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Featured TV on DVD Review: Big Time Movie and Rags

August 25th, 2012

Big Time Movie and Rags - Buy from Amazon

I've previously reviewed Big Time Rush a couple of times in the past, but I wasn't exactly impressed by the show. There are some shows aimed at the same target demographic that are worse, but that's damning it with faint praise. This week, Big Time Movie comes out on DVD, as part of a double-feature with Rags. Is either movie worth checking out? And combined are they worth the price?

Big Time Movie

The movie starts with the members of Big Time Rush rushing off to save a princess who had been captured by a Bond villain while they sing "Help". It turns out to be just a dream Carlos was having. In reality, Big Time Rush are in London for the first stop in their world tour, and Gustavo Rocque (Stephen Kramer Glickman) is determined to make sure they don't get into any trouble before the show starts. Carlos is convinced his dream will come true, because it is so vivid and he's been having it so many times. He's not the only one with dreams. Kendall had a dream, to become pop stars and go on a world tour, and it came true. Meanwhile, his mother, Jennifer (Challen Cates), has always dreamed of staying in a fancy historic Queen's Hotel, while his sister, Katie (Ciara Bravo), has dreams of becoming royalty. Jennifer's dream comes true. Katie's is less realistic.

While still in the airport, a secret agent, Agent Lane, is attacked by mysterious forces, but he switches his backpack with Kendall's before being captured. Later when they are checking into their hotel, two things happen. Firstly, the guys manage to evade several MI6 agents sent to grab them, and the package Agent Lane was carrying. Secondly, Katie overhears someone referred to as "The Duke of Bath" and thinks he's real royalty. We will call that the B-plot. The A-plot continues when Kendall discovers his backpack was switched and finds an anti-gravity device. Within seconds of finding the device, they are attacked by MI6, who think they are super agents; a leather-clad female agent whom James immediately hits on; and two Swedish agents, who are wildcards in all of this.

After escaping that mess, they are attacked by a bald henchman before being rescued by the leather-clad woman. It turns out she is Penny Lane (Emma Lahana), the daughter of Agent Lane. She informs them that her father has been kidnapped by Sir Atticus Moon (Trevor Devall), a billionaire business man, who plans to use the device to take over the world. Penny enlists the help of Big Time Rush to rescue her father.

If you are a fan of Big Time Rush, this TV movie should be entertaining. I am not a fan of Big Time Rush; however, I am a fan of spy movies, especially of the Bond variety, and as such, I thought this TV movie is better than the average episode of the show. It's not as good as Johnny English or Agent Cody Banks, but that isn't a completely fair comparison, as the filmmakers here were working with a much smaller budget, so the action scenes were a lot less impressive. On the other hand, a smaller budget can't be blamed for the predictable nature of the film. As soon as Katie overheard the guy being called the Duke of Baths, I new he sold bathroom related products and "The Duke of Baths" was part of an obnoxious commercial he had on TV. And no, that is not a spoiler, because it is just that obvious. Also, the quartet of leads were cast for their singing more than their acting. (Ciara Bravo continues to be the best actor, of the ones that move the plot forward.) Speaking of singing, the music here is also better than in the average episode, because it is mostly from The Beatles. Of course, I would rather listen to The Beatles sing The Beatles than listen to Big Time Rush sing The Beatles, but this is better than Big Time Rush singing Big Time Rush.


The film begins with narration from Shawn, whom we will meet shortly. He first introduces us to Charlie Prince (Max Schneider). Charles is an orphan living with his step-father, Arthur (Robert Moloney), and his two step-brothers, Andrew (Keenan Tracey) and Lloyd (Burkely Duffield). Charles is a talented singing / song-writer who wants to be in the business. His mother ran a small club before her death, but after her death, his step-father has run it into the ground. Now if he wants to become a music star, he's going to need a little help. He does get spotted by Shawn, who does work in the industry, and Shawn thinks he has real talent.

On the other hand, Kadee Worth is a massive pop star, but she wants less help, not more. Her father, Reginald, runs a major record label, Majesty Records, and through his help she's become a huge star. However, she's tired of singing songs others write for her, wearing clothing others pick out for her, hell, her boyfriend Finn (Avan Jogia) is something her marketing department pre-approved. She's itching to break out from under the massive industry machine her father has set up for her and be herself.

In order to help revive the club, Arthur, the evil step-father, is pushing his sons as the next big boy band, Androyd. It's Andrew plus Lloyd equals Androyd. The name is the best part about their music. Arthur sends Charlie to drop off their demo CD to Majesty Records for part of a talent search. On the way, he runs into Kadee, or more specifically, her dog runs into him. After dropping off the CD, he applies for a job as a part-time janitor and runs into Shawn again, who works there as a recording engineer. Shawn uses his clout at the company to get Charlie the job. (Okay, he asks the receptionists to make sure he's hired. I'm not sure how she would do that, but she gets it done.)

We see more attempts at Kadee being more in control of her singing career and Charlie struggling to start his. You know the pair are going to get together sooner rather than later.

Rags is a modern adaptation of the Cinderella story, which is very common, but with a gender-bender twist. Charlie fits the Cinderella role while Kadee fills in for Prince Charming in the movie. Does it work? Mostly, depending on your age range. On the plus side, some of the music is really good and Keke Palmer is a really talented actress and when she and Max Schneider are on screen together, there's something there. Drake Bell is also strong in his role. On the negative side, the story takes a little bit to get going and many of the villainous roles are cartoonish, both in how they were written and how they were executed. It is also very predictable. This is partially because it is based on a classic fairytale, but it is also using a number of romantic comedy clich├ęs as well. If you are a tween and haven't seen countless romantic comedies, then it will speak to you better.

Overall, I think it works well enough that the target audience will want to check it out. And if they like the music, it will have high enough replay value that it is worth picking up.

The Extras

There are no extras on the DVD. Also, the movies are in non-anamorphic widescreen. Why?

The Verdict

Big Time Movie and Rags should entertain their target audiences and since the DVD only costs $10, even if you only like one of the movies, it is probably still worth picking up. And if you like Rags, grabbing the soundtrack is not a bad idea either.

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