The recent kerfuffle about the reboot of Ghostbusters (which sounds great to me) got me thinking about reboots and, well, toys. We all remember the slip-ups. Your Battleships, your GI-Joes, your endless television cartoons created just to sell toys (He-Man and My Little Pony), but it’s worth our while to take a moment to celebrate the successful adaptations. So here are a few toys-to-movies that are definitely worth watching. (In reverse order, saving the best for last).
I’ll try to stick to movies that come from properties without a built-in storyline. So Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which comes from a comic book, will not be included because there’s a storyline to use.
Sure, this was always going to be “Michael Bay prints money,” but the first one is a delightful popcorn blend with an amusing teenage-boy adventure storyline, fun toys, a cartoonish villain, and a teenage girl for him to lust after. If only they’d stopped. (Also, I am aware that I have violated my central premise for this, which is the idea that these are toys-made-into-movies rather than properties without any storylines to begin with, but it’s my list, so too bad.)
The LEGO movie
This could have been SOOO bad. But it’s great, a mix of humor and pop-culture references, with jokes for grown-ups and stuff kids like. And, of course, a tie-in line of LEGO toys that let you build, from instructions, the toys in the movie. EVERYTHING IS AWESOME.
The entire goddamn movie is quotable. Nearly every actor is notable and amazing. It’s funny without being awful or dated. Go watch it again right now. I’m going to.