Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Smashing Pumpkins with the Monsters

Dreamworks' Monsters vs Aliens: Mutant Pumpkins from Outer Space attacked the airwaves tonight, and while it wasn't as screamingly good as the MvA movie was this summer, it was good enough to warrant a spot on the annual Hallowe'en TV special roster.

The story opens with a UFO dumping some sort of goo onto a pumpkin patch just before Hallowe'en. Ginormica, BOB, Dr. Cockroach, Link and Insectosaurus (or whatever the big guy's called now that he's fluttering around on wings, Heimlich-style) are called in to save the day when the gourds sprout limbs, attitudes, and a hunger for junk food and go on the rampage. Hilarity ensues.

Or, at least it's supposed to. Mutant Pumpkins was cute, and it certainly tried hard to bring the movie's style of humour into this half-hour production, but most of the jokes fell a little flat.

Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a bad follow-up. The bit about the slight against BOB's mother had me howling. It's just that there weren't quite enough jokes that worked.

This installment did keep with the tradition of referencing plenty of other films. Most were pretty obvious, but, without giving anything away, I have to wonder if the final scene was a deliberate allusion to the execrable 50's flick Invasion of the Star Creatures for those of us who really know our cinematic cheese, or perhaps to The Thing from Another World if they were trying for something more well known and vastly more watchable.

As you would expect, the special also delivers on a good fight scene, and the animation is top-notch.

In the end, Monsters vs Aliens: Mutant Pumpkins from Outer Space was enough of a treat to make it worth watching next year.

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