Combustible Celluloid
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With: (voices) Cathy Cavadini, Tara Strong, E.G. Daily, Roger L. Jackson, Tom Kane, Tom Kenny, Jennifer Hale, Jennifer Martin, Jeff Bennett, Grey DeLisle, Phil LaMarr, Rob Paulsen, Kevin Michael Richardson, Dee Bradley Baker, Frank Welker
Written by: Charlie Bean, Lauren Faust, Craig McCracken, Paul Rudish, Don Shank, Amy Keating Rogers
Directed by: Craig McCracken
MPAA Rating: PG for non-stop frenetic animated action
Running Time: 73
Date: 06/22/2002

The Powerpuff Girls Movie (2002)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Who You Calling Cute?

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Craig McCracken's amazing Cartoon Network series ran from 1998 to 2005 (and returned in 2013). For this terrific feature-length movie, the creative team chose to tell the origin story, dealing with the problems of the girls adapting to life in Townsville with their super-powers, and learning about the basics of life (such as the game of tag). Villain Mojo mojo (voiced by Roger Jackson) tries to fool them into do his evil bidding.

Blossom (voiced by Cathy Cavadini), Buttercup (voiced by Elizabeth Daily), and Bubbles (voiced by Tara Strong) are tough and adorable, like a cross between Smurfs and Superman. The artwork is hand-drawn with a focus on basic colors and simple circles and straight lines; the movement is swift and clean, with inspired use of shapes and shadows. The jokes avoid pop culture references and are simply based on the situation, or ridiculous ideas like the mayor's love of pickles.

Somehow the movie did not perform well, and the girls were never asked back to multiplexes again. It's a shame because we could always use a good girl superhero movie.

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