Scoob!: Film Review


As a big fan of the Scooby-Doo TV show and the live-action films growing up, I was sceptical about a reboot of the franchise, but Scoob! was much better than I was expecting it to be.

The film begins with an origin story showing how Shaggy (Will Forte) befriends Scooby (Frank Welker, the only original cast member) and teams up with Fred (Zac Efron), Daphne (Amanda Seyfried), Velma (Gina Rodriguez) to form Mystery Inc. The action properly kicks off ten years later, when the detective gang have to stop Dick Dastardly (Jason Isaacs) from collecting special skulls which will enable him to unleash the ghost dog Cerberus upon the world.

I was expecting Scoob! to be absolutely terrible but I was pleasantly surprised. It’s not a complete winner but it has plenty of physical comedy and action sequences to keep the children entertained and pop culture references and subtle mature humour for the adults. At the start, it felt weird seeing the characters as 3D computer-generated versions as I’m so used to the cartoons, as well as hearing Scooby talk more than usual, but I got used to it after a while. It was also strange to see the film take a superhero direction but I guess that’s what’s appealing these days.

This is intended to be the first instalment in a Hanna-Barbera shared universe and so it is crammed full of characters from various TV shows, such as Dynomutt (Ken Jeong), Blue Falcon (Mark Wahlberg) and Dee Dee Sykes (Kiersey Clemons). I’m not sure what the point of this is though, because these appearances will mean nothing to the film’s target audience. For instance, I only recognised Dick Dastardly, Muttley and Captain Caveman, and the others went over my head. Welker and Billy West as Muttley are the only actors reprising their voice roles, the rest are totally new. They did a fine job but it took some getting used to. The best piece of vocal casting was Isaacs as Dastardly – he just does evil so well!

Scoob! is overstuffed with characters and there is a lot going on, making a bit too convoluted for its audience, but it’s a lot of fun and it was nice being back with these familiar characters again. I would still rather watch the cartoon series or the live-action films again over this, but that’s probably down to the nostalgia factor. I’m sure this will be a great introduction to the characters for complete newcomers.

Available to rent for 48 hours from participating VOD services from Friday 10th July 

Rating: 3/5

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