Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Mutant Mayhem Movie Review: After the two disastrous Michael Bay-produced TMNT films, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem feels like a godsend for the franchise. Taking it back to its animation roots and providing a story that actually focuses on the turtles being teenagers, Mutant Mayhem understands the weird appeal that comes with TMNT, and that overall just makes the film a charming and cute watch with some of the best animation you will see on the big screen this year. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Mutant Mayhem: Seth Rogen and Jeff Rowe Made Sure That Their Animation Team Wasn't Overworked While Making the Film.

Directed by Jeff Rowe from a script by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem sees the titular group yearn to be accepted by humans who unfortunately shun them for being monsters. To prove themselves as heroes and have a shot at a normal life, the TMNT sets out on a hunt for a criminal group alongside April O’Neil – a high school news reporter – only to find themselves in a heap of trouble when an army of mutant monsters are unleashed upon them.

A Still From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (Photo Credits: Paramount Pictures)

The group of Leonardo (Nicolas Cantu), Raphael (Brady Noon), Michelangelo (Shamon Brown Jr), and Donatello (Micah Abbey) was unquestionably the key component that made Mutant Mayhem function so well. You've never seen the TMNT like this, and Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's script succeeds in making them seem like teenagers while keeping a core element that closely resembles the source material.

The Turtles have different personalities brought to them by the voice actors portraying them, and the children do an amazing job of embracing their roles. It has a coming-of-age theme wrapped around some mutant turtles just trying to fit in with society and in that it strikes a wonderful balance between the heroic elements and the rest of the aspects.

Watch the Trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Mutant Mayhem:

Where most comic book films or even shows struggle with this, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem makes the heroics a central viewpoint that doesn’t necessarily undermine its coming-of-age concepts. That was definitely a given considering Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg understand what makes the concept of growing up special, as was seen even in Superbad.

What Mutant Mayhem also understands is the weirdness that TMNT brings along with itself. There are gross and grotesque creatures in this world, and the animation does a brilliant job with putting that look forward. New York has never looked this distinctive in animation, with each frame having a captivating visual quality that keeps your attention. It’s like a blend of CG animation and hand-drawn concoctions that Spider-Verse proposed., only now there is a bit of weirdness to it that helps visualise that style.

A Still From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (Photo Credits: Paramount Pictures)

The group of Leonardo (Nicolas Cantu), Raphael (Brady Noon), Michelangelo (Shamon Brown Jr), and Donatello (Micah Abbey) was unquestionably the key component that made Mutant Mayhem function so well. You've never seen the TMNT like this, and Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's script succeeds in making them seem like teenagers while keeping a core element that closely resembles the source material.

The Turtles have different personalities brought to them by the voice actors portraying them, and the children do an amazing job of embracing their roles. It has a coming-of-age theme wrapped around some mutant turtles just trying to fit in with society and in that it strikes a wonderful balance between the heroic elements and the rest of the aspects.

Watch the Trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Mutant Mayhem:

Where most comic book films or even shows struggle with this, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem makes the heroics a central viewpoint that doesn’t necessarily undermine its coming-of-age concepts. That was definitely a given considering Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg understand what makes the concept of growing up special, as was seen even in Superbad.

What Mutant Mayhem also understands is the weirdness that TMNT brings along with itself. There are gross and grotesque creatures in this world, and the animation does a brilliant job with putting that look forward. New York has never looked this distinctive in animation, with each frame having a captivating visual quality that keeps your attention. It’s like a blend of CG animation and hand-drawn concoctions that Spider-Verse proposed., only now there is a bit of weirdness to it that helps visualise that style.

A Still From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (Photo Credits: Paramount Pictures)

The villains embrace that visual style too with Superfly (Ice Cube) and his cronies like Bebop (Seth Rogen), Rocksteady (John Cena), Mondo Gecko (Paul Rudd) and more just being these ugly creatures that feel interesting to watch on screen. Trump that in alongside a convincing reason for them to start their villainy, and you have a winner on your hands. Additionally, Jackie Chan’s Splinter and Ayo Edebiri’s April O’Neil are great additions too that elevate an already fun story.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem does lose itself however when it tries to set up its eventual sequel. The addition of TCRI, a research group that wants to take away the turtles’ blood to create more mutants, falls flat. They feel like sequel-bait and I wished there was a more authentic addition of them. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Mutant Mayhem Review: Seth Rogen's Animated Movie Gets a Big Thumbs Up from Critics, Call the Film 'Unapologetically Weird' and 'Hugely Entertaining'.

A Still From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (Photo Credits: Paramount Pictures)

The film is hilarious with jokes and pop-culture references (a TMNT staple) just oozing through in every scene. It’s a film with a lot of heart that is elevated by the synth and piano based score of Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross – the duo never disappoints with Mutant Mayhem just being a further proof of that. In a year where animation has really thrived, TMNT: Mutant Mayhem makes another great addition to that list.

Final Thoughts

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem serves as a love letter to its inspiration, just as Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse did for Spider-Man. The film really revels in the coming-of-age aspects that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s script brings, and Jeff Rowe's direction elevates this animated production so well that you'll want to learn more about the TMNT mythos after watching it. It’s a great animated flick that definitely delivers. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem releases in India on September 1, 2023.

Rating:4.0

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Aug 31, 2023 09:59 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).