Eye For Film >> Movies >> Jimmy Neutron - Boy Genius (2001) Film Review
Jimmy Neutron - Boy Genius
Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray
Jimmy may be too clever by the square root of 2001 and have a robot pooch as a pet, but, hey, what else is fun in Retroland? The opening of the new Amusement Park?
Producer/director/writer John A Davis is an original animator, working out of Dallas, Texas, who makes commercial projects for his company, DNA Prods, as well as movie shorts like The Tale Of Nipploless Nippleby and straight-to-video faves, such as Super Duper Eco Troopers. After winning awards for a short, Johnny Quasar, writer/director/stand up comic Steve Oedekerk (Ace Ventura: Pet Detective) suggested that they expand it into a full length feature, with the result that Johnny became Jimmy and Oedekerk's off-the-wall humour was incorporated into Davis's 3-D visuals.
Retroland is a time-warped Fifties suburban backwash. There are modern accoutrements - sort of - which don't include sophisticated space craft. These kids fly to the stars in big toys that might have been designed in Sid's room (Toy Story). There is a surreal imagination at work here that creates a satellite out of a toaster and eggy aliens who have a king (Patrick Stewart) with a plummy English accent and a camp sense of irony, as well as a manic First Minister (Martin Short), called Ooblar.
When Jimmy (Debi Derryberry) and his mates - a collection of pre-teen misfits - slip off to the Amusement Park, aliens abduct their parents. After an orgy of play food and obese behaviour, the kids wake up to a momless world of cuddless anarchy and tummy aches. Jimmy decides to lead a rescue party and save the grown ups from brainwashed slavery on some grungy planet.
Jimmy's smart. In his spare time he invents invisible hamsters and plants that eat girls and soda pop that makes you burp. What's nice about him is that he's not a show-off, he's a pal. He knows he's small and it bothers him. He cares enough to feel the barbs.
Although the animation is capable of Shrek-like quality, Davis keeps to a three dimensional cartoony style. Jimmy's mom's hair is a sculptured bob, resolutely solid and never going to tangle in a gale. As for Jimmy, he's like an ice cream cone, with a twirly fudge top.
Boy genius? Certainly, someone you want to meet again.Reviewed on: 21 Mar 2002