For the past week, I’ve been down in the swamplands of Georgia hanging out with friends and having a complete blast at an event called HvZ Endwar. Imagine tag with Nerf Blasters, zombies, and tons of music and you’ll have a pretty solid idea of what it’s like. I highly recommend it for anyone that’s interested, but that’s not the point of this.
The point is that I was sitting in 100 degree heat, not counting humidity, sweating to death waiting for my ride to show up. It was then I checked my phone and I discovered that Norm of the North: King Sized Adventure released. I knew it existed, I just didn’t think that it would release this soon after that embarrassingly bad sequel. Why was a third movie greenlit in the first place? And why is there a fourth movie already announced???
So I turn to my friend and I show her the trailer. She knows that I reviewed the second movie, but she never saw it or the original Norm of the North. After finishing watching the trailer all she does is look at me and says “Good luck.”
And so, here are my continuing adventures into the saga of “Why is Jesse reviewing all of the damn Norm movies? (title pending)” My best answer? Masochism.
Norm of the North: King Sized Adventure
Directors: Tim Maltby, Richard Finn
Release Date: June 11, 2019 (VOD)
When the movie started up, I was really tempted to keep the same gag from last review where I just have a stream of consciousness of my thoughts as my review. Realistically, no words could accurately portray my thoughts on how baffling, elementary, and insane it was to sit through Norm of the North: Keys to the Kingdom without me just giving a beat by beat synopsis of the plot. By the time I was 10 minutes into King Sized Adventure, I had to nix that idea because I just wasn’t getting any good material to work off of. I could force some jokes to come from it, but it wouldn’t be genuine.
I was demotivated from trying to poke fun at King Sized Adventure, which fittingly ties into my thoughts on the movie; I can’t find any enjoyment out of it. Not in the sense where I can’t have fun making fun of it, but there was nothing that I don’t think most audiences could find funny. You want to know the plot to this movie? Norm needs to bring a Chinese artifact to Beijing to unlock a secret fortune before an evil British man does it first. That’s it. It’s the most basic adventure plot you can have with things only becoming mildly interesting because we get to look at lush jungles instead of ice blocks for an hour and a half.
The problem is that this movie is actually competent in a few sections. The animation is a fraction better than it was before, there’s a single plot that goes through the entire movie instead of being two separate stories stitched together as clunkily as possible, and the comedy was less groan inducing. With all of that together, it still only made King Sized Adventure seem vanilla. Chopping vegetables is more compelling than this movie. If there was a a movie I could award with the title of “Most Apathetic,” this movie would take the crown.
I can’t muster up any hatred for this movie. It’s a Direct to DVD/Digital release. Sure, I could get worked up about the other Norm movies since they were theatrical releases, but to my knowledge there are no plans to release this movie in theaters, especially not when better animated movies are out. Let’s be honest here, the only reason most people religiously follow these Norm movies (People follow these Norm movies? — Ed.) is because they’re bad and people want to know how bad the latest Norm movie is. I’m sorry to say, but this is the best one of the three, which isn’t saying much, mind you. The ability to piece together a basic plot with basic jokes and basic set pieces shouldn’t elicit praise from me, but that’s the way the cards are dealt.
Truthfully, this feels like punching down. I’m all up for sticking it to the man and letting people know if a truly terrible movie or TV show deserves vitriol, but trying to force negativity for a movie like this just seems like bad taste. Granted, I actively sought this movie out. I’m committed to following this series and finding out how bad or how good they become because I’m fascinated with why a company thought that a movie that received scathing reviews and had a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes for the longest time deserved a franchise. But ripping apart a movie that accomplishes simple tasks that they couldn’t do for years and delivers a passable product makes me feel like a jerk. The only person that would get any satisfaction out of that is me, but that would be me boarding on being a troll than a critic.
Would I recommend Norm of the North: King Sized Adventure to anyone? Oh, God no. A bad movie is still a bad movie, but when the competition is awful trash and insane idiocy, lukewarm milk seems like the best choice of the three.