Yesterday my younger brother and I were channeling our inner child and went to see Spongebob 3D at the movies. Getting to the cinema was already a bit of a frustrating exercise since the weather was quite good and Leipzig’s inner city was swarming with people, so it was difficult to find a parking spot even in the many underground parking lots. This continued when at the theater there were long lines and things were moving slowly. I’ll never “get” how people can spontaneously decide to watch a movie without knowing what they actually want to watch and then hold up the queue. *argh* I also found it interesting how many people were buying tickets for Fifty Shades of Grey Stupid, your mom’s BDSM fantasy porn, later in the evening. Man, must they have a boring sex life to watch such garbage. You can find more stimulating stuff even on YouTube

The Spongebob movie itself was a bit of a disappointment I have to say. Unlike the trailer and marketing materials make you believe, it is not at all in full 3D and in fact you only get to see it after the first hour of the film or so. The rest is just conventional 2D animation like on the TV series with a bit of parallax thrown in. Now that wouldn’t be so bad, but there is also simply no cohesive story and most of the time it’s just not funny, give or take a few punch lines that actually do work. The movie is too busy tipping its hat to the TV series and there are references all over the place which diminish the rest of the story. You can quite literally see how they had a few ideas and then filled it with “plot devices” like time travel to forcibly stitch everything together.

Interestingly, once the 3D part begins, things get considerably better. The characters are rendered nicely and those 20 minutes with some silly hijinx are a lot more enjoyable. It is my distinct impression that going full 3D animation for the whole movie and following the adventures of this dysfunctional group of wannabe-heroes on land would have made a much more interesting experience. As it is, it’s pretty much a throwaway viewing and only 14 hours later a lot of it is fading from my mind. I’m sure all the children in the room had fun, but as a grown-up you can get more out of revisiting some episodes on TV or DVD.

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