The acting was bad enough. Matthew Knight was poorly cast and directed. He was a whiny kid all the way through the movie. Robbie Coltrane, Hagrid in Harry Potter movies, voices the pathetic creature and can't make Gooby any more interesting. Eugene Levy will take any role and does the exact same character every time. The only good thing about the cast is Ingrid Kavelaars. She's beautiful, if nothing more than an average actor, who is too good for Gooby because of her looks alone. I couldn't wait until she, the main characters mom, was on screen again. Absolutely beautiful.
The writer/director has done nothing redeemable. Hopefully this is the nail in the coffin that keeps him from writing or directing again. Atrocious on both counts. It looked like he tried to juggle too many stories in one, and was successful on no level. Not one. The dialogue was horrible and nothing came together. Gooby wasn't even an interesting character. I could have made two small changes to the movie and made it that much better.
Do not watch this movie. It is one of the signs of the Apocalypse, and no one needs to see that. There's no way I could imagine Gooby would be entertaining to children. The character isn't funny, there is nothing colorful about Gooby, and the story is as lame as can be.
If the predictability was he only thing that was wrong with the movie, it would still be passable but the movie has many moments that end up feeling incredibly creepy. The first simply being "Gooby's" design. To make a creature sympathetic and cute-looking, you need to give it large eyes, not tiny beady ones that don't move and you need to make it seem vulnerable, not towering over it's child friend. It doesn't help that "Gooby" is given a few questionable moments and lines in the film that cement this into "unsettling" territory. At one point in the film the bear comments on how it was fun pretending to be "Willy's" father (right after getting him and his friends into an R-Rated movie) and there's a scene where "Gooby" drags "Willy" out of bed in the middle of the night to "show him something important" that just screams awkward.
Many plot points in the film don't make a lot of sense. For example, why is "Willy" being hidden from the parents? He's clearly real, eats a ridiculous amount of cookies and is so big that you might as well just tell them what's going on. Some elements are quickly and awkwardly introduced but then immediately forgotten, like "Mr. Nerdlinger", who appears in only a few scenes, is introduced as a new teacher (a few months after Willy moves into a new school, so we get two teacher introductions) and tries to get pictures of "Gooby", but only a few times and never really in a malicious way so he doesn't really feel like a villain. There are also some basic film making mistakes that make the movie look really amateur (a scene where we can hear thunder but can also catch a glimpse of the sunny weather through a window for example). The movie becomes tedious and pretty boring at times and it's so paint by numbers that there's just nothing here that really stands out except for the mistakes and missteps. "Gooby" isn't quality entertainment for adults and it meets the bare minimum for children so there's no reason to recommend it. (Dvd, March 22, 2013)
Disney's Toy Story maybe for everyones enjoyment but it's accomplishment came with a large obstacle of finding that middle ground so everyone could enjoy it's entertainment.