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From the makers of MADAGASCAR and KUNG FU PANDA, TURBO is a high-velocity 3D comedy about a snail who dares to dream big - and fast. After a freak accident infuses him with the power of super-speed, Turbo kicks into overdrive and embarks on an extraordinary journey to achieve the seemingly impossible: competing in the world's fastest race, the Indianapolis 500. With the help of his tricked-out streetwise snail crew, this ultimate underdog puts his heart and shell on the line to prove that no dream is too big, and no dreamer too small. Written by
At glance, there's already a sense that Turbo suffers of being unoriginal. It is yet another "inspirational" film of an underdog trying to make his impossible dream come true, and the fact that the concept is about a snail wishing to be as fast as a race car, it's obvious that it's trying to resemble with Ratatouille. In execution, Turbo results differently. It's shallow when it's trying to be inspiring, but there's another message that can be much interesting than the iteration. Turbo is never ought to break some grounds nor bring any powerful drama, but it has its unique charm and humor that people may adore.
Turbo may not have the smartest idea, but it tells a somehow compellingly fun story. It mostly makes fun of its own conceit, because seriously it does sound like a big joke. The plot itself is just basic storytelling where it simply explores around the characters and pull off some random humor. It hardly gets to show much originality. The central message in the end is pretty much too familiar in this time. Other than those generic points, it's actually a large satirical meme, where bigger fame and money mostly goes to the weirder talents. But for a good cause; the real heart(yet still a joke) comes to the fact that the people who supports Theo/Turbo would actually risk their lives taking him into the race, because his dream is probably the absolute hope for saving their businesses. The film usually plays like that, there's a point when it sounds preposterous even if it's supposed to be heartwarming. It's strange, but that is one of the charms of the film.
The voices behind the characters can be too recognizable, but they're not distracting anyway. They all brought enough personalities in their animated counterparts. Although the story doesn't require any extraordinary or groundbreaking visual features, the animation still manages to display a lot of stylish spectacles. You can see them in the final race scene, the power line race, and the snails' imagination while slithering through their mini tracks. The 3D works great too, though it's not going to be too remarkable.
Turbo is never destined to be the best. As long as it's as humble as its scale and as its main character, it's all good. It's kind of hard to get over the lack of originality unless you're honestly entertained throughout the experience. The real point of the movie is to present how ridiculous the world they made where it mocks on whatever nature and today's society do, yet scatter some thematically endearing subplots. Besides, this is from Dreamworks. They are usually known for pop culture references and inevitable slapstick humor, but here they used those elements in a smarter way. The film still has the heart that good animated movies have and when it goes there, it tends to be sweeter. Turbo is basic stuff where the fun is more than just colorful images showing off on screen.
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