FRIDAY NIGHT MOVIE REVIEW: Last night, I saw “An Extremely Goofy Movie,” which is voiced by Bill Farmer (Toy Story, Monsters Inc.), Jason Marsden (General Hospital [TV series], Spirited Away), Jeff Bennett (Johnny Bravo [TV series], Enchanted), Jim Cummings (The Lion King, Shrek), Brad Garrett (Everybody Loves Raymond [TV series], Finding Nemo), Rob Paulsen (Animaniacs [TV series], The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius [TV series]), Pauly Shore (Encino Man, Son in Law), and Vicki Lewis (Finding Nemo, Newsradio [TV series]). It is directed by Douglas McCarthy (Marvin the Martian in the Third Dimension [Short], Carrotblanca [Short]), and written by Scott Spencer Gorden (Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas [Video], Saved by the Bell [TV series]) and Hillary Carlip. Max (Marsden) heads off to college, leaving his dad, Goofy (Farmer), behind in his sadness of Max’s absence. Soon after, Goofy gets fired from his job, leaving him no options but to finish his degree in college to obtain more work. Now Max has to put up with his father while trying to impress his new peers.
As September is winding down and October is on the rise, I took it upon myself to review a simple film; one that didn’t offer much to think on. How did “An Extremely Goofy Movie” come into question? You’ve got me. It could’ve been the fact that my friend logged out of his Netflix account, leaving me with the kid’s log in to utilize (which, I must say, contained some great childhood features). We all know how much I love “A Goofy Movie.” Its animation is beautiful, the songs are catchy for not being mainstream, and the story is wholesome. Disney direct-to-video sequels have never had a good track record, and while I didn’t expect much from this second outing into my favorite goof’s life, I was hoping for something of substance. Unfortunately, I didn’t receive much. “An Extremely Goody Movie” takes place a few years after the events of its predecessor, finding Max heading off to college and Goofy reeling in the fact his son won’t be around much anymore. It’s your typical Goofy-centric storyline, however I always took comfort in the father-son dynamic that these tales have always sported. My issue with the plot solely lies in its inability to develop its characters on a deeper level. Max didn’t seem to learn a single thing from the first movie, and is even more of a jerk in this flick; to a point where it’s difficult to root for him. Of course, he was embarrassed by his father in “A Goofy Movie,” but it was on a level I could understand. He loved a girl, wanted to hang out with her for a weekend, but was placed on a road trip with his goof of a dad. Their bickering was what made the movie, however in this sequel it was mainly one-sided. Goofy assumed the role of the victim, while Max constantly bashed on him. I didn’t like this development, and found it to be shallow on the character’s part. Why would I want Max to move up the social ladder in college if he’s unrelatable? The only thing I could really relate to him on is the fact that he’s in college. Other than that, he was more one-dimensional in this outing. Aside from that betrayal of the father-son dynamic, this movie’s plot in general doesn’t hold weight. What was this thing essentially about? I guess Max was trying to get popular through the X-games and had to get past a frat house leader to the gold, but that couldn’t be it…right? Ah yes, there’s Goofy, who had to return to college to make Max hate him more, and fall in love with a librarian in the process. A few things happened in this new endeavor, but there wasn’t really a core theme to revolve around. We jumped from one conflict to the next, while being subjected to the atmosphere of what college is in the process. Of course, the writers tried to subject a heartfelt message, though it seemed to fall flat. I know what would happen, as most audiences should: Max doesn’t like his father’s shenanigans, they fight, they separate, they come back together. It happened in the first and was surely going to happen in this one. I just wish that I took away something out of this whole experience! Admittedly, I did laugh quite a bit. There were some good jokes (and some cringey ones) and fun sequences. This movie can be salvaged as a nice, entertaining fluff of an hour, but if you want something of substance you’ll have to look somewhere else (particularly “A Goofy Movie”). On top of that, the animation has seemed to get worse. Yes, it’s sleek and looks new. However, the motions were more restrained as I think that there weren’t many instances of hand drawing. It bummed me out, and it lost authenticity points because of it. Also, where’s the music?! While the first one had musical numbers, this had zip, resorting to playing a few 70s songs before the end of the runtime. I was disappointed because I looked for something to sing along to. That whole factor being taken away kinda lessened the blow of the entire picture (not like it was a heavy hitter beforehand). “An Extremely Goofy Movie” isn’t a terrible release, but it is a tired, hollow one. The rich character development found in its predecessor isn’t visible, and the theme isn’t as wholesome or heartfelt, leaving me bereft of a hearty movie-watching experience. While it isn’t bad, I would certainly point you to another cartoon sequel (possibly “Kronk’s New Groove”). FINAL SCORE: 59%= Burnt Popcorn
Here is the trailer: