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Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out of Water

June 1st, 2015

The SpongeBob Movie: A Sponge Out of Water - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack or 3D Combo Pack

Barely Lethal

On Friday, I got a package of half-a-dozen Nickelodeon releases ... all of which come out on Tuesday. Needless to say, I won't be reviewing all of them, but that's why the current box office prediction contest features Nickelodeon releases. The one I'm definitely reviewing is The SpongeBob Movie: A Sponge Out of Water, which earned great reviews and was a surprise hit at the box office. Did it deserve this success? Or will I be one of the dissenting voices?

The Movie

The film begins in live action as we follow a pirate Burger Beard, who is exploring a tiny island looking for very special treasure... a book. The book tells the tale of Bikini Bottom, a tale he tells his seagull friends and we listen in.

It is a typical day in Bikini Bottom and people are enjoying Krabby Patties, despite the glorious heath risks they pose. Suddenly, Plankton attacks in a plane, a tank, and a giant robot. (It's in that order, not all at once.) SpongeBob and Patrick defend the place for Mr. Krabs, at least until Patrick remembers he doesn't work there. The battle winds down and it looks like Plankton has lost, but it is a trick and it all comes down to SpongeBob and Plankton wrestling for the secret formula. However, while they are wrestling for it, it simply disappears. Of course, Mr. Krabs wasn't there to see that, so he assumes Plankton has it.

With no secret formula, there's no way to make more Krabby Patties, so Bikini Bottom descends into chaos immediately. We are talking Mad Max: Fury Road level post-apocalypse within a single frame. Mr. Krabs decides to get the formula from Plankton by any means necessary. SpongeBob knows Plankton didn't do it, so instead of allowing him to be punished for a crime he didn't commit, SpongeBob helps Plankton escape and the two work together to get the secret formula back.

The plot I just gave you is the simplified version of events. I can't tell you what the detailed version is, because I don't know what happened in the movie. There's not enough drugs in the world to make me understand what I watched. I've made jokes in the past about SpongeBob SquarePants TV show and how the target audience was little kids and chemically impaired college students. This is never more true with this movie. It is beyond strange. It is also constantly hilarious. The film has an energy and a sense of humor that is infectious. ... If you are in the right frame of mind. The SpongeBob Movie: A Sponge Out of Water isn't like a Pixar movie and it won't appeal to adult aficionados of the animated art form. It feels more like a kinetic Looney Tunes cartoon than one aimed at mature adults. ... Maybe. Quite frankly, I am not a mature adult and I'm around mature adults so infrequently that I'm not sure they exist. All I know is I had a blast and I can't wait to watch the movie again.

The Extras

There are four sections in the extras section: On the Surface, Underwater Awesomeness, Bikini Bottom Boogie, and Deleted/Extended/Alternate/Test Scenes. On the Surface has several featurettes, mostly of the making up variety focusing on the story, the cast, plus a couple of humorous featurettes. Underwater Awesomeness has a couple featurettes on real life underwater exploration, plus two scenes in other languages. Bikini Bottom Boogie has a few musical items. Finally, Deleted/Extended/Alternate/Test Scenes is exactly what it sounds like. Overall, it's a great amount and selection of extras.

The technical presentation is excellent. There are three different forms of video presented here, 2D animation, 3D animation, and live action elements, but there's never an issue of quality dipping when transitioning from one form to another and they are always blended seamlessly. The details are great, but it is the colors that really shine. The audio is presented in a lively 5.1 surround sound track with plenty of activity in all speakers.

As for the 3D, yes, I actually got a 3D copy of the movie. The film has an incredible amount of depth, which is actually more important that having things flung at the screen. That's not to say there aren't points in the movie where things do break the plane. The bubble scene is particularly well done in this regard. (It's a SpongeBob movie. Of course there is a bubble scene.) The 3D also doesn't hurt the video quality of the movie, which is sometimes a problem. Good depth, some fun scenes, and no issue with lower video quality. This is everything you could want from the 3D release.

The 3D Combo Pack costs $25, which is a good price for this type of release. The regular Blu-ray combo pack costs $19 and the DVD costs $15, all of which is roughly on par with other first-run releases.

The Verdict

The SpongeBob Movie: A Sponge Out of Water earned earned great reviews and I liked it better than the average critic. There's already word on another SpongeBob SquarePants movie and I can't wait to see it. This film is certainly worth owning and I would argue the 3D Combo Pack is the best deal, assuming you've made the leap to 3D.

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Filed under: Video Review, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, SpongeBob SquarePants, Antonio Banderas, Clancy Brown, Bill Fagerbakke, Tom Kenny, Mr. Lawrence