FBMR - Scooby Doo
Film-Buff Movie Reviews

SCOOBY DOO (2002) ***1/2

So the critics didnít really like this movie. They probably have also lost touch with their inner child and have forgotten what cheesy fun the old Scooby Doo cartoons were (and still are on reruns). I really enjoyed this movie, much more than most of the other cartoon-turned-big-screen movies. It probably helps that I watched Scooby Doo when I was growing up, and now with digital TV, I can still watch it just about everyday.

Like most movies that were originally TV shows in the 60s-70s, this one, too, tries to modernize itself with todayís trends and such. Luckily, they donít overdo it, which I was wary about. The story was a little too complicated for a Scooby Doo mystery, but thatís to be expected because they had to fill 90 minutes of screen time rather than a 22-minute television episode. Still, most of the familiar elements were there. The gang is invited by the owner of an amusement park on Spooky Island to come investigate the mysterious transformation of the islandís college guests. They arrive ready to party, but when ready to return they have become dullards. Itís up to the gang to search for clues and find out whatís going on, and whoís behind it all.

There are some great little surprises and references to the so-called myths surrounding the Scooby Doo TV show, some that had me laughing out loud, then realizing that none of the kids in the theatre got the joke. There is enough for the kids to enjoy, enough for the Gen X/college crowd to enjoy, and enough for parents to enjoy. It was decently written with that in mind.

Matthew Lillard as Shaggy really impressed me. His voice and mannerisms were near perfect. Staying true to character, he had most of the funniest lines. Another bit of great casting was Linda Cardellini as Velma. I always felt sorry for Velma in the TV series because she was the brains of the group, but rarely got the credit she deserved. Also, that big sweater gave her the illusion of being a larger girl than she actually is. What was the message here? I was very glad to see a good-looking actress cast in her role. In fact, I find her better looking than Sarah Michelle Gellar, who plays Daphne in the movie. The only miscast, I found, was Freddie Prinze, Jr. as Freddie. Nothing against Prinze, Jr., but I didnít believe him as Fred.

If youíre not familiar with, or didnít like the original TV series, donít bother going to see this movie. But if youíre like I am and love Scooby Doo, youíll probably think the movie is a lot of fun.

IMDb - Scooby Doo