Reviewed by: Caroline Mooney
|Featuring||Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Ricardo Montalban, Holland Taylor, Sylvester Stallone, Mike Judge, Salma Hayek, Matt O'Leary, Emily Osment, Ryan James Pinkston, Robert Vito, Bobby Edner, Courtney Jines, Cheech Marin, Danny Trejo, Alan Cumming, Tony Shalhoub, Steve Buscemi, Bill Paxton, George Clooney, Elijah Wood, Selena Gomez, Evan Sabara, Camille Chen, Steve Wertheimer, Alejandro Rose-Garcia, Lane Turney, Glen Powell Jr., Bob Fonseca, Peter Marquardt, James Paxton|
|Producer||Dimension Films, Los Hooligans Productions, Troublemaker Studios, Elizabeth Avellán, Robert Rodriguez, Bill Scott, Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein|
“3rd Mission. 3rd Dimension.”
My daughters, and fellow critics, have anxiously awaited the release of “Spy Kids 3D:Game Over”, and I must confess to certain anxiety myself, you know, the feeling of imprisonment while being forced to watch a low budget, at best C grade movie for what seems a virtual eternity. I was dead wrong, at least about the C grade, and pleasantly surprised.
“Spy Kids 3D” proved to be a morally pertinent story for children today. With zero profanity, sensuality, and extremely mild violence, in fact, no one gets hurt, my children and I have been able to discuss the film as viewed through a Christian-World-View lens.
In short, “Spy Kids 3D: Game Over” is the story of Juni, a “retired” child spy who returns to work to rescue his older sister, Carmen. Trapped within a video game operated by the evil Toymaker, she remains a captive unless liberated. The rescue attempt is a daunting task, and considered by all to be impossible; yet, Juni appears to be the “chosen one” for such a feat and his love for Carmen provides ample motivation. Aided by his grandfather, a former co-worker, and victim of the toymaker, three young boys, each with their own desires to win, and a young girl whom Juni takes a liking to, the group encounters seemingly overwhelming obstacles meant to prevent both the rescue and the destruction of the evil empire.
The Toymaker, played by Sylvester Stallone, battles fierce internal conflicts revealing a very lonely “bad guy.” He desires to do “the right thing” but his alter egos, characters he created (and also plays) to overcome loneliness, urge him to “do the smart thing” instead, claiming that the “ends justify the means.” Of course, the ending is somewhat predictable but there are a few surprises.
Without giving away the storyline, let me add that the movie addresses issues of family loyalty, trust, and the healing powers of forgiveness, to both the one forgiven and the one forgiving.
While driving home, my daughters and I discussed another observation, that while the movie is definitely low-budget and the paper glasses become irritating, especially due to the fact that one lens is red and the other is yellow, Mr. Rodriguez, the genius behind the movie, has created a wonderful family film, ripe with biblical parallels, truly a rarity in studios of today.
Viewers will glean solid Christian ideals with which they can spark conversation and engage their children. One in particular is the toymaker’s ambition to confiscate the minds of youth. He knows that if he can control their thoughts, he can eventually control the world. Satan’s goal is to distract and separate us from our Lord through worldly activities. When we allow evil to influence our minds, or spend excessive amounts of time satisfying our own lusts, we too become vulnerable.
It is only through a daily relationship with Jesus that we have the hope of overcoming obstacles placed in our paths by the devil.
Little by little, every inch we give to the devil overcrowds our minds while displacing the Spirit of God. Over attention to things offered by the world deafens our ears and hearts to His gentle and quiet voice within us.
Humbly, I offer no “warnings” to parents, and in fact recommend “Spy Kids 3D: Game Over” as a teaching opportunity and fun family entertainment, provided you can stand the low-budget, mediocre acting. Nevertheless, the rewards are rich conversation starters, your very own plastic 3D glasses, and a few thrills from the excitement of imagining yourself inside a video game.
Violence: Mild / Profanity: None / Sex/Nudity: None
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.