The Adventures of Shark Boy & Lava Girl in 3D

 

 

This was the promotional website for Disney's DVD & Video of the 2005 film, The Adventures of Shark Boy & Lava Girl in 3D.
Content is from the site's 2005 archived pages and reviews and images from various sources.
You could order the DVD as well as 3D glasses
Miramax's official site for the film is at: http://www.miramax.com/movie/the-adventures-of-sharkboy-and-lavagirl/

Everyone always knew that Max had a wild imagination, but no one believed that his wildest creations -- a boy raised by watchful great white sharks and a girl with the force of a volcano -- were real. Now, these two pint-sized action masters will show Max that even an ordinary kid has what it takes to be extraordinary.

 

Release date:June 10, 2005
Studio:Dimension Films
Director:Robert Rodriguez
MPAA Rating:PG (for mild action and some rude humor)
Screenwriter:Robert Rodriguez
Starring: David Arquette, Kristin Davis, Taylor Dooley, Taylor Lautner, Cayden Boyd, George Lopez, Sasha Pieterse

 

 

Plot Summary:

From the wild imagination of a child and the digital vision of director Robert Rodriguez (creator of the hit "Spy Kids" series as well as the recently acclaimed "Sin City") comes the magical, original, not to mention three-dimensional, family entertainment, "The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D". "The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl in 3-D" is written and directed by Robert Rodriguez, based on the intergalactic journeys and superhero stories created by his seven year-old son Racer Max. Sometimes the most amazing superheroes are the ones inside your dreams. So discovers ten-year-old Max (Cayden Boyd), an outcast little boy who has become lost in his own fantasy world in an attempt to escape the everyday worries of dealing with parents (David Arquette and Kristin Davis), school bullies and no-fun summer vacations. But when Max realizes the cool characters, high-flying adventures and incredible secret powers that dwell in his imagination might be far more real than anyone is willing to believe, his whole world changes. Now, Max is blasting off on a mission to Planet Drool where Shark Boy (Taylor Lautner) -- a kid once lost at sea and raised under the watchful fins of sharks only to become half-shark -- and Lava Girl (Taylor Dooley) – a volcanic beauty who emits leaping flames and red-hot rocks – live in a realm of astonishing wonders, one in which the Train of Thought can whisk you off to the mouth-watering Land of Milk and Cookies. Teeming with mountainous roller coasters and violet skies, Planet Drool looks like the perfect kid paradise until Max meets up with the shocking Mr. Electric (George Lopez) and his sidekick Minus (Jacob Davich) who are trying to do away with all dreams forever. With Shark Boy and Lava Girl in trouble, only Max can guide them – by imagining every clever move of their wily escape from Mr. Electric's Lair. Speedily conjuring up an incredible array of gadgets, gizmos, contraptions and cool ideas... Max learns the power of turning his dreams into reality.

 

Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer Critics 20% | Audience 31%

Writer and director Robert Rodriguez returns to the family-friendly adventure of his Spy Kids movies with this three-dimensional action opus. Max (Cayden Boyd) is a ten-year-old boy who doesn't get along with his peers and is constantly bullied at school. But Max has an active imagination, and he has a pair of very special imaginary playmates -- Shark Boy (Taylor Lautner), a human-shark half-breed cared for by a pack of great whites, and Lava Girl (Taylor Dooley), a girl with superpowers who can conjure heat and fire at will. Max may be a creative boy, but what he doesn't know is that Shark Boy and Lava Girl really do exist, and he is recruited to help them as they do battle against Mr. Electricity, a super-villain determined to deprive children of their sleep. Shot and originally released in the 3-D format, The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl also stars David Arquette and Kristin Davis as Max's parents, and George Lopez as a schoolteacher; writer and director Rodriguez wrote the film's story in collaboration with his then seven-year-old son, Racer Rodriguez. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

CRITICS REVIEWS

 

The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3-D (2005)

Posted on March 17, 2006by Felix Vasquez

The words Robert Rodriguez would come to regret saying for years to his son: “This would make a cool movie”. Oy. It’s difficult to just outright cut this movie a new one, especially since the intentions behind it are admirable. Whether or not Rodriguez’ son thought of the story, dreamt of these characters, and or co-wrote this screenplay, it’s hard to completely rip it apart. It sucks, that’s a given, and its Rodriguez’ worst, but I’m still trying to figure out why this was made. I remember kids movies being bad, especially when I was a kid. I had to suffer through “Rock a Doodle”, “Ferngully”, and “Mom and Dad Save the World”, but I believe it’s possible to make a very good kids film.

Whatever market Rodriguez is hoping to corner with his kids films, he really doesn’t have it covered. “Sharkboy and Lavagirl” is a well intentioned bit of fluff but its a kids film that’s empty and void of anything worth taking away from. The kids will turn this on, watch it, and leave without memory of what they’d just seen. The film has zero staying power, and for a man whose sole intent was to make films like “Sin City” that would make an impact, he’s taking three steps back with this. Why Rodriguez would make a film other than as a present to his son, is beyond me. And it’s shocking the studios didn’t even give him a hard time about making it either. Must have sold his soul. When my nephew brings me a picture of a superhero he drew, I simply say it’s great and move on, you don’t make a fucking film out of it. You can humor kids without wasting resources, money, time, and talent. There’s love within the intentions of the film, but it’s incredibly unnecessary, and incredibly artificial.

There’s really nothing eye-catching about the world Rodriguez lays out for us, and it’s just so visually generic. From the planet drool, the ice world, and the milk and cookies world, it’s just so aesthetically offensive at times. And a world of dreams, wasn’t that included in one of the “Spy Kids” films or am I nuts? Either way, there’s nothing imaginative in the imagination of Rodriguez, and these worlds are never original. He doesn’t seem to want to invent a new zeitgeist, he just wants to do what everyone else has done before, except worse. There’s a musical  number, bad special effects, even worse 3D, and horrible acting ala the children and basically everyone else further induced by really bad dialogue. Cayden Boyd–younger brother of better actress Jenna Boyd–gives a terrible performance as the whiny, and annoying Max whose imagination could spell hope, or doom for his own world.

Taylor Launtley is cringe-inducing, and awfully awful as the odd character Sharkboy. Taylor Dooley is bland and forgettable as the heroine Lavagirl. But the awful acting is also attributed to the badly written characters. The two title heroes are perhaps the worst written basically because their characterization contradict what Rodriguez expects of us. How can we like two children heroes whom are so unlikable? Lavagirl is whiny, and self-centered asking every three minutes “Was the dream about me? I want to find out my origin”. Hell, they enlist Max to help them save the world and all she thinks about is finding her own story, while Sharkboy is a bully. Why would a kid who is bullied everyday dream of a character  who is a bully himself? That’s a ridiculous paradox that’s never really rectified.

While I’m sure the intended persona of Sharkboy is “gruff but lovable”, he really does nothing but be a bully to Max. He threatens to punch him, tries to attack him often, and seems to get a kick out of it, and the duo never really have believable enough chemistry. “Sharkboy and Lavagirl” is as artificial as Rodriguez’ Spy Kids films, except bad. I enjoyed the “Spy Kids” films basically because it was much more genuine in its intentions than this was. Okay, you’ve gotten it out of your system like a gall stone Rob, now can we get back to making good movies, please? Kids films don’t have to be this bad, and I know it, because I’ve seen kids films that were great. Rodriguez should really learn that if he wants to give his kids a present, he should think college fund, not a really bad movie.

 

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The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3-D (2005)

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment // PG // September 20, 2005
Review by Scott Weinberg | posted September 25, 2005 | 

n less than three consecutive months, the multi-tooled filmmaker Robert Rodriguez gave us one of 2005's very best films (Sin City) and of the 2005's very worst films (The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D). Using his 7-year-old son's very active imagination as the springboard to a really lame film, Mr. Rodriguez wrote, produced, directed, shot, edited, scored, and voiced some characters in this misshapen mass of CGI detritus. (Oh, and he also acted as the visual effects supervisor and the sound mixer.) It's as if he had a whole lot of visual junk left over from the surprisingly tiresome Spy Kids 3-D and just decided to stretch 'em out into one more kiddie flick.

Our main character is a bookish little dreamer named Max, the imaginative creator of Sharkboy and Lavagirl. His classmates initially dismiss Max as a goofball, but those tunes change once the pre-teen superheroes fly into their classroom and whisk Max away on a wild adventure that strains the eyes as it corrodes the brain.

Ah yes, the 3-D gimmick; truly a shining beacon of narrative genius, isn't it? Watching the flick through the red & cyan-lensed glasses gave me a rather throbbing little headache, so I went back and re-started the 2-D version. About a half hour later, I realized that SB & LG was still providing me with a serious mini-migraine. But if you've ever wanted to see what a 90-minute cereal* commercial would look like, here's your chance. (*One of those really sugar-heavy cereals.)

The main problem with the flick, aside from its atrocious acting performances, its garish and inescapable CGI landscapes, and its horrifically simplistic life lessons about imagination and dreams and blah-blah-blah... No, the biggest problem with The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D is that it's simply not much of a movie. Without any noteworthy semblance of character development or narrative structure, you're left watching a 88-minute video-game demo.

You'll hop from ice caverns to cookie rafts to bubble worlds with no real rhyme or reason, the frankly pointless expositional dialogue forever flopping out of the three young actors' mouths. Each time we arrive at a new location, we're treated to words like "OK, over there is the giant marshmallow mush-monster of moon-town. In order to get past him and make it into the Bizzy Blender Defender we must climb over the teflon bridge of indifference, catapult through the maple syrup spider-web of Ritalin, and make our way down the clippy, cloppy clifftops of Boogerberg Terrace. Go, Sharkboy, do it!"

Then the three insufferable little tykes do precisely what they just said they would do, and now it's time for Boogerberg Terrace. And to escape the Terrace we must limbo under the speckled stick of Stooltown and then...!

And on and on and on.

Y'know, I really do respect Robert Rodriguez for loving his son enough to build an entire movie for the kid, but that sweetness alone does not instantaneously result in something fit for mass consumption. Just as easily (and with a lot less expense), the proud papa could have made Racer his own movie, burned it onto a DVD, and given it to the kid for his birthday. Because, frankly, this is one of the most outrageously obnoxious and self-indulgent "kid's flicks" I've seen in quite some time, and no amount of good intentions are going to make The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D any less than a huge, shrieking eyesore of a vanity project.

The DVD

Video: The movie comes in your choice of 2-D or 3-D, only one of which is liable to give you a headache and/or a nosebleed. The 2-D transfer is a very crisp and colorful Anamorphic Widescreen affair, even if the overall feeling you get from the flick is that of falling into a giant vat of sprinkle-infested Cool Whip. If you choose to go the 3-D route, be prepared to re-calibrate your video settings just a little, and be sure to wear one of the four pairs of glasses that are included in the package. Still, it's a whole lot of effort for very little positive result. 3-D is a gimmick, Rob, and you're a better filmmaker than one who needs to rely on visual gimmickry. No amount of bells & whistles can salvage a screenplay this half-baked.

Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, which is clear enough to convince you that there's very little in The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D that's worth listening to. Optional subtitles are available in English and Spanish.

Extras: There's a feature-length audio commentary with the seemingly inexhaustible Robert Rodriguez, with a few guest appearances from his son Racer. As usual, Mr. Rodriguez delivers a chat-track full of production tidbits and interesting observations, but after a while it feels like you're listening to a guy narrate his own home movies. Although it was obviously a labor of love, The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D feels like it was created exclusively for the director's kids -- and nobody else. There's also an 8-minute featurette entitled Creating "Shark Boy and Lava Girl" with Racer Max that features the Rodriguez family "brain-storming" story concepts, swimming in the pool, and basically have a good ol' time. Dare I say this piece is about 15 times more entertaining than the movie itself, despite that fact that it's not even in 3-D!

Final Thoughts

I suppose it would be kind of pointless to dismiss The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D as "infantile" or "childish," considering that the whole flick basically sprung from the imagination of a kid lucky enough to have an experimental filmmaker for a daddy, but this is an absolute train-wreck of an experience for anyone over the age of 10. I almost feel bad for bashing the movie so effusively, because I really do think that Robert Rodriguez is a fresh and unique sort of filmmaker ... but he should be smart enough by now to know that a few kooky pieces of construction paper do not a movie make.

And with all due respect, please spare me the "Oh, c'mon! It's for kids!" argument, because "kids" will watch pretty much anything that looks shiny and sounds goofy; it's our job to help our children weed out the quality stuff from the clattering junkpiles like The Adventures of Sharkboy & Lavagirl in 3-D.

But obviously, if you're a Rodriguez fan (as you should be), you'll probably have to give this one a rental to decide for your very own, and I always admire that attitude. Just be sure to pop a couple aspirins before the lights go down. 

AUDIENCE REVIEWS

* Sterlin R February 4, 2017
This is just as bad as Spy Kids. It has godawful CGI, bad jokes, and stupid acting. Kids might like it, but adults will despise it.

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**** Cindy T December 12, 2016
I had to watch it because my brother told me to watch it its kind good movie.
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Leonard D October 20, 2016
More of a childhood nightmare than something that defined it.

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***** Daniel A October 2, 2016
INCREDIBLE PIECE OF FILM

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* Salah A September 26, 2016
It's hilariously bad. Just wow!

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* ½ Jake M September 25, 2016
Robert Rodriguez is a great director, but the cheapness of this movie doesn't work to the films advantage like some of his other stuff. The actors aren't believable (and sometimes funny because of how bad they are), the effects are lame, and the story is weak. It's probably one of the worst 3-D movies ever made too. Granted, it is a kids movie so it really isn't for everyone. In a nutshell, it's not the worst kids movie out there, but it is close.

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* ½ Thomas T. Thomas T  September 8, 2016
There are some exciting 3-D aspects, but there are also no exciting characters, no exciting story, no fuel of excitement put into this non-exciting adventure, and I believe I have said enough.

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*****Steve W August 19, 2016
This film makes me weep into my flowery pillow at night, the vast emotional waves that Robert Rodriguez brings to the film industry are astronomical.

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*½ Fernando C  July 19, 2016
bad bad movie! everyone saw it only because of the 3D

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***** Kayla B July 14, 2016
This movie is a gift to the world

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* Silvestre S June 27, 2016
Being a childish stupid plot horrifying acting and impossibly bad special effects and script this movie doesn't create any feels to its audiences.

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* Robert G June 12, 2016
The poor acting, godawful special effects, and plot hole ridden story occasionally push this into "so bad it's good" territory, but not enough to make it fun.

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***** Crystal H June 11, 2016
My kids love watching and so do I that is bad seeing how I am 26 years old

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*** Ahmed M June 4, 2016
This one of my "guilty-pleasure movies" if you will. I personally liked this movie quite a lot, despite it being a bad plot, getting boring at times, but it never took away from its entertaining factor.

 

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