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Turbo (2013)

  PG Closed Captioning

David Soren

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Plot Summary

From the creators of Madagascar and Kung Fu Panda comes the biggest — and funniest — animated adventure of the year! Along with his streetwise snail crew and new human friends, Turbo, an underdog snail, takes on the biggest challenge ever to make their dreams come true.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews

TOMATOMETER

67%
  • Reviews Counted: 105
  • Fresh: 70
  • Rotten: 35
  • Average Rating: 6.1/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Honestly, they pretty much had me at "racing snails." – Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, Jul 17, 2013

Rotten: After the originality of the hero, the filmmakers borrow too heavily from other movies; the similarities to "Ratatouille" and "Cars" are almost distracting. – Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle, Jul 22, 2013

Fresh: DreamWorks' 3-D confection ... featuring Ryan Reynolds as a garden-trolling slowpoke who dreams of Indianapolis 500 glory. – Tom Russo, Boston Globe, Jul 17, 2013

Fresh: A sort-of escargot-meets-"Cars" adventure, it has some sharp vocal turns and remains fun even when its inventiveness runs out of gas. – Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News, Jul 17, 2013

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Racing Snails? Sign Me Up!

"Turbo," DreamWorks Animation's latest cinematic story, isn't the studio's best film ("How to Train Your Dragon"), nor is it its worst ("Shark Tale"), but rather, it's a middle-of-the-road adventure with a predictable underdog tale we've seen before in other films (Pixar's "Ratatouille," for example). Still, this high-speed snail adventure ends up riding high on the sheer strength of its hilarious, charming characters and zany, off-the-wall humor. What it lacks in originality and surprise, "Turbo" more than makes up for in gleefully energetic entertainment. One of the best things about the movie, by far, is its all-star comic voice cast. Ryan Reynolds as the titular character is even more enjoyable to watch here than he was in "The Croods" earlier this year. Hearing his deep, serious voice come out of an animated snail's mouth is simply amusing in itself. The rest of the cast is also terrific, including Paul Giamatti as Turbo's worrywart brother and Bill Hader as a rival human formula car racer. Even the flick's streetwise snail crew - which includes Samuel L. Jackson, Snoop Dogg, and Maya Rudolph - is goofily entertaining. But the funniest (and most memorable) character is undoubtedly Ken Jeong's Kim Ly, a smart-mouthed nail salon owner with some outrageously hysterical scenes. Characters aside, the movie also nicely excels in the animation department with its bright colors, action-packed racing sequences, constantly amusing slapstick gags. But of course, "Turbo" does suffer, quite frequently, from its share of problems. For one, this story is just kinda bland and uninspired. I mean, we already know what's gonna happen at every turn, and how the film will inevitably end, so it probably wouldn't have hurt if the filmmakers did something more with the plot to liven it up. But then again, this is a movie about a talking snail who races in the Indy 500, so I guess I shouldn't have expected too much. There's also a ton of bad, groan-worthy snail puns scattered throughout the script, but at least they don't take away from the fun action and heartfelt message of the plot. All in all, "Turbo" may not be the most original or inventive animated comedy you'll see this year, but if you wanna watch a fun flick about racing escargot, it's worth a watch. Personally, I thought it was good, but not great.

A FUN BUT SLIGHTLY FORGETTABLE ANIMATED ADVENTURE

It's nearly impossible not to compare DreamWorks Animation's "Turbo," a computer-animated kid's tale about an ordinary garden snail who dreams of becoming lightning fast, to the pantheon of Pixar's films. The one this movie most obviously resembles is "Ratatouille," about a rat who dreams of becoming a chef, but there are also a few hints of "Finding Nemo's" team-driven adventure and, of course, the fast-paced race track locale of "Cars" as well. Unfortunately, it isn't a particularly flattering comparison. Even the worst Pixar flicks ("Cars") are pretty good, and the best - like "Ratatouille" - are instant classics lovingly crafted with a kind of timeless perfection. Which is why it's probably not entirely fair to compare "Turbo" to Pixar's great works. Clearly, timeless perfection is not the goal here. Instead, director David Soren and the rest of the DreamWorks team behind the film are after something a little less ambitious, but still fun.

Judged by more modest standards, "Turbo" succeeds far better, though not entirely. It's a flick that'll appeal to young kids without making adults feel the need to escape from their seats. But few of any age will remember it a month or two from now, much less down the road, when it has raced from their memories. The movie starts with a bit of clever world-building as Theo (Ryan Reynolds), a regular garden snail, goes about his daily business in a garden factory called the Plant, where snails work slowly, very slowly, together to process tomatoes. Theo's problem is that he just doesn't fit in. He only dreams of speed - speed that the other snails, especially his brother Chet (Paul Giamatti), believe is both dangerous and just impossible to achieve. Before long, however, Theo's dream comes true when he's accidentally pulled into the supercharged engine of a drag racer - giving him a variety of radioactive powers. After being picked up by small-time taco entrepreneur Tito (Michael Peña), Theo and the still-resistant Chet end up in an L.A. strip mall where the bored shopkeepers like to race snails for entertainment. There, Theo hooks up with a crew of street-smart racing snails, led by Samuel L. Jackson's Whiplash, and - now under the name Turbo - sets his sights on his ultimate goal: racing in the Indianapolis 500.

"Turbo's" plot offers about as many surprise twists as a circular race track; most adults and children who've been to the movies before will see most, if not all the turns coming. Even so, that's not to say this flick is without its merits. The biggest pleasures come mainly from its speedy, well-animated racing sequences, as well as its giant cast of silly side characters, voiced by the likes of Luis Guzmán, Maya Rudolph, Ken Jeong, Richard Jenkins, Bill Hader, and Snoop Dogg. If anything, the supporting cast is just too big - Jackson's team of racing snails are amusing, but get far too little screen time, especially compared to Peña's Tito, who's almost too overbearing a presence. At least Jeong is there to deliver the laughs when this flick truly needs them. His sassy old lady character Kim Ly had me cracking up in my seat more times than I can even remember. As for Reynolds, he gives a smoothly charming vocal performance as Turbo, making him a sympathetic and enjoyable character to watch from start to finish.

While the movie is mostly harmless fun, it can sometimes go a little too overboard at times with its loud pop songs, grating comedic side characters, and annoying snail puns. Still, for the most part, it's consistently engaging and frequently kind of clever. The brilliant visuals are brightly colorful, the slapstick gags are often funny, and the snappy voice acting is top-notch. Sure, "Turbo" could've definitely made better use of its fun, wacky premise. But for what it is, it's a fun, energetic, and entirely predictable cartoon adventure that should keep undemanding viewers satisfied. It may not be one of DreamWorks' most memorable films, but if you enjoy talking animals and positive messages about following your dreams, it's worth a watch.

BEST MOVIE EVER!!!!!!

Watch it in theaters! It's a really awesome movie!
BEST MOVIE EVER! If you don't believe me, go watch for yourself! ( in theaters )

Turbo (2013)
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  • $14.99
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Released: 2013

Customer Ratings

Available Bundle

  1. Turbo + The Croods Double Feature, 20th Century Fox

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