Fredís No Clue Movie Review

"Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over"
Directed by Robert Rodriguez

This is the third and final film in the Spy Kids series. The films follow the exploits of pint size spys whose entire family works for the OSS. In this film, Carmen, played by Alexa Vega, and Juni, played by Daryl Sabara, are thrown into a virtual reality video game called Game Over. The game has been created by the Toymaker, played by Sylvester Stallone, and its mission is to enslave the worldís youth by taking over their minds at the end of the game.  

This is definitely not a great movie. It does play as a nice family film and Iím assuming thatís why itís doing so well at the box office. The roles of the parents, played by Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino, have been greatly reduced in this movie. You donít really miss them that much, if youíre already a fan of the franchise. This movie is about the kids. Actually, Rodriguez has made Juni the central figure in this film. In the beginning, heís almost like a Desperado character. He has left the OSS and become a private eye. The plot of the movie is extremely thin and without all the effects wouldnít hold up at all. Many of the effects are extremely cheesy and arenít up to todayís standards of special effects.

All that said, hereís the good things about Spy Kids 3-D. First of all, itís in 3-D. That is fun in itself. Yes, the effects are very cheesy, right down to the large signs in the movie, alerting you to take your glasses on and off. The effects although cheesy, are extremely inventive. Literally, I havenít seen anything like these Spy Kids films. The characters are just imaginative. I read that Rodriguez did the effects at his own studio in Austin, Texas, called Troublemaker Studios. He also shot on the same HD 3-D rig created by James Cameron for Ghosts of the Abyss.

Stallone is hilarious and makes fun of many of his own personas in the film. Ricardo Montalban gets an expanded role in this film as the grandfather. Heís a lot of fun to watch. The other kid actors did a fine job, considering more than half of this film had to have been shot on a green screen. Rodriguez manages to bring back just about every character that has been seen in the previous films and these are some fun cameo appearances.  

I canít recommend this movie as a good movie. But if you like 3-D, itís a good 3-D movie. There are virtually non-stop 3-D gimmicks throughout the movie. I say EMBRACE THE CHEESE of the movie and go see it. Youíll have fun.

Now, a quick personal note. Robert Rodriguez is one of my indie heroes. He is attempting to position his career similar to George Lucas. He does a lot of the work on his own. He has immense creative freedoms and has had it since the beginning. He made El Mariachi from nothing and has been working steadily since. You can tell that he loves technology and is really pushing the boundaries with the new digital technologies. More over, it appears that heís going to be able to maintain his creative freedoms due to his ability to deliver films with virtually low budgets and then be profitable. For example, Spy Kids 3-D has grossed over $80 million, but only cost about $50 million. Thatís a pretty good return for the studio and it keeps Rodriguez positioned to write, produce, direct, edit and sometimes shoot, mix sound, create music, and special effects. Itís an amazing accomplishment and Iím always interested to see what he does next. Itís a career that any independent filmmaker would love to have. I highly recommend his book, Rebel Without a Crew, which details the making of El Mariachi. Itís very inspiring. So go see the movie, if only to support this very indie spirited director.  

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