Hey guys it’s Sam, and I don’t have time to watch a lot of movies on my own time, but I do watch a lot of movies as a class. And one of those was what our class finished in—what seems to be a questionable spot—Spanish class. So yes, the movie was in Spanish, but with English subtitles. And this is a movie I honestly question sometimes about the horrible cases of negativity it received (but then again, the director’s past movies have apparently been bad as well). It’s a rather “true blue” movie that splits two worlds conjoined by one adventure…this movie is The Smurfs, or Los Pitufos in Spanish.
You may know The Smurfs (based off of the Belgian comic series of the same name, alongside its eponymous TV show) as the competition against Cowboys vs. Aliens, both of the movies releasing on the same day. You might remember how the true blue flick lost by just $0.8 million! You might remember how critics and audiences had different perspectives of the movie in negative and positive ways. But we’re here to learn about what I had to say about it. Let’s start off with the story: Papa, Grouchy, Brainy, Clumsy, Gutsy, and Smurfette end up, in a pursuit from evil wizard Gargamel and also via vortex technology, in the human world (more specifically, the Big Apple) apart from their rightful Smurf home. They then must find a way to get back home while still avoiding Gargamel and they run into humans in the process. These humans are Patrick and Grace Winslow, a husband-and-wife couple with a basset hound named Elway. These two merge and learn the benefits of teamwork, leadership, and bravery on the Smurfs’ wild adventure.
The movie actually wasn’t half bad. I don’t know why critics had their usual lip to set on the movie, since it was polar opposite of what it critically received. The movie was inspiring, adventurous (you know I love a good cliffhanger and hero-gets-tortured and beat-up-the-bad-guy scene), epic, and actually quite funny. To add into that, the movie was also full of great messages like leadership and teamwork and putting others first. And for a movie about a bunch of three-apples-high little blue dwarfs running around the NYC looking like obnoxious Na’vi offspring dwarfs (no offense), that’s saying something.
1 3/4 out of 5 – Educational value – The movie is meant for amusement only, but the Smurfs do teach kids about teamwork, while Papa Smurf and the Winslows teach about the importance of putting family first.
3 out of 5 – Positive messages – The Smurfs offer positive messages about cooperation, teamwork, and family togetherness. Clumsy Smurf’s transformation into a fearless hero in the end (spoiler alert) is a great lesson that none of us is just “one thing,” even if that’s what we’re most known for by our friends and family.
2 1/2 out of 5 – Positive role models – Grace is kind and helpful, even though the Smurfs frighten her at first. Papa always thinks of his fellow Smurfs first, and then himself. The other Smurfs are optimistic and sweet, and Patrick even learns fatherly duties from Papa Smurf.
3 3/4 out of 5 – Ease of view – The Smurfs is a great movie that teaches kids about what it feels like to work as a team and put others before you, although not all the spots of the movie are bright ones. Despite getting the critical hammer lowered on it, and despite losing a rather fierce competition, The Smurfs is a cleverly plotted flick that mixes humor, adventure, and good messages all in one great combo.
4 out of 5 – Violence – Gallons of pratfall and cartoonish violence, but it does get more serious in the clutches of Gargamel, the film’s villain who is always trying to capture the Smurfs. Gargamel’s cat Azrael almost always gets thrown into danger’s path, with his master asking “Are you dead?” to see if he made it. The Smurfs and Gargamel end up in a cat-and-mouse pursuing in a shop, and they find each other once more in the climax’s epic battle which results in some injuries, but blood and/or death is out of the question. Azrael coughs up a clump of Smurfette’s hair in a graphic style that may disturb some viewers. Papa Smurf “takes one for the team” and stays behind to be captured by Gargamel and have “essence” extracted from him in a rather torturous scene. Gargamel also uses wand magic to capture Smurfs and flash a spell into the sky Voldemort-style. He also gets hit by a bus, but does not die. A sequence that might frighten the very young occurs in which Gargamel terrorizes Smurf Village and destroys many upon many of Smurf homes. A vision predicts that Clumsy will mess everything up by failing to catch a wand.
1 3/4 out of 5 – Inappropriate Content – The Winslows show affection—holding hands, embracing, and finally kissing (twice)—in short-and-sweet manners. Smurfette stands over a subway grate Marilyn Manson-style, but her “brothers” are more interested in the breeze, one even flashing his butt as an “enchanted forest.” One Smurf flashes his boxers before jumping into the portal back home. Grace is pregnant.
2 out of 5 – Language – The word “smurf” is used frequently as a substitute for many other words (like how Finn and Jake use this same formula for the word “math”), the results including “Smurf off”, “You smurfin’ crossed the wrong smurf”, and “Smurf me”, among other clean words like “smurfabunga” and “hypersmurfilating”. Real live words that rank on the colorful-language list include “oh my God” and briefly “d-mn”.
3 1/2 out of 5 – Product Placement – It’s not a surprise that the consumerism levels are literally flowing through the roofs, with appearances like the Blue Man Group, NBC’s Community (it’s true), Samsung Blu-Ray, Apple Inc., M&M’s, Aerosmith Guitar Hero, CBGB, Bluetooths, FAO Schwarz, ALEX toys, Madame Alexander dolls, and references to Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl” (which is coincidental due to the fact that Katy provides the voice of Smurfette) and Braveheart.
Smarts: B+ (3.5 points)
See-Again Ratio: A- (4 points)
Fun: A (4 points)
Entertainment: A (4 points)
Humor: A (4 points)
Style: B (3 points)
FINAL SCORE: 26.5 out of 30 (I did not see that coming), 3 stars out of 5, 77% out of 100%
CONSENSUS: It may not shine as brightly as advertised, but The Smurfs is a diverse movie with the humor, adventure, and positive messages to make it worthwhile, but it honestly can’t be saved from its sometimes blunt expectations.
PRICE: You sure you wanna go all true and all blue? See what I did there, I made the word blue. Anyway, The Smurfs costs $20 with a 44% savings addition. Too outrageous for you? $8.50 is the narrowed-down new price, while $7 is the used price. Take your pick, and if you can’t, go to Blockbuster where you can buy the movie new for $24, or have it for a solid 7 days with the weekly rental price of $5. And if you can’t accept that, well…I don’t think you can trust me anymore, can you?
Like, rate, comment, and sing that Smurf song to the subscribe button until it explodes of annoyance overload! And stay tuned for more awesome stuff on Sammwak! Can you believe it? It’s already Valentine’s Day! ❤ Sorry for a little late delay, but you know what that meant: more awesomeness!