Critic Review - Ebert & Roeper

I love the look and the style and the spirit of this film.

May 12, 2008 | Comments (8)
Ebert & Roeper
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Zach Koch

You know, you should teach other critics a thing or two about enjoying a movie for its style and spirit. For what speed racer was trying to accomplish it did so with flying colors, literally.

A review.

May 12 - 10:35 AM


Bruce Johnson

I finally have my Rosetta Stone to interpret Roeper's reiviews. He is a geek, and admits it. This movie was painful to sit through and by sitting through it and seeing his discussion of it on TV everything clicked into place. I saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall and thought it so-so and could not for the life of me reconcile why Roeper thought it such a gut buster, now I know, he likes unwatchable movies.

May 12 - 03:35 PM


Rob Humanick

Sure, it's that simple. News flash: I love Speed Racer and loathe Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Recalibrate your worldview.

Aug 11 - 03:54 PM


Cody Vandenberg

Mr. Roeper, you've done it again!

May 12 - 06:09 PM

Cajun Hobbit

Randy Richards

Me and my 8-year-old daughter went to see this film on opening day. Wow... Stunning. Breathtaking. Thrilling. Jaw-dropping. Unreal. Did I say stunning? And amidst all those emotions, the movie is exactly as it should have been. And from one die hard fan to another - I wouldn't change a thing. Speed Racer is a conundrum of fantastic attributes all whipped together deliciously well. Larry and Andy Wachowski do an incredible job adapting a beloved cartoon. The art direction in the movie is dizzying, and rightfully so. While at first the super-colors and fast pace can be overwhelming, you quickly realize that the film would not work any other way. And at 2 hours and 20 minutes, one might think it would drag on forever, or that it would become dull. Nope. There's always an element around the corner ready to kick the film into high gear again,and because of that it felt like the entire movie was packed into a half-hour episode.

The cast? Perfect. Emile Hirsch was a good choice as Speed Racer, and John Goodman looks really funny and quite different as Pops Racer. Ricci also looks strange with her Romulan-styled haircut, but still very beautiful as the ever-present Trixie . The support cast is just as good, with Paulie Litt as the mischievous, candy-loving Spritle (Spritle and Chim Chim had some really bizarre and funny scenes), Susan Sarandon as the ever-supportive Mom, and Matthew Fox as the stoic Racer X. Whoever pulled off this casting deserves some kind of award. The only character I felt sorry for was poor Sparky, played by Kick Gurry, who only gets a few one-liners throughout the movie, and a short-but-touching scene near the end.

The film follows a fast paced, but not overwhelming, story line, surrounding a complex and intricate series of corporate mergers, buy-offs, and moral soul searching. It begins with, and in truth completely revolves around, Speed's relationship with his older brother Rex. Following Rex's tragic and unforeseeable death, the racer family is thrown into despair until Speed thrusts them back into high gear. Speed, along with his supportive and loving family, sets out to stop the evil Royalton Inc. from repeating history and destroying the very ones he loves most. Make no mistake, though, this is a love story. You'll just have to see the movie to understand why.

"Speed Racer" is essentially a giant cartoon, and its plot is perfect because it doesn't take itself too seriously. The movie isn't campy, but it's also not overreaching its own bounds to be falsely great; "Speed Racer" makes last year's SFX bonanza, "Transformers," look bloated and silly. Above everything else, this movie is a visual feast that stays true to the cartoon. If real racing was this exciting, I would watch it all the time. Mach-a-go-go see this movie!

Oh, and my daughter loved the movie too. :-)

May 12 - 09:51 PM


Darin Grant

Considering you are probably my favorite critic out there and we agree on almost every single movie (90%)I couldn't agree with you more, Richard!
I thought this movie was absolutely amazing for it's look, style, and spirit! Way to go, Wachowski brothers! And seeing it in IMAX was awesome!
Sadly, this is one of the few great reviews of an otherwise terrible movie as far as in the critics minds! Screw them, though! This was great!

Jun 1 - 09:22 PM

Nelson Verdejo

Nelson Verdejo

are you all F'ing kidding me?! this movie was terrible! such a disappointment considering it had an awesome trailer and it came from the masterminds behind the matrix. The action and the acting was terrible, the visuals were nauseating and the sets and backdrops of the film did not look good at all. This could've been a real fantastical race film if the visual effects supervisor did a better job. shame on the wachowskis for doing this....they should go back to doing like a matrix prequel or something to tie up loose ends in the unsatisfactory 3rd film and do it well next time. all they have is the first matrix...guess these guys are just 1 hit wonders

Dec 19 - 05:29 AM

Ocram Immorto

Ocram Immorto

Richard is here to have us appreciate the style and wit of the movies regarding the story etc. Ebert is here to let us know what is logically essential and most films, even if they are not praised, he would still see what little or more greatness is inside a film.

Oct 5 - 12:47 PM

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