MOVIE REVIEW: “Scoob!” is voiced by Will Forte (Don Verdean, The Last Man on Earth [TV series]), Mark Wahlberg (The Departed , Daddy’s Home), Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, A Cure for Wellness), Gina Rodriguez (Annihilation, Deepwater Horizon), Zac Efron (Charlie St. Cloud, The Disaster Artist), Amanda Seyfried (Mean Girls, Mamma Mia!), Kiersey Clemons (Dope, Sweetheart), Ken Jeong (The Hangover, Transformers: Dark of the Moon), Tracy Morgan (30 Rock [TV series], Rio), and Frank Welker (Scooby-Doo Where Are You! [TV series], The Smurfs ). It is directed by Tony Cervone (Duck Dodgers [TV series], The Looney Tunes Show [TV series]), and written by Matt Lieberman (Free Guy, The Christmas Chronicles), Adam Sztykiel (Rampage, Made of Honor), Jack Donaldson, and Derek Elliott. Shaggy (Forte) and Scooby (Welker) separate from their beloved Mystery Inc. gang after they are whisked away to fight crime with the legendary Blue Falcon (Wahlberg) and his sidekick Dynomutt (Jeong). However, things will get tough as they come face to face with a dangerous foe: Dick Dastardly (Isaacs).
Who decided on the name of this film? “Scoob!” You know, I hardly recall anyone calling Scooby-Doo ‘Scoob’ in this movie. Maybe they did, maybe they didn’t (I don’t hold it against them), but the fact of the matter is, this film is as obnoxious as its name. I release a long sigh knowing I have to break down this movie, mainly because you’ve heard the consensus: it isn’t good. Why? Many reasons. What’s worse is you could see glimmers in the story where this could’ve been so much more, particularly in its use of Hannah-Barbara characters. Dick Dastardly is the villain, guys! Can you believe it? Part of my childhood was watching “Wacky Races” on Boomerang (back when they had no commercials) and seeing Dick Dasterdly and Muttley losing due to their schemes that would backfire. Sure, it was repetitive, but it was fun. Finding out that he would be the villain of this new Scooby-Doo venture pumped me up; made me believe that Warner Brothers was dipping into old school, and we would receive a new, animated, theatrical experience unlike any other. Well… the trailers looked… not as promising… and theaters ended up shutting down before its release… Geez. What happened, people? “Scoob!” fell prey to almost every animated feature produced by a big studio: stuffing a story with relative media, pop culture songs, and icons. Shaggy and Scooby sing “Shallow.” Blue Falcon dances to a few songs you’d find on TikTok. That’s what kids love, right? Give me a break. It’s this kind of stuff that doesn’t work for the whole family; references that may have worked a few years ago (in the smallest of time bubbles), but certainly don’t now. Because it takes a few years to animate a story, things can become outdated easily. And while I did laugh at Shaggy and Scooby singing “Shallow,” it was mainly due to a memory I have of my own friend and I singing that song terribly. Take that away and I wouldn’t have been amused (and who am I to say that everyone else can relate in this fashion?). Oy vey. You know, I have to keep myself together with this review. Honestly, for me to bash it is to do what everyone would, when really, it isn’t the worst feature out there. It certainly doesn’t make my list of good Scooby-Doo films, but it doesn’t make my list of horrible animated flicks either. “Scoob!” does what every misguided animated film for children does. It keeps the little ones content and maybe (just maybe) gives the adults either sleep time or a few chuckles here and there. “Scoob!” seeks to keep itself buoyed by its nostalgia value. The Hannah-Barbara characters are novelty, and I liked how they were included. I just with that they were handled better. Heck, I wish that the Scooby-Doo gang was handled better! Why is it that in these big features for Scooby-Doo, the gang has to separate? Like always, Scooby and Shaggy are given screentime, while the rest of the gang gets pushed to the back. Sure, Fred (Efron), Daphne (Seyfried), and Velma (Rodriguez) aren’t the favorites, but man, could you at least give them a chance? They get a few moments in this, but they are few and far between. It’s only by the end do we finally get to see the whole gang in action (aside from the opener). By then, I was just waiting for the journey to come to a close. The story and theme are familiar, with Scooby and Shaggy’s friendship being tested. We’ve seen it time and time again, and there isn’t much done to give it fresh legs besides the inclusion of Blue Falcon and Dynomutt. There were a few jokes I liked, and the animation wasn’t all too bad (the background were kind of lackluster), but aside from that, there wasn’t much to keep me invested. With great voice talent such as this and a franchise so beloved, you’d expect better. And that’s what I did. I expected something. But I guess I shouldn’t have. “Scoob!” isn’t the animated feature film we wished it to be. It has pieces that could make it something extraordinary, but fails to capitalize. If you are a fan of the legendary dog, it wouldn’t hurt you to give it a shot, but I would much rather recommend you a direct-to-video release, or the early 2000’s live-action films. FINAL SCORE: 55%= Burnt Popcorn
Here is the trailer:
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