Going into the Angry Video Game Nerd movie, giving all of the negative reviews and insults directed towards the film and its main star, who could blame me for expecting the worst. Well after sitting through the almost two hour film, I can honestly say, it is not as bad as I was expecting. But it wasn't as good as I was expecting either.
Vimeo had a framerate issue throughout the entire thing. It even skipped near the end of the film. Or maybe it was because of my six year old computer.
The special effects range from pretty impressive like in the dream sequence early on to on-par with the webseries, which is not a compliment, but then again, given James Rolfe's obvious love of B-movies, I was totally expecting miniatures and goofy costumes. In all honesty, if you believe all of a movie's budget goes towards special effects - stop talking. When Rolfe said "If you want to film a tree, you have get permission from the squirrel that lives in it' - he wasn't joking. But on the other side of the coin, cardboard robots?
There are plenty of references to past Nerds videos from the obvious like landing the plane to the female soldier disappearing in the water a la the villain Walker in the third live-action TMNT movie. And I found how Rolfe danced around copyrighted material in the film to be somewhat humourous. (Eee Tee instead of E.T. amuses me far more than it should.)
But for me, the biggest issue is that the plot didn't make much sense. I realize that there are films are one will enjoy more the second time because you notice things you missed the first time around but plot points should never be those things.
The Nerd's motivations through the film were pretty simplistic but none of the other characters did. Every character, from the crowds of fans, to the scientist to the deranged accident-prone General to the giant reality-wrecking mutant robot guy (Death Mosses? Death Moses? Death Mach Six? Bob. His name is Bob.) are all pretty one-dimensional. The female characters seem to suffer the most. (Nerds before birds? What? What year is this?)
Having said that, I did like how the cinematography looked. And there are plenty of cameos throughout the film. From the expected like Mike Matei and Kyle Justin, to the unexpected like Lloyd Kaufman. Said cameos go by pretty quick though. I was mad at myself for not noticing the late JewWario's appearance until his name showed up in the credits.
In closing, this is far from the worst film I've ever seen. But I can't honestly see the movie becoming a 'cult classic' either. It's just one of those films that you watch, get a chuckle out of, and then forget about until it pops up again. Although, I am still interested in hearing Rolfe talk about how he made the film, and what his motivations were for certain design choices in the story. Can't be any flimsier than the director of Godzilla 2014's choices for cutting away from the monster fights.