The Simpsons have been on TV in their own series for 18 years now. Last year it was announced that The Simpsons Movie was coming in 2007. There had been talks as far back as 1992 to try and get a Simpsons movie made, and while the past few seasons haven’t always been as funny as the first ten or so, I still enjoy the weekly antics of Homer, Bart, Lisa, Marge, Maggie, and all the denizens of Springfield. However there were many people who say The Simpsons isn’t as funny as it used to be and that the time for a big screen adventure was five or ten years ago. I’m not one of those people.
The plot focuses on Homer. This time the harmless deed of adopting a pig leads to a disastrous environmental incident that results in Springfield becoming the most polluted city on the planet and the EPA sealing it off in a giant dome. This causes the citizens of Springfield to riot and once again call for Homer’s blood, leading to a common Simpsons plot: stay and face the mob, or flee and worry about it later. If you’ve seen the show you can guess which choice is made.
The movie was produced for the big screen and it shows; the quality of animation is better than the television show. Unlike some shows which try to string several episodes together and call it one big episode, this film has a beginning, middle, and end with a satisfying conclusion and I wasn’t left with the feeling that this should have just been done on TV. The Simpsons Movie is funny, smart, and pokes fun at the things it should (organized religion, big business, and the audience itself), just as it’s done for years.
The DVD extras include:
- Commentary by James L. Brooks, Matt Groening, Dan Castellaneta, and Yeardly Smith
- Several deleted scenes that, while funny, didn’t advance the plot, but it’s nice to see them here
- Homer’s monologue for The Tonight Show
- Homer’s intro to American Idol
- The Simpsons as judges for American Idol
- All the trailers for the movie
This movie isn’t just for fans of the show; animation fans around the world loved it and its box office totals proved that the world still loves The Simpsons. I hope, like Maggie asks during the closing credits, “Sequel?” and I hope they don’t wait another 18 years to make another one.