Mike: I LOVE LOVE LOVE Smurfs! La-la la-la-la-la, la la-la la-la. So much so that I buy books about them and just spent 200 bucks importing a limited edition DVD box set of the first 5 seasons that just came out in Australia. (the rest of the series - seasons 6-9 - comes out in another set at the same price point in November) The Smurfs looked like it was going to be another Yogi Bear. Another Marmaduke. Another Alvin & The Chipmunks. Another Garfield. Another Scooby-Doo. Another popular nostalgic childrens property raped by Raja Gosnell or another take-your-pick shit director.
Surprise! It is! But Thank Smurf it's not as bad as all those others I just mentioned. There's a smurfload of cringe-inducing moments that make you want to hit your head against a brick wall in the hopes that you'll forget them. But there's enough cool stuff to make it worthwhile. There are some fun scenes showing the smurfs in the smurf village. And Hank Azaria is surprisingly good as Gargamel. The partly-CGI Azrael is really funny, too. It could have been so much cooler and better, but all things considered it's a disaster averted.
One of the previews was for the upcoming movie Happy Feet 2. I think this was the most awful trailer I have ever laid eyes on. I shrunk into my seat as it unfolded in front of me. Had there been a shotgun near me while watching this trailer (we were at the UA Court Street 12, so odds are there was), it would have magnetically attracted itself to my hand, which in turn would point it at my temple and pull the trigger, spraying green goop and marinara over the rest of the audience. Something tells me that I will be seeing a lot more of those retarded penguins... when I die and go to hell.
Erica: OK I went to this movie for two reasons: The Smurfs were part of my childhood. I always watched them when I was a kid and for Neil Patrick Harris. Now I knew this film was not going to be great, I went into thinking it would be awful (as you should go into films that could possibly wreck memories from your childhood). I didn't hate it but I didn't love it. It could have been MUCH worse than it was. With that said, it wasn't SMURF-ing great either.
One thing that's staggering to me is the decision to set the film in New York City. The Smurfs has been raking in lotsa dough overseas, but not nearly what it should be picking up for such a popular European property. With the announcement of Smurfs 2 coming in two years, it was mentioned that it will once again be set in the human world, again neglecting the international appeal. Wouldn't a Smurf-world-set adventure epic be so much cooler than another boring visit to Central Park. I still dream of one day seeing a live action adaptation of The Purple Smurfs.