'Scooby-Doo 1 & 2 Collection' [Blu-ray]
(Freddie Prinze Jr., Sarah Michelle Gellar, Matthew Lillard, Linda Cardellini, et al / Blu ray / NR / 2010 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: Laughs and scares aplenty are unleashed in these two popular live-action/computer-animation romps featuring Fred (Freddie Prinze Jr.), Daphne (Sarah Michelle Gellar), Shaggy (Matthew Lillard), Velma (Linda Cardellini) and that canine you-know-doo.
Blu ray Verdict: Already out on DVD as a double-bill, but first time here on Blu ray, if you have a Blu ray player and love these two films, you have to purchase this new set!
Anyway, back in the day, before I saw the movie, I was skeptical of the cast selections of Freddie Prinze Jr and Sarah Michele Geller, but after seeing it, I think they did a great job. Linda Cardellini made Velma more than a brain and Matthew Lillard IS Shaggy. The entire cast did an incredible job of bringing to life some beloved cartoon characters.
The movie itself was like a longer, live-action, episode of the classic cartoons. Some people would say that some of the action was predictable, but when have you watched the cartoon and not known when the gang was going to split up, or Shaggy and Scooby were going to run away from a ghost, etc? The cartoons followed a formula, and the movie doesn't change it.
And it was funny. Indeed, a lot of people have made a big to-do about the "in jokes" of Scooby Doo. When I was a kid watching the show, the only thing I understood that was never said was that Fred and Daphne were boyfriend/girlfriend. And that's all I got from the movie. Maybe I wasn't looking hard enough, or I didn't want to see anything else. In any case, I'm glad the movie makers kept the spirit of the cartoons unchanged.
In the sequel, 'Monster's Unleashed,' everything is done even better! The production quality (the sets, the costumes, the colors, the monsters) is larger than life. You can really tell they put a lot of effort to make this movie feel right like in the Scooby cartoons universe.
The characters personalities and their relationships and place in the group are explored even further. If the first film brought these characters to life, this one really makes you feel for each member of Mystery Inc. They grew a lot in the first one, but they mature in different aspects in this one.
The movie is even zanier and wackier than the first, yet it has its touching moments of character growth, sometimes it even feels like a little romantic comedy wrapped up in a hilarious (sometimes spooky) cartoonish environment.
They did really well in giving a positive message of finding your true self and staying true to it, which I think is a plus, since you feel like you learned something good while having fun. That's sometimes hard to see when they bring cartoon characters to life, but they managed to do an excellent job in this film, in every aspect.
Every Scooby fan will just love it, its the cartoon brought to life and made even better. You'll watch it again and again. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.77:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.