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The Cinematic Katzenjammer: May 13: The Smurfs


May 13: The Smurfs

"When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the tiny blue Smurfs out of their village, they tumble from their magical world into New York City."

How come magical portals and strange occurrences only happen in New York City? And it seems like every kids movie these days HAS to be set in the Big Apple. Kids don't care where a movie is set and most of them have never even been to New York. Sure, it's all about costs and budget reasons, but whatever happened to a kids movie set in Small Town, USA? You know, something relatable. At least most of the time, the movie uses its setting, having scenes at landmark locations like the Empire State Building or Time Square. The Smurfs, however, really doesn't use the city, except a quick trip to FAO Schwarz and Central Park. If you HAVE to set a movie in NYC, at least use the damn city.  

She begs to be used and abused.  

The Smurfs fails at much more than just utilizing its setting. Its humor is dated, with incredibly stale jokes and references older than the kids the movie is made for. Not only are these jokes bad, they're terribly annoying. The little blue people have always replaced "smurf" with many other words in their conversation, and they really don't hold back using it in the movie. Every other word is smurf, and it gets so irritating you just want to step on all of them, making a blue mess and ruining a perfectly good pair of shoes. 

Mother smurfing shit. 

There really is no plot to The Smurfs. They're being chased by the "evil wizard" Gargamel (played so poorly by Hank Azaria) whose only goal in life is to murder the little blue people for their magic. As they're fleeing their village, a portal opens up, leading them to New York City. It's there that they meet Patrick (Neil Patrick Harris) and Grace (Jayma Mays). Then a bunch of shit happens and everyone learns something from it. There is really no substance to any part of the film and the talent involved (why they agreed in the first place, I don't know) is completely under-utilized. NPH is much better than this and it really upsets me to see him fall to this level. I was thinking he'd be a redeeming factor for the movie, but he looks like he doesn't even care and brings nothing to the role. 

This is legend-wait for it... God awful. 

I would not recommend The Smurfs. Sure, I was never a fan of the original cartoon or the comics, but I really can't see how this is a faithful adaption. It's the same run-of-the-mill awful kind of entertainment that plagues kids movies these days. The fact that a sequel and a third film have already been greenlit pisses me off and, if this is the kind of shit kids are raised on these days, I have no hope for the future. 

The Bad:
the premise and the fact it was actually made
The Ugly:
writing and directing so bad, it makes Neil Patrick Harris look awful 
The Awful:
taking a balloon of blue paint and throwing it against the wall would be more entertaining and humorous than The Smurfs

Overall: 1.7/10


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