Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
US, 89 min
Director: David Soren
Writers: Nicholas Stoller, David Soren, from a novel by Dav Pilkey
Cast: Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Nick Kroll, Thomas Middleditch, Kristen Schaal
As a father of three young daughters I am forced to watch many awful kids movies, this wasn’t one of them. I actually enjoyed this movie. The animation isn’t great, and I don’t really care for Kevin Harts brand of humor, but this worked for me.
I never read the books, so I went into this movie completely blind. The story kicks off with two young boys, George and Harold, telling the origin story of their creation “Captain Underpants.” You find out that George and Harold met in kindergarten and immediately hit it off. George is a storyteller and Harold is an artist, and they share an affinity for potty humor. The film is never far from the next fart joke, but they are surprisingly endearing.
I have several quibbles with the movie, and the biggest of which is the animation. This, to me, has the feel of a direct-to-video/made for tv movie. I’m guessing that is because of the way the books are drawn, but it misses the mark for me. The one way that the animation does succeed is when the story changes to a flip book style because you realize that this is all from the POV of 2 children.
It isn’t all potty humor here, there are some touching moments about the importance of friendship, and how loneliness causes heartache and sometimes grumpy behavior towards others. This film has surprising heart, and some mindless humor. Adults with children can enjoy this movie, but I would wait for VOD or Redbox.