35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Fascinating Locale Offers Tricks and Treats for All
The Scooby-Doo movies of recent years have been generally warmly welcomed in our household. They tend to be of two schools: 1) more silly than serious, low on mystery, and catering to a young audience (Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School or Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf come to mind) and 2) more serious than silly, emphasizing mystery, and catering to an older...
Published on October 20, 2003 by Thomas H. Ayers
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Decent Reunion At Best
The best way to begin is to show you where I stand. I think "Zombie Island" and "The Witch's Ghost" were excellent. I didn't much care for "Alien Invasion" or "Cyber Chase." I thought "The Legend of the Vampire" was a surprisingly good return to form. Onto chapter six. I can't really say this is one of Scooby's better movies. It kind of lacks the punch and surprises of...
Published on April 18, 2005 by Bradley Headstone
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Fascinating Locale Offers Tricks and Treats for All,
The Scooby-Doo movies of recent years have been generally warmly welcomed in our household. They tend to be of two schools: 1) more silly than serious, low on mystery, and catering to a young audience (Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School or Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf come to mind) and 2) more serious than silly, emphasizing mystery, and catering to an older audience (Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island or Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders come to mind). My wife and I enjoy Scooby-Doo and watch it with our children, but we try to stay away from the sillier films. This movie, Scooby-Doo and the Monster of Mexico, looked to be of the more serious variety, so we bought it. Here are my thoughts:
The Animation: The first thing I noticed was that the movie opens with some nice animation eye-candy. (Generally, key scenes seem to begin with some startling visual, such as rippling water or flickering flames.) I thought the quasi-3D animation was a nice change from that seen on some of the previous Scooby-Doo movies.
The Plot: It is a more serious film: Fred's friends from Mexico are being terrorized by a monster of local legend prior to the Day of the Dead. Is the monster real or the fabrication of criminal minds? What differentiates this from the standard Scooby-Doo plot is the emphasis on the Mexican culture. Local customs (i.e. Day of the Dead) are introduced and explained. The folks in the Mexican village are treated respectfully. The gang and the audience learn some Spanish. This intimacy with the culture makes the monster's threat more significant. You do care what happens to Fred's friends and their neighbors. Initially, the plot seemed rather weak: the first half of the film deals with tracking a monster and the second half deals with the mystery. I wanted more mystery, but it seemed to take the gang a long time to realize that some detective work was required. Upon reflection, I see that the pacing was deliberate to allow the locals to contribute significantly to the gang's detective work; it's a group effort.
The Problem: I enjoyed this movie until the obligatory chase scene, which grew increasingly incredible. I thought I had the mystery all figured out--I was disappointed that I was way ahead of Velma so soon--and then found myself confused by the strange events occurring during the chase. Although all is explained later--and more satisfactorily than in Legend of the Vampire--I thought it was too over-the-top. It didn't help that the accompanying song grew rather tedious. Also, it made the movie feel too long.
Overall: I enjoyed this movie, especially its respect for Mexican culture and the Mexican characters, which, not being dumbed down, reacted normally toward some of the weird events, especially near the end. I dislike the obligatory chase scene, but I realize that this is for the young audience (my son loved this part). I would have preferred more mystery, but it does play out rather naturally. Considering the reactions of both myself and my children, I recommend this latest installment in the Scooby-Doo movie series. Although it has its flaws, I think it makes for a pretty good time. Adults will like it, and kids will probably love it.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Scooby-Doo ever?!,
Upon first viewing of this new movie with my five-year-old son, I was prepared to declare it as somewhat disappointing and meandering.
But when the credits rolled, my son looked at me with a big smile and declared, "That was the best Scooby-Doo ever!"
So, what do I know? I bow to his critique and award this movie a full five stars.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vera Cruz and Mexico City Views by Scooby and the Gang,
We (spouse and children and I) just viewed this DVD tonight and are extremely pleased. The familiar "bad-guy-caught-at-the-end" format is used as well as the typical Scooby Doo format of mishaps with the Mystery Machine, food-hungry Scooby & Shaggy, red herrings, ballads, etc. plus a very mild love-interest for Scooby. The clothes and vocals are just like the original series, too.
What really caught our attention was the similar style to the original televsion series when Scooby and the gang visited various locations and learned things about the places they visited. Having visited Vera Cruz and Mexico City, we were struck by the similarities with the cartoon animation of Vera Cruz and Mexico City. We were also pleased to see Mexico/Mexicans portrayed in a positive way rather than as sterotypes.-There is even some basic Spanish used in a way to educate youngsters.
The cupacabra (evil monster/ goatsucker) which frightened tourists from Vera Cruz was a bit dated, but caused us to recall the scare which griped Mexico a few years ago.
We liked the voices and animation and were pleased to see the familar format of catching the bad guys in the end ("those meddeling kids"...) unlike some other recent Scobby DVD's where the monsters/witches are real. The cultural nuances and theme of "things are not always the way the seem" was also educational.
The only negative about this DVD is that the languages are English and French with Spanish available only in subtitles. One would think the title would suggest a DVD with vocals in Spanish...
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Scooby Doo Movie,
By A Customer
This review is from: Scooby Doo & The Monster of Mexico [VHS] (VHS Tape)
I got this for my 3 year old SD fan. He loves it and has enjoyed it consistently over the many times he's viewed it. The plot may be a little thin for the older set, the chase scene was pretty wild and out-in-left-field, but the animation, music, and portrayal of Mexican culture was great.
What matters most is, it's kids movie and my kids love it. If your child or children are rabid Scooby Doo fans like mine, this is a worthwhile investment.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scooby Doo Rocks,
By A Customer
This New Scooby-Doo movie rocks. The plot is great! Scooby even gets a little romance in Mexico, with a chiwuawau. You get to see into the individual houses of the Mystery Inc. gang and they chat together. The characters are all voiced by the original cast members except for Scooby who is voiced by Frank Welker. The mystery has a few little twists, but not as many and so confusing as Legend of the Vampire. Daphne even gets captured, which I really liked because that is like classic Scooby. There is even a gag reference to Legend of the Vampire when they run by a theater which is showing the movie. This movie is worth buying.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good film for Scooby fans!,
It was nice to know that initially, after Warner Bros. Animation began making direct-to-video Scooby-Doo movies in 1998, that they didn't forget about those who preferred the classics. (I do enjoy the previous movies made before this one, except for "Alien Invaders.") In wake of the live-action Scooby-Doo feature film, and their then-new (and pretty crappy) "What's New Scooby-Doo" animated series, Warner Bros. Animation decided to try a different approach for their direct-to-video movies. Abandoning the more dark, suspenseful and fantasy-oriented style the first four movies had (though "Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase" was the more light-hearted one of the four), they decided to go for a more retro approach for "Scooby-Doo and the Legend of the Vampire," in a manner similar to the "Night of the Living Doo" TV special produced in a similar retro format (except that was produced by Cartoon Network, not Warner Bros.) This was also carried over to this movie, and really helps it. Had it been produced in a different style, several of the things in the story would not have worked. Unfortunately, they abandoned this style in 2004, when the executive suits took over and retooled them into a more realistic style, basically rendering the 2004-2009 movies into 70-minute episodes of "What's New, Scooby-Doo," that lasted until a much-needed improving came with "Abracadabra-Doo" in 2010.
But enough of that; on to reviewing this movie. While this movie is indeed pretty fun, I didn't enjoy it as much as "Scooby-Doo and the Legend of the Vampire." I am a little annoyed how they went and changed the Chupacabra into a purple hairy Bigfoot-wannabe instead of the reptilian monster according to original Spanish legends. Many of the Mexican cultures are also depicted in the same stereotypical manner as the Speedy Gonzales cartoons (no surprise, as Warner Bros. Animation DID make this movie.) However, Warner did a great job making the movie look and sound like Hanna-Barbera made it; an interesting change from the more Warner/anime-esque style used in the first four movies, along with the Adelaide Productions-influenced style (think "Jackie Chan Adventures," "Men in Black: the Animated Series" and "The Boondocks") used on "What's New Scooby-Doo" and the 2004-2009 direct-to-video movies. The original Scooby-Doo designer Iwao Takamoto was heavily involved with this movie, and it really shows. I also really loved hearing Velma's original voice again, along with Heather North as Daphne (her main voice from 1970 to 1986), and of course Casey Kasem as Shaggy (though the voice was obviously aging by this time) and Frank Welker pulling double-duty as Scooby-Doo and Fred (the latter having been his original voice since 1969!) The vintage Hanna-Barbera sound effects are also used heavily to enhance the "retro" feel, something "What's New Scooby-Doo" and many of the other movies (except "Vampire" and "Mask of the Blue Falcon") are sorely missing, and the soundtrack often consists of synthesized contemporary remixes of the classic late 1960s Scooby-Doo music pieces (similar to "Legend of the Vampire," except many here are given a more "Mariachi" flavor to keep with the Mexico theme.) With the exception of the film's Mexico-themed "Viva Las Vegas" parody ("Viva Mexico"), the vocal songs are not that memorable.
The animation is pure eye candy, but I will admit it's not as retro-looking as the Scooby-Doo movies and TV specials made since 2010 (we even have the whites on the characters' eyes here, unlike in the older shows and the recent movies!) There are some bits where we get a bit of nice full animation, but there are also some bits where it seems to slow down. The story does linger a bit at times, but the comedy and action sequences all make up for that.
And another thing I enjoy; this film is very cartoony, like the older shows were! The first four movies, as well as many of the recent ones, are done in a more "fantasy" type of style that somewhat fits with the supernatural plots, and the 2004-2009 movies and "What's New, Scooby-Doo" were made to look and sound more like real life instead of a cartoon. There is quite a bit of slapstick, and nearly everyone seems to have a hint of that classic Hanna-Barbera cartoony trait to them. The mystery is also doubled here, in order to make it fit with the extended running time, a problem many later movies had.
The DVD special features I really enjoyed were the audio commentary by Shaggy, Scooby-Doo and Fred (I actually tend to enjoy when this happens on cartoon DVDs, like on a couple of the "Ren and Stimpy" DVD sets), along with the "making of" featurette and the fake "bloopers" (there's a particularly fun set of "outtakes" where Scooby-Doo keeps trying to pull the rubber mask off a living skeleton, each time with a fun reveal such as Scrappy-Doo (don't worry, he doesn't speak!), repeated skull masks underneath each skull, Yogi Bear, Fred Flintstone, even another Scooby!)
Definitely worth it if you are a big Scooby-Doo fan and also enjoy the classics a lot. It's too bad no more movies (or even a series) were produced like this!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scooby-Doo is a child's video hero.,
I, for one, am glad that they keep making Scooby-Doo movies. The old stuff is still fun to watch and the new ones are great for me and my nearly 3 year old son. I have to admit though, El Chupacabra from this movie and the ghosts from The Boo Brothers is scary for my son to watch at nighttime so I don't offer it as a choice at night. In this day and age of foul mouths and violence on TV, I am glad to offer Scooby-Doo as a choice for my son.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, a Good Scooby-Doo movie,
I've been a fan of Scooby-Doo since about 1978 and I have recently been very unhappy with how Warner Bros. has seemed to destroy everything Hanna Barbera made so great. Hanna Barbera cartoons have always had a certain feel to them, that was very distinguishable from a Warner cartoon, but since Ted Turner merged with Aol the Scooby franchise has seen some rough times. Finally, and being a hardcore fan, I can say Finally they have made a good Scooby movie. While I will always favor the darker, more stark look of the first three series, this atleast has a Scooby feel and plot. The last movie they put out, Legend of the Vampire, was so misguided it became boring. This movie, though, has a great feel...and i will even overlook the fact the main monster is a rip off of the old Jaguara!!! Enjoy the movie Scooby fans, my guess is Warner got more lucky than anything else.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius Scooby movie,
This tale of the Chupacabra legend was very well achieved, I love the fact that the Scooby Doo gang is traveling in the new series, LOVE the new theme song, but the old one is still my favorite, the mexican characters are quite accurate, good accents, the right attire, and totally love the song in Spanish during the chase at the ruins, in many of the latest episodes the gang has evolved with the times, we see Daphne with a cell phone, they also have lab tops and the music is according with the situation and the place,.. I will keep collecting, I love them.!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars lots of laughs,
This review is from: Scooby-Doo and the Monster of Mexico (Amazon Instant Video)
This movie made my children laugh. My 3 young children love the classic scooby doo episodes and now want to watch some movies. They really enjoyed Monster in Mexico. It is fairly true to the origional episodes in plot and goofy physical comedy. They also enjoyed the Samurai Sword movie. They found the Zombie Island movie very scary and not really funny at all. Zombie Island lacked in the physical comedy that makes Scooby Doo so great and the bad guys were REALLY bad.
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Scooby-Doo & the Monster of Mexico by Scott Jeralds (DVD - 2003)