For anyone who thinks superhero movies take themselves just a little too seriously, Teen Titans Go! To the Movies is refreshingly irreverent, and family friendly too.
Even if you haven’t seen the Cartoon Network animated series, you surely recognize Batman’s sidekick Robin (Scott Menville). He leads a group of super friends including Raven (Tara Strong), Cyborg (Khary Payton), Beast Boy (Greg Cipes) and Starfire (Hynden Walch).
Even in the world of superheroes there are too many superhero movies, and there are some hilariously serious trailers to absurd Batman movie spinoffs. Robin feels left out and sets out to get a Teen Titans movie made.
Regardless of the meta narrative, it’s rather refreshing to see a superhero movie that’s just about wanting to make a movie. The Teen Titans don’t need to save the world (although they’re not opposed to it). They just want the same respect the grown-up heroes get.
The methods the Titans attempt to earn their own movie are their own brief little episodes, probably equal to the 11 minute episodes of the show. They do form a complete narrative, but also keep the pace moving so they don’t dwell on anything too long.
So there’s a bit where they mess with the legendary superhero origin stories, try to find a nemesis worthy of a film, and various vignettes on the Warner Brothers lot.
Some hilarious bits are total one-offs but a movie like Teen Titans Go! To The Movies can get away with taking time for a Lion King spoof or making a point of saying names dramatically.
Slade Wilson (Will Arnett) mesmerizes the Titans with mental manipulations that may be your children’s first exposure to those classic tricks. Parents will be amused to see them work on both the Titans and the audience.
The Teen Titans are as confused by Deathstroke vs. Deadpool as those of us who don’t read comics and only see movies. Come on, it can’t be just me.
Teen Titans Go! Go The movies Is not above poop and fart jokes either. You get to hear Nicolas Cage talk about explosive diarrhea. Now there’s something we wouldn’t have seen in Superman Lives.
Between Teen Titans and The LEGO Batman Movie, it seems animated kids’ fare are where writers feel safe to be irreverent with the source material. Perhaps DC needs it the most since their live-action is so super serious.
Hopefully, if kids grow up thinking all superhero movies are like Teen Titans Go! To the Movies, some of them will grow up to be screenwriters and make live-action movies like this.
For now, your kids will be dancing in the aisles to Upbeat Inspirational Song sung by Michael Bolton. It’s no Everything is Awesome but it’s still plenty catchy.
Teen Titans Go! To the Movies opens July 27.