Carmen's caught in a virtual reality game designed by the Kids' new nemesis, the Toymaker. It's up to Juni to save his sister, and ultimately the world.Carmen's caught in a virtual reality game designed by the Kids' new nemesis, the Toymaker. It's up to Juni to save his sister, and ultimately the world.Carmen's caught in a virtual reality game designed by the Kids' new nemesis, the Toymaker. It's up to Juni to save his sister, and ultimately the world.
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!
- bob the moo
- May 2, 2004