STUDIO: Buena Vista/Miramax
RATED: Unrated
RUNNING TIME: 76 Minutes
Bionicle Explorer
Animated Comic Book
Web Movie
Bionicle Music

The Pitch

"Ok, we need to move some more of these Bionicle Playsets. Let’s make a new commercial. Except, instead of the usual 30 seconds, how about we make it just over an hour. Oh, and instead of calling it a commercial we’ll call it a movie. They’ll never know the difference!"

The Humans

Brian Drummond, Kathleen Barr, Trevor Duvall and a few other people you’ve never heard of. Oh, and guy named French Tickner.

The Nutshell

Okay, so you got these things called Toas. They’re good guy Bionicles who are trying to inhabit a place called Mata Nui, but before they can they have to return to their former home of Metru Nui, which has been taken over by spider people. The Toas get kidnapped and trapped in these weird bionic spider cocoons. When they break free they have newly attached weapons – which apparently is a bad thing, but they never explain why. So they have to find a way to transform back and save their old city. Wicked cool CGI action ensues. And by wicked cool I mean hopelessly dull. And by hopelessly dull I mean this shit put me to sleep…3 times.

Robot envy
Before deciding on "Bender," Matt Groening went through a series of rejected robot ideas, including the lovable but evil-looking "Squeegee," pictured here.

The Package

Cover features Bionicle People in battle pose with a Spider-Bot hovering over them. Everything is skewed in this weird green overlay, except for the bright red Bionicle Guy who’s front and center. It’s original artwork, which is always good for DTV animation, but it’s crappy. Audio and Video are pretty much what you would expect. It’s presented in 1.78:1 Widescreen and includes a Dolby 5.1 Track. Sound effects and battle sequences sound nice, but the whole aesthetic of the feature is dark so it’s hard to be dazzled by the CGI. Extras are little more than fluff but some of them do serve as supplements to the story so that’s cool. Well, if you like the story, I guess.

The Lowdown

I love Legos. With some inspiration and a wide variety of pieces you can build damn near anything. Legos originally promoted creativity and ingenuity, which is why I HATE these newer, niche Lego Playsets. Especially those damn Bionicles. Where’s the originality? How can the kids do anything creative? They can only really build one thing. Which in and of itself isn’t really a problem – I wouldn’t expect anything more from say, K’Nex. But this is Lego, dammit!

Oh… yeah this is a DVD review isn’t it?

Okay, so this is the third in a series of Bionicle DTV Movies. Let me just say – this shit is convoluted. Convoluted and boring. I didn’t know a lot about the story of these characters so I did a little digging and let me say – these guys have a history. There are all these different races of Bionicles, all these different colors represent different things, it’s ridiculous. It makes this movie almost impossible to follow, and I’m an adult. I just can not imagine how kids can get into this.

MTV sucks.
Which ruthless alien overlord kicks it here? Find out on the next episode of MTV’s Interstellar Cribs!

However, I know there’s a fan base for these black-holes of originality, so I’m sure if you are a fan of Bionicle you’ll be a fan of this movie. But seriously – why be a fan of Bionicle? Go buy your kid regular Legos. They’ll get so much more out of it and you won’t even have to waste your money on a crappy supplement movie.

3.0 out of 10