"Too Dark and Edgy"
What You Need To Know:
Parts of THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE retain some of the goofy humor and innocence of the TV series. The rest of the movie, however, contains at least a couple instances of crude humor, scary sequences, and a weird ending where Spongebob uses magic rays to solve the plot problem. The scene where Spongebob and Patrick get drunk on ice cream is also distasteful. In the process, the filmmakers have almost destroyed the innocent charm and wacky wit of the TV series. Regrettably, therefore, MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for older children for the SPONGEBOB movie.
(Pa, O, H, Ho, BB, C, L, VV, S, N, AA, M) Mixed pagan worldview, hero uses magical device to solve the plot problem and dumb character thinks fishbowl glass is some kind of psychic energy, with some humanist elements, and cross-dressing homosexual joke when hero’s sidekick wears fishnet stockings during rock song, as well as some moral and redemptive elements where hero risks his life to save boss who failed to give him a promotion, plus tyranny, injustice, greed, mind control, and harsh punishments rebuked; one use of the word “butt” and character says, “Lord knows”; strong cartoon violence with some scary scenes and slapstick humor, such as killer fish repeatedly threatens hero and his sidekick with death, characters in seedy bar threaten hero and his friend and then fight among each other; large fish tries to eat hero and his sidekick, hero and sidekick venture into scary trench, large fish has booby trap surrounded by mounds of skulls, king zaps character with trident to freeze him, hero and sidekick almost suffocate on dry land, and magic power zaps helmets used to control fish characters; cross dressing joke where hero’s sidekick wears fishnet stockings during rock song and stupid sidekick has crush on mermaid, asking her if she’d like to see his underwear; rear male nudity in two scenes, including one scene where character sticks a lollipop stick between his buttocks; characters act drunk after they eat too much ice cream at ice cream parlor counter; no smoking or drugs; and, stealing by villain, villain wants to control the world, and tyranny, injustice, greed, mind control, and harsh punishments rebuked.
SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS has become a beloved experience on TV for children, teenagers and adults, but the filmmakers of the movie have decided to make the first SPONGEBOB movie racier, darker and more “edgy” than the television incarnation. In the process, they have almost destroyed the childlike charm and wacky wit of the TV series.
The movie opens with Spongebob Squarepants, a hyperactive yellow sponge who acts like a wacky child, dreaming that his boss at the Krusty Krab, Mr. Krabs, has made him manager of the new Krusty Krab restaurant. Spongebob wakes up and gets ready for the ceremony where Mr. Krabs will name the new manager.
Instead, the promotion goes to Spongebob’s cranky co-worker, Squidword Tentacles. Depressed, Spongebob still meets his friend, Patrick, a pink starfish who’s not too bright, at their favorite ice cream parlor, Goofy Goober’s. There, they get drunk on gobs of ice cream. In the morning, a still drunken Spongebob decides to tell off his boss, Mr. Krabs.
Meanwhile, the crown of King Neptune, the merman ruler of Bikini Bottom, is missing. All evidence points to Mr. Krabs, who allegedly sold the crown to someone at Shell City. Spongebob doesn’t help when he berates his boss in front of the king. Spongebob quickly sobers up, however. He and Patrick volunteer to save the life of Mr. Krabs by traveling to Shell City and bringing back Neptune’s crown. Their courage and innocence sustains them, even though no one has ever returned from Shell City alive.
Parts of THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE retain some of the goofy humor of the TV series. For instance, the plot to steal King Neptune’s crown and blame it on Mr. Krabs is engineered by the diminutive, one-eyed Plankton, owner of the Chum Bucket and business rival of Mr. Krabs. This time, Plankton not only wants the secret recipe for the Krabby Patty, he also wants to take over the world!
The rest of the movie, however, contains at least a couple instances of crude humor, scary sequences (such as a desert of skulls from victims of a large fish hiding under a rock), and a weird ending where Spongebob uses magical rays to solve the plot problem. The scene where Spongebob and Patrick get drunk on ice cream is also distasteful.
Ultimately, THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE is disappointing because of the filmmakers’ attempt to aim at an older audience. This seems to be a mistake that many filmmakers make when trying to adapt a children’s story to the big screen. Regrettably, therefore, MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for older children for the SPONGEBOB movie.