WTF: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 08 (WTF Saint Pauly)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 01 poster (WTF Saint Pauly)

Spoiler Alert:

I shall be cutting into Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, slicing it’s separate pieces, and chopping each part into tiny bytes to determine if it’s Pie in the Sky or just cheesy. So read on only if you’ve already seen Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or don’t plan to.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 02 (WTF Saint Pauly)
The Tortoise and the Hair

0:00:06 Starts off with a view of the pre-911 New York skyline. An innocent time, when “the twins” didn’t (necessarily) mean breasts.

0:01:05 A crime wave surfed by teens floods the city.

0:02:58 April O’Neil (Judith Hoag), whom I would recognize from the comics if I’d read them, is attacked by the pubescent gang (The Cribs? Heck’s Angels? Yakazoo?).

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 07 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Her jacket is a rape prevention device

0:03:57 A street light is knocked out and when car headlamps shine on the scene seconds later, the criminals are tied up. The special effects so far consist of sounds and darkness.

0:04:32 April picks up a trident type weapon one of the turtles left behind. In the sewer, Raphael is none too happy. Perhaps because he lives in a sewer.

0:05:18 Our first look at the Turtles. Honestly? Not bad costumes for pre-CGI. Better, far better, than the music. Then again, diarrhoea on an ass ride to the bottom of the Grand Canyon is better than the soundtrack.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 08 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Making the turtle sauce

0:05:33 Drinking game: every time a turtle uses the word ‘awesome’, take a drink. Trust me, if you don’t, you’ll wish you had.

0:05:57

Gimme 3!

One of the Turtles

Because the Turtles don’t have five fingers.

0:06:47 A dog  (is it a dog? It looks as though it’s meant to be a dog — mea culpa, I’ve just discovered Splinter is a rat) is the leader of the Turtles and tells them that they must live in the shadows because no one would understand them. Like English royalty.

0:06:57 The trident knife is a ‘Sai‘. Who – other than me – said Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles isn’t educational?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 09 (WTF Saint Pauly)
A heavy sai

 

0:11:08

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 03 (WTF Saint Pauly)
“Augh! Where do they come up with this stuff?”

Raphael references Critters after seeing it in the cinema

My guess would be, “In the same sewer they found you.”

0:12:23 You know who misses the 90s? Elias Koteas. He misses the 90s like he misses his hair.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 04 Elias Koteas (WTF Saint Pauly)
Hair today, gone tomorrow

He plays Casey Jones, a sports vigilante who makes horrible jokes and teaches Raphael a lesson. But not about bad jokes – Raphael already has that mastered.

0:15:58 Charles, the station manager and April’s boss, is a ‘business man’ who is less realistic than the Turtles. He visits April with his son, Danny, a teenager who listens to a Walkman and belongs to teen mafia. #mamafia

0:17:43 WTF!? Michelangelo is in love with April? How does that even work? If she falls in love with him, is that not bestiality? How do turtles have sex? Don’t they die if they get on their backs?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 05 (WTF Saint Pauly)
“Ooh, you’re so hard.”

0:17:55 Darth Vader is in this film and wants to kill April because she refers to the Foot Clan while interviewing the police chief. Or maybe he’s upset his gang’s name reeks. Darth Hater (The Shredder) must be the king of foot fetishists. Did you hear about the blind foot fetishist? He got off on the wrong foot.

0:18:24 Charles’ son is arrested, and not just his development this time.

0:19:08 WTF!? No one recognizes Raphael as a giant freak, because he wears a hat and a coat? Honestly, look at this screen cap and tell me if you would wonder what kind of being this was if you were to see it in the city.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 06 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Under Cover – as Kermit the Frog

0:20:07 Naked turtles fighting ninjas in nylons who spank a blonde in a PVC raincoat… TMNT is Rule 34 incarnal.

0:22:52 Splinter tells April where Turtles come from.

0:27:07 WTF!? April is an investigative journalist who isn’t even tempted to write an article about giant turtles who can speak because they were exposed to industrial waste!?

0:28:04 While the Turtles were partying with April, someone came by their sewer, kidnapped Splinter and trashed their dump.

0:29:24 Charles asks April to drop the teen crime rash story because he made a deal with the police chief to secure his son’s release. She refuses. It’s not as though anything else of interest has popped up lately…

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 10 (WTF Saint Pauly)
“Why, yes, I am sloppy seconds. How did you know?”

0:32:51 The leader of the lost boys (Toshishiro Obata as ‘Tatsu’) teaches them a lesson by kicking one lad’s arse. Maybe the lesson should be: don’t follow a grown man who has to cheat to beat up a child.

0:35:08 Darth Faker (The Shredder) arrives to a lot of drums and gives one kid a nylon mask and tells everyone it’s an honour to wear the dragon Doogie. I don’t know if I’d wear it, but I know I’ve stepped in it a number of times.

0:35:16

This is your family. I am your father.

Darth Vader imitator

He certainly is a bad man. He just robbed Star Wars blind.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 11 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Breath Gaurd: When your mouth stinks as bad as your movie

0:45:46 It’s an assuredly long fight scene. The kind of fight scene where it’s good to spend a penny (take a leak, for you yanks). Casey Jones arrives and sets April’s father’s antique store on fire, but even she can’t be bothered to care.

0:46:55 Which might be a good thing because she was just sacked by her boss, who bowed to police pressure. She’s big with Turtles, though, so that should count for next to nothing.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 12 (WTF Saint Pauly)
They call this pose ‘Waiting for Meagan Fox’

0:47:44 Danny witnesses the damage he has caused, so he will betray the Foot and be redeemed. But will he pay for the shop? [Yes, at the end of the film he passes her a $20 bill. He was sorry, but not that sorry.]

0:52:01 Casey and April bicker so that we know they’re in love. A lesson for kids that love is dysfunctional.

0:53:36 Raphael is near death so they keep him in the bathtub. Shouldn’t they call a veterinarian?

0:58:20 Michaelangelo has his first lesson in human sex when he walks in on this.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 13 GIF (WTF Saint Pauly)

1:00:37 The Turtles have a meditation session and contact the spirit of Splinter. Over an open flame, which is the best way to cook a rat.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 14 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Turtle on the half shell

1:03:02 They decide to leave the country house because it’s too big, comfortable, and offers privacy for 4 giant turtles. Instead, the return to their sewer, where Casey complains about the accommodations. WTF!? He wasn’t even invited!

1:04:08

Donatello: You’re a claustrophobic.

Casey: You want a fist in the mouth? I’ve never even looked at another guy before.

WTF!? This is offensive on so many levels. First, as a gay man I find his anger mildly insulting, but, more importantly, this exchange offends my  intellect. Casey confuses ‘claustrophobic’ with ‘homosexual’. Isn’t ‘claustrophobic’ closer to ‘homophobic’? Which he is, so there’s no need to be offended. This is sadly typical of the banter thrown about this film like slop.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 16 (WTF Saint Pauly)
The turtles read their film reviews

1:04:49 Danny runs away from home and sleeps with the Turtles for the night (a cautionary tail). He also asks April for one of her sketches. It’s either for inspiration while he experiments with his puberty, or he’s going to expose the Turtles, so they come out of their shells.

1:07:52 Danny goes to visit Splinter. WTF!? The rat isn’t dead? So all that tripe at the bonfire about his last words just meant his last words of that conversation?

1:08:19

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 15 (WTF Saint Pauly)

1:11:28 The Shredder is an arch enemy who killed the rat’s master back in Japan. He finds the sketch so knows the Turtles are back. WTF!? How can he know where the Turtles are by looking at a sketch of them in a different location?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 15 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Proof turtles have a vagina

1:14:57

I’ll never call golf a dull game again.

Casey, after he hits Tatsu with a golf club

I include this joke only so that you might appreciate mine a little more.

1:16:43

Michelangelo: Hey, Donald, looks like this one is suffering from shell shock.

Donatello: Too derivative.

Michaelangelo: Boy, I guess we can really shell it out.

Donatello: Too cliché.

Michaelangelo: Well, it was a shell of a good hit.

Donatello: I like it!

My writing is looking better and better, isn’t it?

1:17:19

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 17 GIF (WTF Saint Pauly)

1:18:46

You fight well, in the old style. But you’ve caused me enough trouble. Now you face The Shredder.

In the sequel, will the have to face The Stapler?

1:23:30 The rat defeats the Robo Sucky (Oroko Saki / The Shredder), who falls to his death into Casey’s garbage truck. Casey then puts The Shredder’s ridiculous moniker into action.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 18 (WTF Saint Pauly)
“Splinter? I didn’t even know ‘er!”

1:24:42:

Charles: Are you OK, Danny?

Danny: It’s all right, dad. I’m OK, really. I’m OK. And dad? It’s just ‘Dan’ now, OK?

Charles: Dan?

Big father-son hug bonding over all the WTF!?

1:26:31 The wayward youth (Sam Rockwell from Iron Man 2) sends the police to their warehouse hideout because he’s decided to give prison a go. April gets her reporter job back, so she tells Casey to kiss her because they’re the only humans who live in sewage with turtles.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 19 (WTF Saint Pauly)
His mind’s in the gutter

1:26:50

All right, April! All right, Casey! That’s the way to go!

What talking turtles say when they see you kiss someone.

 

From bad special effects to bad dialogue to bad acting all starting from a bad idea.

1:27:55 Roll credits to a horrendous song. This will give hip hop a bad rap.

When you stand for what you believe in,
and find the strength to do what’s right,
that’s TURTLE POWER!

I think this song should be made the United States’ National Anthem.

For all of the lyrics (including “This is serious so give me a quarter. I was a witness, get me a reporter!”), please scroll down to the bottom of this post.

Tally Ho’

  • WTF!?’s: 9 hard cases
  • When to Follow: Saturday morning should be the only time people are legally permitted to watch this.
  • What To Feedback:

All GIFs used in this review were created with the Imgflip online meme generator

Left Over WTF (Way Too Funny) Photos

 

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 20 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Turtle Sauce
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 21 (WTF Saint Pauly)
“Hey! Check it out, Leo’s got back!”
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 22 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Product placement for turtle sex toys
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 23 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Turtles dancing the Can’t-Can’t
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 24 (WTF Saint Pauly)
Why turtles move so slowly

Prints suitable for reposting!

Leonardo suddenly realizes he's always naked

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 26 meme (WTF Saint Pauly)

What to Follow Up

WTF!? review of another film that bites
Fernby Films better review of a better film
Booze Revooze of a another childish effort

Lyrics to “T-U-R-T-L-E Power!” by James P. Alpern and Richard A. Usher Jr.

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! POWER

On the half shell, they’re the heroes four.
In this day and age who could ask for more?
The crime wave is high with muggings mysterious.
All police and detectives are furious.
‘Cause they can’t find the source,
Of this lethally evil force.
This is serious so give me a quarter.
I was a witness, get me a reporter!
Call April O’Neil in on this case, and
You’d better hurry up, there’s no time to waste!
We need help, like quick, on the double.
Have pity on the city, man it’s in trouble!
We need heroes like the Lone Ranger.
When Tonto came pronto, when there was danger.
They didn’t say they’d be there in half an hour,
‘Cause they displayed…Turtle Power!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! POWER

Now our ace reporter was hot on the trail.
Determined to put these crooks in jail.
She spied the bad guys and saw what happened,
But before she knew it, she fell in a trap and got caught.
Yeah, she was all alone.
With no friends, and no phone.
Now this was beyond her worst dreams,
‘Cause she was cornered by some wayward teens.
Headed by Shredder they were anything but good,
Misguided, unloved, they called them The Foot.
They could terrorize and be angry youth, and
They mugged the people. Who needed proof?
Then from out of the dark came an awesome sound!
Shouted “Cowabunga!” as they hit the ground.
From the field of weeds the heroes rescued the flower,
‘Cause they possessed…Turtle Power!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles POWER

When you stand for what you believe in,
and find the strength to do what’s right,
that’s, TURTLE POWER!

Heroes on the half shell, they’re on a mission.
When there’s a battle got the enemy wishin’.
That they stayed at home, instead of fightin’.
These ninja masters with moves like lightnin’.
They were once normal, but now they’re mutants.
Splinter’s the teacher so they are the students.
Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Donatello,
make up the team with one other fellow,
Raphael. He’s the leader of the group,
Transformed from the norm by the nuclear goop.
Pizza’s the food that’s sure to please,
These ninjas are into pepperoni and cheese.
Back to the story, it’s not hard to find.
Ninjas not just of the body but of the mind.
Those are the words that their master instructed,
But a letter from Shredder had Splinter abducted.
That was the last straw, spring into action.
Step on The Foot, now they’re gonna lose traction.
Now this is for real, so you fight for justice.
Your shell is hard so you shout; “They can’t dust us off!
Like some old coffee table.”
Since you were born you’ve been willing and able,
to defeat the sneak, protect the weak,
Fight for rights and your freedom to speak.
Now the villain is chillin’ so you make a stand.
Back to the wall, put your sword in you hand.
Remember the words of your teacher, your master:
“Evil moves fast, but good moves faster!”
Then light, shining from your illumination:
Good versus Evil equals confrontation.
So when you’re in trouble don’t give in and go sour,
Try to rely on YOUR…Turtle Power

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
T-U-R-T-L-E Power!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Power! POWER

6 thoughts on “WTF: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)

  1. First of all, its not offensive at all. Casey confuses claustrophobic with homophobic. The reason its funny is because Casey is so dumb he thinks homophobic and homosexual are the same thing. His reaction is completely normal for a straight male who finds homosexuality repulsive. It is true that straight males are utterly disgusted just by the thought of gay males, thats just the way it is. Secondly, you cannot simply state the acting is bad because they’re acting only body language through a suit. Someone else is doing the voice over, another person is controlling the facial expressions and yet another person is doing the action scenes. And at the time it had never been done before. The dialoge and special effects are not bad for 1990. This movie was made for 6 million dollars and it has made half a billion (theater, dvd, television) so it really does not matter what you think.

    Like

    1. Timo!

      Welcome back, friend. I was so relieved to learn you were not offended by the comment that mildly offended me. As I wrote, however, what really offended me was the stupidity of the logic. Your statement, “Casey confuses claustrophobic with homophobic” is simply not true. Lets look at the exchange:

      Donatello: You’re a claustrophobic.

      Casey: You want a fist in the mouth? I’ve never even looked at another guy before.

      Casey does not confuse ‘claustrophobic’ with ‘homophobic’ (which, ironically, he is so should not be offended), but confuses ‘claustrophobic’ with ‘homosexual’, which is why he says he’s never looked at another guy before. But ‘claustrophobic’ and ‘homosexual’ are not at all similar, and so the idea he would confuse these very different words is so far fetched that the writer in me was offended.

      As for your prejudice:

      His reaction is completely normal for a straight male who finds homosexuality repulsive. It is true that straight males are utterly disgusted just by the thought of gay males, thats just the way it is.

      I learned two things about you! 1) You’re a teenager and 2) probably from Russia. Trust me, as a gay man living in London, I have many straight friends who don’t find me repulsive. You’re right, though, most of those who are accepting of my lifestyle are erudite, educated and not threatened by me.

      Then you focus on one passing comment I made about, “From bad special effects to bad dialogue to bad acting all starting from a bad idea.” I in no way fault the Turtles’ acting, but more the other characters (especially the minor ones, like Jay Patterson as Charles Pennington). I even go so far as to compliment the Turtles at the beginning.

      Our first look at the Turtles. Honestly? Not bad costumes for pre-CGI. Better, far better, than the music. Then again, diarrhoea on an ass ride to the bottom of the Grand Canyon is better than the soundtrack.

      I must say, I really appreciated your joke that a film must be good if it made a lot of money! Hilarious! Because, if that were true, it would mean that you’re a huge fan of Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2, which grossed over $800,000,000 worldwide, in ticket sales alone. Thus, if we judge quality by profits, you think Breaking Wind Part 2 was one of the best movies ever made!

      Thanks for the smiles, my friend!

      WTF Timo (Watch the Film),

      Saint Pauly

      Like

      1. Hello Saint Pauly,
        Thank you for the reply. I must say you are simply wrong about the exchange. Casey is homophobic, yes, you are right about that but he does not confuse claustrophobic with homosexual, he confuses claustrophobic with homophobic. His character doesn’t know what homophobic means. He simply thinks homophobic and homosexual are the same thing. That is why it is hilarious, lol. The audience is not laughing at homosexuals, the audience is laughing at Casey Jones. If anything, the exchange is actually promoting homosexuality awareness. It’s saying “Hey kids, don’t be a fucking homophobic prick like Casey.” I also have to say you make a great point about Twilight and that making a lot of money does not guarantee a quality film (Add all the Hunger Games movies to that list), but I stand by this film. It was revolutionary in it’s own right. The director manages to (arguably) successfully pull off extreme close ups of inanimate objects and is able to evoke emotion from the audience by doing so. The main flaw I find with your review is that you keep forgetting it was made in 1990. The soundtrack was perfectly acceptable and in the sequel they got one of the top artist at the time, Vanilla Ice! Lol. I think MC Hammer was too expensive.

        Like

    1. Hallo Paul!

      Wow, funny and homophobic! I suppose a sign of how successful this site is becoming is the number of bigots who find there way here now, although you’re my first bigoted troll! Oh, and as I’m sure your vocabulary is as limited as your education, let me help you with the big words:

      Bigot: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance. Source

      WTF Paul!? (Watch The Film),

      Saint Pauly

      Like

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