker. In it he ensnares children's minds forever. Juni is sent in to rescue her and team up to stop the Toymaker's evil plot. Enlisting his grandfather's help, Juni sets out to win the unwinable level 5.
I usually don't enter a film series in the middle simply because it is often difficult to appreciate the third instalment of anything without having seen what has gone before. However, when it comes to a kids' film, I was pretty sure that I could managed to battle through the labyrinth-like plotting of the Sky Kids series! I started watching this film in 3-D (I had a 2 dvd set) but the glasses were a little uncomfortable and the colours looked funny all the way through. After seeing a few items sort of float vaguely around my television I was quite unimpressed and decided just to go with the 2-D disk. The plot is pretty thin (it's never really clear what the attraction of the game is or what the Toymaker even wants) but it sets up a colourful and enjoyable little ride through a computer game - which is delivered pretty well despite all it's silliness!
The main weapon in the Spy Kids' cannon is it's stars - both actors and director. Rodriguez is a very good director when it comes to style and action and his influence makes this film a lot more fun than others likely would. He is slick but also fully aware that he needs to make it `fun' and not just colourful and noisy. It's all a bit silly of course but the 3-D gimmick is a little bit heavy at times (like the old films in the 50's that had actors punching at the screen) but it isn't that bad. The reason the silliness doesn't really damage the film is because the actors seem to play to it - and a very fine series of performances these are. Pretty much all the cast are good fun and their performances are about as hammy and fun as you can imagine. Sabara is great fun - a cool kid without any of the horrid cutesy stuff that can happen. I found Vega less fun as she was a little too smart for my liking, but she was still fun and the rest of the kids were suitably fun with not a bad performance between them. The adult cast will provide much of the fun for the adults watching - there is a large number of Rodriguez regulars in the cast who all overplay to suit the sense of fun the film has.
Montalban is great fun. Forever Khan in my mind, he has a great voice and screen presence and he heavy makes the message of forgiveness work reasonably well and not just being mawkish like it should be! Stallone hams it up and has good fun even if his multiple personalities don't totally work. Clooney has fun in his small role but the rest of the cast are all cameos some of them are used pretty well and got a giggle but others just show their faces. However, they don't detract from the film and it at least will amuse parents to see people like Martin, Trejo, Cumming, Shalhoub, Buscemi, Paxton, Wood and Hayek. The out takes at the end made me realise how good the performances were - it just never dawned on me that, although I knew it wasn't real, that 95% of this was shot on greenscreen - making acting to anything that little bit harder.
Overall, this is a silly film but it is one that kids will love. The sheer sense of fun that Rodriguez brings to it is infectious and makes for a great 90 minutes with the kids. The star cast made it more enjoyable for me and helped the sense that everyone was just enjoying themselves. It is hardly a great film but it does just what you expect it to do and who can ask anymore than that? On the basis of this I will definitely be watching the first two films when I cross their paths. Sad - but true!
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