The Simpsons Movie manages to stay true to its television roots with off the wall hi-jinks and a familiar cast from everyone’s favorite fictional town. With 18 seasons under its belt, it would be a challenge to find someone who has not seen a single episode of the cartoon family. In fact, the main draw of this movie is the fact that it is, well, The Simpsons but 3x longer. Come to think of it, the trailer and TV commercials had nothing to do with the plot but captured the slapstick Simpsons-esque humor.
As I entered the theater I had no idea what was going to take place during the hour and a half running time but that didn’t really matter. In true Simpsons style, the story is set-up quickly through a series of random and seemingly unconnected events. Throughout the film the characters poke fun at everything from the government to the FOX network and even the idea that they are making a movie with the same stuff everyone has been enjoying for free on tv for the past 18 years.
Going from the TV screen to the silver screen did change a few things. For one thing, the movie is a bit edgier with some sort-of kind-of nudity, slightly harsher language, and a little more violence than you would normally see on the network TV version. But those things are what make the movie a movie, the freedom to push the content further with greater freedom of expression. The look also departed from the typical 2D animation to a more 2.5D cinematic cartoon. At first this look was a bit uncomfortable, but it grew on me through out the movie.
The bottom line is if you have ever been a fan of The Simpsons you will definitely want to see the movie. Those who don’t really like or understand The Simpsons are better off just skipping it since it captures the same aspects that everyone has come to love from the TV show. Besides, if you are not a big Simpsons fan then you will miss a lot of the inside jokes that make it that much funnier. If you do go, sit through the credits as there are a few extra little scenes sprinkled throughout.
I give the Simpsons Movie two thumbs up, 5/5 stars, 10/10, whatever the rating system is mostly because I am a big fan of the Simpsons in general. The film kept me laughing and managed to avoid being a half-assed theatrical port of a great television series.