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“Monster Trucks” demolished by thin story line

Surreal car flick proves to be a lemon

<p>The animated action film hit theaters Jan. 13.</p>

The animated action film hit theaters Jan. 13.

Lucas Till deserves credit for leaving it all on the field, and in “Monster Trucks,” he really tries his hardest. Even his best efforts, however, could not salvage a storyline involving a mysterious endangered creature inhabiting a vehicle.

High school student Tripp — played by Till — wants nothing more than to get away from his small town. The movie begins with Tripp hoping to fix up a truck at the junkyard so he can visit his father, who abandoned him as a kid. Then, all of a sudden the lonely handsome — model like — high school student meets a small, computer-animated blob. “Creech” — unlike Till — is only somewhat cute.

After meeting Creech, Tripp and his love interest Meredith (Jane Levy) go on an adventure to return Creech to his rightful home. However, Tripp and Meredith’s efforts hit a roadblock when they discover Creech’s family is being held captive by an oil drilling company called Terravex.

The president of Terravex (Rob Lowe) and a Terravex scientist named Jim (Thomas Lennon) attempt to provide some much-needed comedic relief. There’s an amusing scene in which Jim plays Simon Says with Creech’s family members based on their ability to perfectly match color patterns. However, Creech is the funniest character in the movie, which says more about the other characters than it does about Creech. The rest of the cast is outclassed by a small animated blue blob who cannot speak.

The film deserves credit for it’s nod to environmental issues and promotion of teamwork and acceptance. In the end, Jim, Meredith and Tripp work together and drive three monster-possessed trucks down some pretty rugged terrain. They defeat the bad guys and successfully return Creech and his family to their nest in the ocean. Tripp and Creech exchange a heartwarming goodbye, and in the end Tripp rides off into the sunset with his girl.

The movie is a wonderful time for six-year-olds, but adults will bristle at the endless green-screens, hackneyed plot and strange conceit centered around an anthropomorphic blob. Hopefully, Paramount will not make a sequel and further promote this lemon. The world does not need yet another stalled series filled with outdated plush toys and an even more tired storyline. 

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