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“The Bob’s Burgers Movie” Review: A Comfort Eat in Film Form

Usually – TV series that make it to the big screen do so for an epic adventure. That isn’t the case with The Bob’s Burgers Movie.

And that’s okay.

The Bob’s Burgers Movie plays out like an extra-long, especially well-animated episode of the show. 

PLOT

When a sinkhole appears outside the restaurant, which reveals the corpse of a missing Wharf worker – the Belchers’ landlord Calvin Fischoeder is blamed. After overhearing Linda and Bob worrying about finances, Louise decides to prove Fischoeder’s innocence so they can stop the restaurant from shutting down.

The typical Bob’s Burgers-style misadventures ensue. Tina wants Jimmy Jr.. to become her summer boyfriend, Gene wants the Itty Bitty Ditty Committee to play at the Wharf, and Louise worries about her status at school.

THE GOOD

I forgot a lot of the movie soon after I left the theater, usually a net negative for me. But I don’t think that’s the case for The Bob’s Burgers Movie. I know I enjoyed it.

The film was everything you could ask for – with references to earlier episodes and cameos from past characters. As someone who’s been a fan of the series for a while, it was a lot of fun seeing all the callbacks.

Gene’s band from Season 5 making a comeback was cute and expected. I thought that was long forgotten – so it was nice to see it again.

The plot isn’t anything status quo changing – though I expect to see added “re-opening” sign in future seasons. I like how in terms of plot, The Bob’s Burgers Movie could easily be a season finale. (In fact, it’s very much like the Season 4 double-length finale in a lot of ways. I won’t complain since that’s one of my favorites.)

The Animation

As with many theatrical releases of animated properties – the animation got a temporary upgrade. The movie takes every chance it can to show off the shading, and the fluid movements of the characters – especially during the musical numbers.

The film is all hand-drawn animation…something we haven’t seen from Disney in ages. Being able to see how awesome the film looks in traditional 2-D animation makes me ache for more. The larger budget, rather than going for 3-D models, went to adding extra details like shadows textures, and light.

I have no complaints about the animation.

I appreciate how they didn’t change any of the character’s designs or voice actors. 

The Music

Of course, being a piece of Bob’s Burgers media, there are songs. I do wish they had leaned more into the whole musical aspect more. But the songs that are performed are upbeat and catchy – exactly what you’d expect from the show.

The villain’s number as to their master plan is very catchy – as a villain song should be. That’s what’s important. It’s been a while sing I’ve seen a good villain song in a movie.

The Bunny Ears

In the film, Louise wants to prove that she isn’t “a baby.” After being made fun of for not wanting her hat off, she gets self-conscious about how others view her.

Anyone who watches the show knows how important the hat is to her. She never seems to take it off – and it’s in the movie that we finally learn why. I liked how they finally gave us the origin story for Louise’s bunny ears. 

It’s a great little treat for the fans and provides us a lot of insight into her character.

THE BAD

Because the movie plays out so much like an extra-long episode – it’s not especially memorable. After the movie, I could barely remember any of the songs. All I could remember is Louise’s ‘character development.’

Tina and Gene really don’t grow throughout the film – instead, they stick with the two’s best-known traits: Tina’s crush on Jimmy Jr. and Gene’s love of music.

Jimmy Jr.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Tina can do so much better than Jimmy Jr. I don’t know whether the crew actually thinks it’s a good pairing or not.

I just don’t like the ship at all. It may be more realistic for 13-year-olds to act this way. But the fact that the same issues pop up over and over again is annoying. Bring back that kid from the dance school or show more of Zeke’s interest in her.

And let have her have a crush on anyone but Jimmy Jr.

Literally, anyone else would be better.

The Scoop

While it’s certainly not the most bombastic or memorable movie I’ve seen recently; The Bob’s Burgers movie is still a very satisfying and comforting watch (yes, even though it’s a murder mystery.) Like its television counterpart – it’s familiar and relatively low stakes compared to other cinematic universes. Which is surprisingly refreshing.

This movie is definitely going to be a comfort watch for me. It’s up there with Miyazaki movies, The Good Place, and the series itself.

I don’t think it’s one that NEEDS to be seen in theaters. But if you want more hand-drawn 2-D animated movies, support The Bob’s Burgers Movie with all your might. We don’t get nearly enough of them. The only way to get more is to express interest when the film is released in theaters!

And that’s the scoop.

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GRADE: B

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Release Year: 2022

Length: 102 minutes

Producers: Janelle Momary-Neely, Loren Bouchard, Nora Smith

Directors: Loren Bouchard, Bernard Derriman

Editor: Kris Fitzgerald

Writers: Loren Bouchard, Nora Smith

Voice Actors: Loren Bouchard, Patrick & Tim Dacey, Elegant Too, John Dylan Keith, Brent Knopf

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