Skeletor Reviews the Script to Michael Bay's NINJA TURTLES!---SATIRE
Is this script really the trainwreck people suspect it to be? Or is it really a fantastic reboot of the classic franchise? Hit the jump to find out! Beware for MAJOR SPOILERS!
I discovered the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at a swap meet when I was three years old. Two VHS tapes. I was mesmerized by these strange characters. I loved it. They led me to videos, toys, games, and even the world of comics. I'll just say that I'm a huge fan.
The first TMNT is my favorite movie of all time. I've pretty much memorized it line by line. I always hoped that one day, a TMNT movie would be as good as the first.
I hoped that the reboot would be this.
A new movie, with top notch special effects showcasing the awesome characters of the original comics. I was so eager to see this movie. I've been with it ever sense the idea came about.
Even when Michael Bay's Platinum Dunes was announced to be producing the film.
Ever since this move was announced, I have defended it. I sort of enjoyed some of Platinum Dunes' films (doesn't mean I thought they were good.)I thought, hey they could pull this's off. Being the fan I am, I was excited as hell.
Then came the alien comments. It was worrying at first, but hey, the turtles WERE mutated by an alien mutagen in the comics. That's probably what they meant. I kept defending the film to all the vitriol and hate it was getting. I was still enthusiastic.
But early today, a script landed in my lap. "The Blue Door" by Applebaum & Nemec is 120 pages long. While it is dated january 30th, the script definitley matches what we've heard so far. Let me give you a spoiler filled synopsis.
We start out at a government facility where we meet Colonel Schrader (get it? Schrader/Shredder) and his army (called "The Foot" for no particular reason). He's talking about this mysterious "Project Aries". We then move to amateur hockey player/night watchman Casey Jones. He's in an on and off relationship with Journalism student April O'Neil, who's trying to convince him to move to New York with her.
Casey goes to his job as the Night watchman of a furniture parts factory.
While keeping watch, he stumbles upon a group of three humanoid turtles being held captive by foot soldiers. He releases them and they reveal themselves to be Leonardo, Donatello and Raphael. He realizes that the factory is really a front for a government organization. They convince Casey to help them rescue their younger brother, Michelangelo. As they are about to leave with the unconscious Mike, Schrader and the Foot find them. They pile into an elevator to escape the foot, with Micheangelo being used as a shield when bullets are fired at them. They get out to the factory and the Turtles fight the soldiers.
One part of this scene has one of the turtles THROWING A FORKLIFT, which BOUNCES OFF ANOTHER TURTLE'S SHELL, and INTO AN SUV, causing a HUGE EXPLOSION.
The turtles fight the soldiers in an car chase as they try to catch up to Casey, who is driving a getaway truck with Michelangelo in the back.
The truck ends up crashing through a frozen river and Michelangelo is thought to be lost. Only for him to burst through the Ice to attack ambushing soldiers. At which point he uses a pair of gun holsters as nunchucks.
The turtles escape to an abandoned barn with Casey. They explain that they need to get back to Splinter in New York, and that they were once regular turtles who were mutated, along with Splinter, by a mutanagenic ooze. The turtles make weapons out of farm tools and Casey tells them about April moving to New York. They make contact with Splinter using a makeshift communicator. He warns of imminent danger.
They go to April's house where Casey distracts April by saying he wants to go with her, as the turtles pile into the open U-Haul truck in the driveway. April and Casey take the truck and start their journey to New York, while in the back, the turtles use April's iPad to learn about Project Aries, which was started the day the turtles were covered in ooze seventeen years ago. They also discover that the focus of the project is mutagens and altered species. They speculate that they were part of Project Aries.
Meanwhile, the foot intercept the communication signal from when the turtles were in the barn. Schrader sends two lackeys to find Splinter.
The turtles keep fighting in the back of the truck, while April gets more and more suspicious. After a while, they are ambushed by foot soldiers on motorcycle. They didn't disguise their signal from using the iPad. The turtles, Casey and April (who now discovers the turtles) jump from the freeway to a passing subway train. The turtles fight soldiers on top of the train as April and Casey duck for cover. The fight comes to Raphael and Schrader, who is now on top of the train. As they fight, a piece of Schrader's skin is removed, with many blades protruding from underneath. Raph manages to kick Schrader off the train as they reach the New York subway tunnels.
During this, the two lackeys that Schrader sent for Splinter are revealed to be Bebop and Rocksteady, exactly as they were in the cartoon. They ambush Splinter, but he's able to defend himself from them. Right as they are about to gain the upper hand, the turtles appear to rescue Splinter. April records a video saying that in the event of her death, the video belongs to the CBS affiliate she works for, but her phone is knocked out of her hands. The turtles distract Bebop and Rocksteady and are able to escape with Splinter. Bebop and Rocksteady find April's phone and report it to Schrader.
After they've escaped, Raphael reveals that Schrader is not human, which causes Splinter to reveal that Schrader is from Dimension X. He got here because Earth and Dimension X are crashing together, making portals to one another. This is evidenced by many recent national disasters. April says that at the building she works in, they can find info about theses national disasters. April and Casey go into the building as the turtles sneak in and steal an access card that gets them into the room containing the info. But Schrader has also followed them there. He is suspicious of April and Casey, so he uses April's phone to call Casey. When Casey's phone rings, Schrader chases them to the room, only to be locked out when the turtles, April and Casey get inside.
They find out that the natural disasters have been coming closer and closer to New York. Meaning the next portal will be in the center of New York. The turtles escape with April and Casey, but as they're leaving , an elevator shaft turns into a ravine in a lush jungle, with a waterfall, which our heroes dive into. As they swim through the jungle, they see a sewer tunnel slowly fading away. They reach land and run toward the tunnel. April and Casey get through, but the turtles don't.
Leonardo sees one of his brothers being stricken down. He runs to his brother only to discover... It's not his brother. It's a tattooed turtle warrior. He knows the turtle's names and reveals that they are part of a prophecy. They are in Dimension X, which is being taken over by the Warlord Krang.
The turtle warrior tells the turtles that when they were born, the elders of their people said they would be the ones to defeat Krang. The turtle's parents (who were also turtle warriors) put the young turtles into the protection of their most trusted friend, Master Splinter. They find out their parents were killed by Krang. The origin with the ooze was all a ruse to keep them safe from Krang.
The warrior says that while Krang has not yet won the war, he will with a new device he has just finished constructing called The Technodrome. But he needs power for it. While Dimension X has many natural resources, it has no infrastructure, so he has to charge the Technodrome with the power grid in alphabet city. Once it's finished charging, he will break the portal and end the war on Dimension X. He needs four orbs (which keep Dimension X and earth from becoming one.) and he already has three. The turtle warrior was protecting the fourth and it has fallen into the hands of Krang. He gives them weapons created for them by their father. The warrior sends them off. The portal opens again and they find Splinter April and Casey. The turtles are angry with Splinter for lying to them, but they need to worry about the Technodrome first.
New York and Dimension X are melding together as this happens, with citizens going crazy as the giant Technodrome starts to appear over the skyline. The turtles, along with April and Casey, race to seperate the four orbs inside the Technodrome, as Splinter stays back to fight off enemy forces. A general (Davies), sends fighter jets toward the Technodrome.
Our heroes reach the Technodrome. A cable is siphoning power from the grid.Meanwhile, Splinter is being allied by numerous turtle warriors. The turtles enter the Technodrome, leaving Casey and April to get into the facility (which is described as an electric maze) and shut the power down.
As Schrader, Bebop and rocksteady come to defend the power cable, the turtles infiltrate the Technodrome until they reach the main command center. Meanwhile Casey enters an area of the grid that is extremley dangerous, with an enemy who's following him being killed by exposed wires, which reveal Casey to the enemies.
The turtles start their fight with Krang (described as a mass of grey matter an an armored suit with four arms.) Krang taunts the turtles, telling them that their fear is like the one in their father's eyes when Krang killed him. Casey runs throught the high voltage wires to escape enemies as April sends Davies to help him. Casey ducks throught the wires as Schrader lines up a shot.
The turtles get the better of Krang, destroying his suit as the fighter jets fly closer towards the Technodrome. Casey sees that Schrader, Bebop and Rocksteady are standing in a pool of collant liquid from all of the gunshots fired in the grid. He kicks a stand that drops numerous exposed cables into the pool of coolant and Schrader, Bebop and Rocksteady are incapacitated by the blast of electricity.
Casey slams the emergency shut off button as the jets shoot missiles at the Technodrome. The turtles, having just defeated Krang, take the orbs and leap out of the huge window of the main command center.
Just as the missles hit the Technodrome, the orbs go dark and Dimension X and New York seperate. Davies and other military subdue Schrader, Bebop and Rocksteady in a giant steel kennel.
The turtles, Splinter, April and Casey all stand together in the wreckage. Splinter reveals that each of the turtles must return the orbs back to their respectful places at the four corners of the earth seperately. At each place they will get Turtle warrior trainees from Dimension X.
The film ends with April giving a rousing speech. We see all of the turtles in different parts of the globe, returning the orbs to their rightful place. Her speech ends with her saying that people are never as alone as they think they are.
So let's get into the review.
- The script focuses on secondary human characters instead of the more interesting main characters (reminds me of the other 80s cartoon movies Bay was involved in)
- Iconic characters like the Shredder are bastardized while Bebop and Rocksteady are LITERALLY EXACTLY THE SAME as their cartoon personas.
- I can not count how many times the Turtles all fold into their shells and bounce around a room to do something. One scene describe the turtle as a bowling ball and the foot soldiers as the pins.
- We get lines like this:
RAPHAEL (after Casey asks how they know kung-fu): "Kung-Fu? What do we look like? Cartoon Panda bears? We are trained in Ninjitsu. And we don't just know it, we serve it for dinner."
RAPHAEL: "That damn frog was right. It ain't easy being green."
AGGRO GAURD O.S.: "Come get a taste of the Wu-Tang!"
TURTLE WARRIOR (explaining how the Technodrome needs the orbs): "You do it with balls... and not the ones you're thinkin' of."
TURTLE WARRIOR: "No more 'buts', Rockstar. There's only one thing left to do. You gotta BELIEVE!--"
These are all actual lines from the script.
- Krang, arguably the main villain, has two lines in the script.
- There is a perfect opprotunity for the turtles to wear their original red masks, only for them to turn out to be black? And Casey mentions Resivoir Dogs while giving them their color-coded masks.
I honestly don't have it in me to list everything I found to be terrible in this script, but I think you get the idea.
END OF SPOILERS
This piece of sh*t is luckily getting rewritten, but one can only guess how much. I can only hope for a major rehaul. I'll let you read the above sysnopsis (or if you look hard enough, the actual script) and you can decide for yourself.
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