The Simpsons Movie
Fells like an extended episode, but few laughs
Based on the longest running animated series in the history of US television, we get to see the famed residents of "Springfield, USA" say and do things that they can't do because of FCC regulations which govern US television.
"Marge Simpson" (voiced by Julie Kavner) becomes worried that the end of the world is near when her senile father-in-law, "Grampa Simpson" (Dan Castellaneta) recites a cryptic message during the church service they attended.
After her dim-witted husband, "Homer" (voiced by Castellaneta) brings home a pig, which he saved from slaughter after it was used in a "Krusty Burger" restaurant commercial, it appears that the prediction "Grampa" spouted in his "senior moment," as "Homer" coined it, was coming true.
In typical "Homer" fashion, he contaminates "Springfield Lake" instead of getting rid of the pig waste container he haphazardly built properly. But, can you blame him for not wanting a free donut?
The Environmental Protection Agency, under orders of "President Schwarzenegger" (voiced by Castellaneta), places a glass dome over the town without a state (which is a long-running joke in the TV series), and basically wipes "Springfield" off the map. However, the residents of the town have to fend for themselves as the town resources rapidly dwindle. Leaving the town in more chaos than one of "Homer's" schemes.
This movie has the feel of a 90-minute movie of the TV series, with some subtle differences. First, we get a modified opening sequence which features more than just the "Simpson" family. In the opening sequence, we only get one joke that appears in every episode's opening -- "Bart" (voiced by Nancy Cartwight) writing on his classroom's chalk board a funny line ("I WILL NOT ILLEGALLY DOWNLOAD THIS MOVIE" in this case). We also get some unique animation not seen in the TV show. Here, we get some shadows cast by the characters. We also get some computer-generated scenes inserted into traditional scenes for some camera pans that couldn't be done with the traditional animation the show uses.
Because this is a movie for the silver screen, this movie gets away with a lot more thing that they wouldn't on television. One thing this movie has is frontal male nudity briefly during an incident with "Bart". You also get swearing by one of the major characters, which you never hear in the series (something interrupts the swearing on the TV series).
One thing this movie absolutely fails to do is keep the laughs going. In 90-minutes, I laughed at least five times. Out of all those laughs, I probably laughed out loud maybe three times. A lot of fans and critics have said that the show, as of late, has declined in quality. If you ask me, the show's poor quality lately really shows in the movie. They tried too hard to produce a laugh from the audience, and it seriously shows.
Another problem with this movie is that they tried to give 320 characters seen in the show some on-camera time. And less than 2% of those characters get any lines. To make things worse, they shoehorned the majority of the 320 characters into an angry mob scene.
The movie's musical score is completely forgettable. All I can recall hearing is music heard in the TV series. They even had the popular punk rock group, Green Day appear in the movie. However, we don't hear them perform one of their songs, we get them performing their version of the lyric-less "Simpsons" theme music.
This movie is targeted to the fans of the show. They do not attempt to bring in a new audience at all. I've seen some episodes of the series, but none of the episodes aired just prior to and immediately after the movie's release. If they tried to keep the movie in continuity to the show, I have no clue.
I can not recommend this movie unless you are a die-hard fan of the series.