Wow! This was a fun movie. Speed Racer is the second entry in May Movie Mania and it is completely enjoyable. The best of the movie are all of the race sequences. It is amazing to watch the cars zip around the tracks, banging into each other and doing everything necessary to win the races. It’s a very visceral experience (if NASCAR was like this, I’d actually watch racing). The movie relies on a very hyper-reality where the racing is concerned and a more grounded reality when Speed is home with his family.

I was a fan of Speed Racer growing up, loving the original cartoon series. I’ve watched a couple of those episodes because Will picked up a DVD for me. Those are still fun, but this movie takes Speed Racer to a whole new level. It’s still the same story though with Speed racing for his family and being looked out for by Racer X, who is his brother that the family thinks is dead. They major plot element revolves around corruption in the racing circuit.

The reviews on the movie have been mixed to negative, which is too bad because it is a great popcorn movie. I will say that it could be shorter, however; at 2h15m that’s a bit long for movie for kids (the ones at our show got a little squirmy towards the end). Even I thought there were parts of dialog that could have been knocked out, as could a chunk of the factory tour. I think about 20 to 30 minutes could have been trimmed to make a tighter film that might have been reviewed better.

Regardless, I recommend taking it in for its stunning visuals and race sequences. It is worth the price of admission on the big screen.

An interesting trailer that showed up was for Star Wars: The Clone Wars, an animated film that take places between Episode 2-Attack of the Clones and Episode 3-Revenge of the Sith. The animation looks great, but I am leery of the plot since the last three Star Wars movies were pretty awful. It comes out in August, so I’ve still got time to form an opinion. Here’s a look at the trailer…see what you think.