The Pace: Kid's movies are always entertaining and this movie has all the engaging pieces I like at the speed that is entertaining. Kids will surely love the hasty pace of the film, dazzling you with all the quick paced adventure and comedy that comes with it. Yet, the pace is not breakneck, capable of still giving plenty of time to storytelling and allowing the older audience members to enjoy the movie as well. It really is a fine-balanced movie on this part and wins points for me.
The Voice Acting: These actors give me chills at what they can pull out of their vocal patterns, and The Bad Guys crew is loaded with wonderful performances that fit the bill quite well. Sam Rockwell nails the lead role well, and I feel he did a great job playing the conflicted "hero" who has a lot of soul searching to find. Marc Maron as Snake is stellar, another loaded gun that has his own turmoil to face, but yet holds the sass and vigor of someone who is ingrained in his ways. The two feel very much like the best friends they portray, and I love the ribbing and vigor they have. As for Awkwafina, a bit more of the prop character, the actress normally loaded with comedy craziness, was actually toned down and respectable, still not too out of her comfort zone, but a much more well-rounded performance. Others hit their marks quite well, and if I had more room, I would go into everyone, but the chemistry between them all is fantastic and really a solid pillar to which this group works.
The Character Balance: You've got at least five characters to work into a crime/comedy, and that's not counting a few other characters that have their own involvement in the film. And like a good book, this film does it super well with the characters that they promoted. Each of the animals may not have all the equal time, but they stand out in unique ways, bring their gifts to the table, and provide a meaningful contribution to the film. You, and the younger audiences, will find a character that they absolutely enjoy, and you will get your fill of them in almost every way. The use of each group is fantastic for me, and I appreciate how just about every character had that purpose and meaning to their inclusion.
The Comedy: While a bit juvenile at times, the movie's humor is very fun and appropriate for the family. A witty phrase by a guinea pig, the fickle nature of human trends, even just a perfect phrasing that is comedic gold. The Bad Guys uses it all well and mixes things up to stay fresh, exciting, and filled with variety, all while baking it in naturally and not trying to force it in your face. That's right, you don't have to worry about a catchphrase being repeated like crazy, well mostly, and for that, DreamWorks wins the victory for me on the comedy, even if it is not the most mature, clever, or downright unique.
The Plot: Much like a good book, The Bad Guys wins points again for a book adaptation that felt fleshed out, complete, and again fun. The Bad Guys starts off in the simple aspect you expect it to, high adrenaline comedy crime, and boasting about it afterwards. Soon, the plot starts to dig into deeper into other elements, trying to give more insight into the morals and characters and trying to twist the plot into new directions. And yet... they never drop the foundation of the movie, keeping those involvements and making the story wrap together nicely and feel organic. It's engaging, it's fun, and again it works on multiple levels, with a great performance to again amplify the tale to a quality I like.
It's Adventure: What do I like highly about this film? It's that it's an adventure film that finally goes back into escaping from the reality of the world, but still teaches a moral lesson. Like the animated films I grew up with, The Bad Guys finally takes me on the adventure and story I like, instead of getting stuck in check boxes and personal issues to make a realistic story. By finally taking a detour back into the world of fun and adventure, the excitement and entertainment stand strong and I had fun watching an animated film. Sure, it's no Oscar tear jerker, but given the style and escape from all the political stuff that's in your face, it excels amazingly in this aspect.
The Animation: I know, it does not look real, it does not look fully fleshed out, and you probably have other CGI focused movies that do things better. However, the Bad guys has a nice unique modality that stands out from the usual manners of making animation come to life. The kids book style is really popping, and the way they make the group come to life is sensational for this reviewer. The theft scenes are just an opening, and the movie does a great job pushing the limits of this style and really giving you a comic book meets story mode and I loved almost every second of it. In fact, this might be one of the best action scenes I have seen in a long time, proving again with imagination, some guts, and some balance, you can get excitement back in these movies. Nice work on the style and pizazz with your animation my friends, for it succeeded big time for this reviewer.
Predictable: I did not even know the movie series was based on books, but I have not read them and was still able to decipher all the twists within the first twenty-five minutes. Sadly, the book is not geared for major surprises, it could have used them to spice things up. At the least, they could have avoided the obvious set up that they did, instead of just giving everything away.
More Action: With all the things this movie did, I had hoped to see a little more of that factor I really loved. The Bad Guys could have used a few more crime attempts, maybe some plans, or adding a little more of the Ocean's 13 element they were going for. Even some of the less violent oriented moments could have used some more time, but this is relatively minor to the other two elements I wanted in this movie.
More Time with Some of The Characters: As I said, the cast of characters have their inclusion, but there seemed to be more they could have done with them in the final project. Perhaps this problem is addressed in the books, but several of the other characters needed time to get their own edge and quirks out, other than just being comedic ploys. Shark in particular was funny and has some moments, but there was a lot more potential to work with to make him more than just the comedic punching bag he is. Piranha and Tarantula have a little more ironing out, but again, there is more there, which might be addressed in future installments.
Too Much Revealed in The Trailers: Modern day advertising is both impressive and destructive at the same time. The Bad Guys is one of those moments that gives a lot of the plot away second to the copious number of things they give in the trailer. Though it does not dilute the fun, it did cost me several laughs at the jokes they wanted to hold and in all honesty the surprises they wanted to share. This is probably the biggest thing to take away from the movie for me, but if you avoid the trailers then you are good.
In this case, being Bad is so Good and I really had a wonderful time with this movie and the endeavors they built for us. With great cast, music and voice acting the movie already had the elements to be a decent film, however making a story with good animation really sent this movie to new heights for me. It's got pizazz, it breaks from the realistic movie moments that are the hot trend, and it does it so in a natural style that again was just fun. It's totally worth the trip to the theater to see, or at least to enjoy when it arrives on streaming in a few weeks. Sure, the movie is predictable, lots of things ruining from the trailers and still has some smoothing out to do. Overall, though, I definitely give this movie a big thumbs up and approve the film for so many.
My scores are:
Movie Overall 7.5.