As I sat in the theater waiting for the screening of The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie to begin, I was surrounded by more than a hundred little kids with their parents-Radio Disney contest winners, along with some other film critics who brought their young ones along. They bounced excitedly in their seats, waiting for the film to start. When the Radio Disney representatives asked some simple trivia questions for a pre-show prize giveaway, the kids screamed so loudly, you'd swear they'd just been offered a trip to the moon. The funny part is, despite the calmer exterior, I suspect a lot of the adults in the theater were probably almost as excited. Including me.

I was glad to get the SpongeBob movie assignment because I am also a fan of America's favorite sea sponge "who lives in a pineapple under the sea." The TV show SpongeBob Squarepants is the most-watched kids' show in television history largely because its audience reaches beyond children. Like VeggieTales, the classic Warner Brothers shorts, and Rocky & Bullwinkle, SpongeBob has a cult following with adults and college students. And why not? It's good comedy offering plenty of adult-oriented satire and real world gags sprinkled throughout the animated slapstick.

The big question, of course, is whether or not this film will appeal to anyone who isn't already acquainted with the show. I don't think it will, for several reasons. The movie doesn't introduce viewers to the characters and the setting, but instead assumes you've watched the show enough to want to see the silly antics in a theater. Unless you're a well-versed SpongeBob fanatic, this is not your movie.

Things start with Mr. Krabs opening a second fast food restaurant (and next door to the original Krusty Krab, no ...

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The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie
Our Rating
2½ Stars - Fair
Average Rating
(3 user ratings)ADD YOURSHelp
Mpaa Rating
PG (for mild crude humor)
Directed By
Stephen Hillenburg, Mark Osborne
Run Time
1 hour 27 minutes
Tom Kenny, Clancy Brown, Rodger Bumpass, Bill Fagerbakke
Theatre Release
November 19, 2004 by Paramount Pictures
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