Why, 2K?!- “Help! I’m A Fish” and “Life-Size”

The first decade of this millennium is often heralded as some sort of golden age for children’s films. Sure, most of Pixar’s best flicks came out in this period, and there were some winners in general, but I think people tend to view the films of their own childhood with rose-colored glasses. Most of these films are goddamn godawful. Just HOW goddamn godawful, you ask? Let’s find out together by checking out EVERY kids film between 2000 and 2009. From theatrical to direct-to-DVD to Disney Channel Original, we’ll look at ’em all because I am a glutton for punishment.

This week, We talk about a movie with the best title ever and a Disney Channel flick that would appropriately star John Constantine. This one’s a weird one.

HELP! I’M A FISH

Help!_I'm_a_Fish_UK_DVD_Cover

Ok, so I’m not gonna lie, I was one hundred percent in for this film based solely on the title alone. I don’t quite know why, but I can’t even read it without smiling ear-to-ear. I probably would’ve written an entirely positive review of this thing based just on its title.The film in itself is a Danish-German-Irish production that was only later dubbed into english. Everything about it tells me its something to be loved only ironically.

Which is why it came as such a shock to me that it’s so fucking good.

I truly loved this movie with all of my heart, and that is not what was supposed to happen. It fees right up there with the mid-nineties Disney animated films, both in terms of quality and under appreciated spectacle. I really really liked this movie and honestly felt like a small child again watching it. So let’s talk about the plot.

We follow three children: Fly, Stella, and Chuck. Stella is pretty much just the little sister, nothing more. Fly is your typical nineties cool troublemaking skateboarder and his cousin Chuck is your stereotypical overly cautious nerd. They contrast each other nicely.

Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 9.28.41 AM

                                                      I’m sure I don’t need to tell you which is which.

Fly is nice and whatever, but Chuck is the standout character. He has the central arc, he’s the easiest to identify with, and he’s just kinda adorable. He’s clearly been thrown into this situation against his will and he has to step up to become a hero in his own right. Plus, he’s voiced by Aaron Paul. Yes, the same Aaron Paul from Breaking Bad in his second ever film role.

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                                                                           “Science, Bitch!”

He’s great. But on with the plot! The three kids stumble into the lair of a scientist who is trying to find a way to deal with global warming. The scientist has created a potion to turn humans into fish so they will survive the melting of the ice caps and the ensuing floods. I love this idea a lot. Stella drinks the potion and is turned into a starfish, accidentally escaping out the window and into the sea. The scientist and two boys go after her, bringing the potion and antidote with them. As a storm kicks up, Fly realizes they won’t ever find his sister this way and drinks the fish potion, turning himself into a Californian Flyfish. The boat capsizes, forcing Chuck to drink the potion as well, since he cannot swim. He is transformed into a jellyfish.

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            DO NOT ask me why they still have glasses and a baseball hat. I honestly do not know.

But the antidote, which also sinks into the ocean, spills onto a shark and pilot fish, giving them human intelligence.The Pilot Fish, now calling itself Joe decides to get to work forming a society of intelligent fish that he can rule over. Also, Joe is voiced by the dearly departed Alan Rickman in an excellent performance. He’s perfectly creepy and evil.

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The trio of protagonists face off against Joe and… um… Shark as they try to turn human again before sunset, when they’ll be stuck as fish forever. The film is surprisingly dark, but in a good way. The climax, in which Joe drinks the antidote until he turns too human and drowns is pure nightmare fuel.

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                                             I mean, fucking LOOK at that, Jesus Christ.

All in all, it’s a really good movie that I highly recommend watching. It was an Incredibly pleasant surprise.

LIFE-SIZE

Life-sizedvd

Ok, I guess we’re talking about another DCOM. That’s cool. The DCOMs I’ve had to watch for this thing so far have been forgettable at worst, not bad. And this one stars Tyra Banks and Lindsey Lohan. Sure, whatever. I mean, child-Lindsey Lohan was a pretty good actress so her performance is pretty good here too. You know the drill, it’s time for a plot summary.

Lindsey plays Casey Stuart, a seventh grader going through the loss of her mother. And, like any young girl, she decides to buy a book of black magic to resurrect her deceased parent.

I’m sorry, what?

The first act of this movie reads like the first issue of a Hellblazer story. But unfortunately for everyone involved, Lohan doesn’t accidentally summon Calibraxis the blade demon to rend his unholy vengeance on all the world.

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                  “I will eat your soul, little child. And that bastard Constantine will be next.”

Instead the spell goes wrong and winds up bringing an Eve doll to life. The doll, played by Tyra Banks, isn’t a psychotic monstrosity despite being brought to life by the fucking Necronomicon or whatever. Instead, she’s charmingly naive and straightforward about everything. But y’know, to the point of comedy.

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Can’t decide whether to make an “unintended subtext” joke or a “whoever made this gif used the wrong ‘you’re'” joke.

Eve helps both Lindsey and her father grow closer together and get over their own issues because yay friendship. But Eve slowly realizes she wants to go back to being a doll because she’s homesick. She goes back to the toy factory, intended to return to her fictional home of…

I’m sorry, did she just say Sunnydale?

Welcome_to_Sunnydale_(Buffy_screenshot)

                                          Well, I mean, that WOULD make a lot of sense.

Whatever, not the point. Eve goes back home  and turns back into a doll, we get our “ET goes home” ending and everyone lives happily ever after until one of The Fallen comes to collect Lohan’s immortal soul for daring to fuck with dark magic.

But other than that, happily ever after.

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