I figured I had grown out of the humour of SpongeBob. Having watched the series and the first film mainly due to my kids loving it (honest!), I thought that the sequel would be a bit hit and miss. Surely the jokes would have worn thin by now. Absolutely not.
All is well in Bikini Bottom. The crusty clam is doing great business until Plankton (Mr Lawrence) launches another attack in an attempt to steal the secret recipe of the Krabby Pate. In the ensuing fight, the formula disappears into thin air. SpongeBob (Tom Kenny) and Plankton are blamed for the loss and as Bikini Bottom descends into anarchy. They have to find a way to cooperate to try to retrieve the formula. Meanwhile, a mysterious pirate, Burger Beard (Antonio Banderas) is on the trail of a magical book which he needs to make his fortune.
This film is a real riot. It is packed full of jokes and references that kids of all ages will love. It moves along at a terrific pace and the comedy comes thick and fast. It is a film of two parts. The first is the hand drawn animated part set below the waves in the same style as the television series. The second half sees the principal cast as CGI creations, on dry land, having been transported there by a mystical dolphin (Matt Berry). The first half works best as it is set under the sea and it sees the town of Bikini Bottom transformed from a haven to a post apocalyptic nightmare in an instant.
The way that the film works is in the care and attention to the story and the script. As I noted before, it is so full of jokes. It is almost non stop but doesn’t require an intimate knowledge of the characters to enjoy them. When the town changes after the recipe is lost there is a direct reference to Mad Max II: Road Warrior as the locals all suddenly start wearing leather and everything is alight. In addition to that there are clever and humorous nods towards 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Shining, A Clockwork Orange, Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park and probably a host of other movies I didn’t pick up on.
Overall, a fantastically funny movie from start to finish. Enjoy it with relish.