In honour of The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl being released exactly 17 years ago on June 10, 2005, I decided to give this childhood classic a rewatch. Look, I’m not going to be critiquing this movie in this review; objectively, it’s not exactly Oscar-worthy material. But if you’re like me and you watched this as a child on YTV, its nostalgia will remind you of the days when cheap, colourful movies were enough to entertain you. I mean, these two were my first introduction to the superhero genre – not Spiderman, not Superman, but Sharkboy and Lavagirl. So, I thought it’d be fun to revisit this movie and give it a quick review (yes, I sat through all 93 minutes of it).
The first thing I noticed – wow, we must’ve had a really good tolerance for bad CGI back when we were kids. This movie is an absolute CGI fest and it really looks as if it came straight out of a kid’s dream (although I can’t say I ever had dreams like that). But I can see why we enjoyed this as kids, it’s flashy, bright, and above all else, it’s got kids with super powers. Who didn’t dream about that as a kid? Now do the visuals actually look good? Okay, no, BUT I do like how they just really went for it and fully embraced the movie being weird and chaotic. It’s a mess but…I guess you could say it’s a planned one.
And for a movie that’s mainly starring child actors, the performances are exactly what you’d expect. Of course back then I didn’t care about things like the screenplay or the actor’s performances, so I don’t remember thinking this movie was extremely cheesy or awkward. I do want to give a quick shout out to Taylor Lautner though because he was so adorable as Sharkboy and I have to say, his martial arts skills are quite impressive. While most of the film is slathered in CGI, his fight skills were one of the few things that were real. I do also remember really loving Lavagirl’s character and during this rewatch, I could still see why. She’s sweet and gentle, but also fierce and strong. Together, they make a solid superhero duo.
For what it’s worth, the story does feel incredibly innocent and sweet and I think it’s very relatable for children. I’m sure we’ve already tried to escape reality by venturing into our dreams and fantasies when we were young (still do). Watching this as an adult now, I’m definitely noticing how cringey the plot and writing is, but to whoever crafted Max’s response to “They [Sharkboy and Lavagirl] asked if I could go with them” with “I said I can’t I have school tomorrow”, hats off to you. Best line in the movie.
This was definitely the most random watch for me in 2022 so far, and while I don’t think I’ll be watching this again any time soon, it did feel nice indulging in something so nostalgic and just pure fun. I don’t think I’m going to give this movie any rating since I just watched it simply for enjoyment. Instead, what I hope this review does for you is that it reminds you to revisit some of your favourite childhood classics from time to time – you’ll be surprised by how happy it’ll make you. 🙂
Yep, watching a movie just for fun can be great 🙂
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