DVD review: A Turtle's Tale: Sammy's Adventure
A Turtle's Tale: Sammy's Adventure (U) Blu-ray (3D +2D) (& DVD) 3 booms
In a huge animated ocean full of large beasts – Disney and Pixar to name but two – it makes it that little bit more difficult to be a little indie fish. Hoping to make some kind of splash is this cutesy adventure.
When Sammy (Yuri Lowenthal) pops out of his egg, he somehow manages to get left behind from all the other baby turtles. He has a brief meeting with another whipper snapper Shelly, but they lose track of each other due to some pesky seagulls.
Sammy finds himself on a battered raft, floating off to sea. It's not long before he's introduced to Ray, another turtle, who he quickly befriends. Soon after though, they too find themselves separated, leaving Sammy on his lonesome.
It's not long before Sammy finds himself in various sea-faring adventures, which he hopes will lead him to meet the mate of his life. But there's a small chance that they may have already crossed currents before...
When the likes of Disney and Pixar are releasing features that are quickly considered modern classics, it's understandable that the animated bar is held at an incredibly high level. However, despite a brave attempt, Sammy and his aquatic chums fall some way short of reaching anywhere near it.
Many an animated flick can get away with a simple story, but they soon sink if they don't have engaging characters. Although the characters here look pretty enough, the dialogue they have to work with would be deemed condescending to a bunch of five year olds.
On top of that the voice acting is atrocious on every level. The so-called talent involved put on appallingly bad accents in a vague hope that it will equate to also having a sparkling personality. It doesn't. They sound like costumed characters in a dodgy children's series being broadcast on a channel that nobody watches, completely devoid of charm or personality.
There are also a few awkward attempts at making its young target audience aware of some of the environmental issues facing sea life today; sadly they feel so crow-barred in, as if to meet a government quota of information forced upon them.
It's a shame as the animation has a real vibrancy in places. It's not in the same league as Disney and Co. (probably a good 20,000 less, at least), but is bright and funky enough to keep the attention span of a young audience throughout. This is definitely increased if you have a 3D home entertainment set-up, which will easily delight young and old alike.
A Turtle's Tale will certainly do the trick if you want to stick your kids in front of it giving you a welcome break to do something more fun instead. But if you're looking for something to sit down and enjoy with all the family, this particular tale is just too much of a damp squid; if that's the case you may be better off avoiding little Sammy and try Finding Nemo instead.
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