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Movie review: 'Ninja Turtles' reboot too chaotic and violent

Published August 7, 2014 5:54 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Those masked green vigilantes are back in "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," a ridiculously plotted and distressingly violent action movie that never makes the case for its own existence.

In this fifth movie based on the '70s comic book, TV reporter April O'Neil (Megan Fox) aims to get footage of the nasty Foot Gang that's terrorizing New York. She stumbles upon the Turtles, four pizza-loving, martial-arts-savvy young fighters that she remembers from her childhood — when she rescued them and their rat mentor, Splinter, from her father's burning genetics lab. The Turtles become targets of the Foot Gang, along with the billionaire Eric Sacks (William Fichtner) and Sacks' mentor, the evil Master Shredder (Tohoru Masamune).

Director Jonathan Liebesman ("Wrath of the Titans") is also under the influence of an evil mentor, producer Michael Bay, and the movie echoes the idiotic overkill of Bay's "Transformers" movies. The chaotic script also assumes too much of the viewers, like that everybody knows which Turtle is which based on their color-coded masks — thus negating the reason for rebooting the franchise in the first place.

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'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles'

Opens Friday, Aug. 8, at theaters everywhere; rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence; 101 minutes.