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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, November 19, 2004

Kids, parents alike will soak up some fun with 'SpongeBob' film

By Randy Cordova
The Arizona Republic

THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE (Rated PG) Two and One-Half Stars (Fair-to-Good)

The popular cartoon character is on a quest to find a king's stolen crown. Like the TV show it's based on, this film is a daffy, enjoyable concoction, one that doesn't talk down to kids and revels in its sheer silliness. Paramount, 88 minutes.

SpongeBob SquarePants is a popular cartoon character who also has clicked with some teens and adults, thanks to a playful humor that crosses typical kid-entertainment boundaries.

"The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie" moves the sweet-natured goofball to the big screen. Like the TV show it's based on, it's a daffy, enjoyable creation, one that doesn't talk down to kids and revels in its sheer silliness.

SpongeBob, for those out of the know, is a childlike sea sponge living in Bikini Bottom, an underwater haven populated by rubbery creatures. Along with starfish pal, Patrick, he goes off on an adventure to retrieve a king's missing crown, which was stolen by a plankton restaurateur. Yes, you read that correctly — the bad guy is a plankton that runs a fast-food restaurant called the Chum Bucket.

The movie lacks the artfulness or depth of something like "Finding Nemo," but it does boast an endearing good spirit and enough chuckles to keep it buoyant for its brief running time.

The movie is a cute little adventure involving friendship and courage, with Patrick and SpongeBob tested as they encounter various obstacles during their quest. Laughs come from the utter cluelessness of the two, who bumble their way past various threats, including an underwater hitman gruffly voiced by Alec Baldwin.

"The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie" will please those who enjoy the loopy spirit of the TV show. And even those who have never experienced the wonders of Bikini Bottom may find themselves entertained by the colorful proceedings.

Rated PG for some mild, crude humor.