I have long enjoyed Aqua Teen Hunger Force, because it nails wierd-for-the-sake-of-wierd right on the head. Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie For Theaters, while not the ‘best movie EVAR ZOMG,’ will delight fans of the series.
Since most of this review will be about bashing what wasn’t done right about the movie- lets establish some stuff first- one, I liked it, it had some good laughs and running jokes. It’s smarter, more cunningly paced and arranged than the typical modern gross-out, pop-riff, B/C-star-studded comedy that saturate theaters.
A 90 minute movie based on a 15 minute show needs to feel like one of two things- either the experience of a ‘marathon session’- many of which I have had and enjoyed, or a really good long episode. ATHFCMFT tries for the later, and I think somewhat falls short; if the folks at Adult Swim go for another; hopefully it will take more of a vignette fashion, with 3-5 episode caliber ‘plots’ (to use that term loosely), jumping to one another to keep the laughs moving. The central plot of the movie is gleefully absurd, and pulls in Carl, the Plutonians and the Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future, with visits to Dr. Wierd and Steve. Dr. Wierd works best when he has nothing at all to do with what’s going on and can be Dr. Wierd for the sake of wierd; his best scenes are those earliest in the movie. The film’s plot is, ironically enough, almost too coherent; ATHF’s plot holes and lack of continuity are one of the series’s charms, and a nod to that would be wonderful. The film tries to go for contradictory, mutually exclusive origins for the Aqua Teens, whoever, the truth does not seem muddled enough.
The Mooninites, one of the most popular side characters play a role that seems tacked on tangential; nothing wrong with that in principle, but in practice their presence seems hollow. (That’s not to say they don’t get some fun lines.) Some other characters get some short screen presence, but it would be keen to see a reprisal of some old favorites, such as Romulax or Boxy Brown (seen, but sadly, not heard).
Oh, and it’s worth staying through the credits. There’s, um, something at the end.