Jimmy Neutron
Boy Genius

Front and centre. Jimmy and his pals face up to the evil Goobot and Ooblar
dir John A Davis
scr John A Davis, David N Weiss, J David Stem, Steve Oedekerk
voices Debi Derryberry, Patrick Stewart, Martin Short, Andrea Martin, Laraine Newman, Megan Cavanagh, Mark DeCarlo, Rob Paulsen, Carolyn Lawrence, Candi Milo, Bob Goen, Mary Hart
release US 21.Dec.01; UK 22.Mar.02
01/US 1h21

4 out of 5 stars
R E V I E W   B Y   R I C H   C L I N E
i can fix that This frenetic animated feature has an almost Simpsons-like density to its humour--every scene contains gags that work on various levels, from silly pratfall to sophisticated satire and everything in between. It barely stops to take a breath as it hurtles through its wacky plot in which the boy genius Jimmy (voice of Derryberry) and his faithful mechanical dog Goddard inadvertently contact some slimy aliens (Stewart and Short) who arrive on earth and kidnap all the tasty-looking adults, leaving Jimmy and his school pals to travel across space to rescue them.

The simplicity of the plot is deceptive, as there are all kinds of things going on here--relationships between the various students, parents, teachers and even the aliens. And visually, the film is astonishing. What the animation lacks in micro-detail (see Shrek, Monsters Inc, Ice Age), it more than makes up for in energy, inventiveness and sheer motion. We are several times placed right into the action, and the results are scary, hilarious, exhilarating. There are moments of pure cinematic joy scattered throughout this film--it's one of those rare animated features that deserves to be seen on a big screen just for the impact of its images. And there's also some clever characterisation--personal details that are actually telling and meaningful, without ever being obvious or pushy. In fact, the filmmakers even play with the touchy-feely moral at the end, giving it a funny spin while never losing the point (again, The Simpsons springs to mind). Great stuff.
some scary bits cert U 22.Feb.02

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2002 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall