The Simpsons have been on TV for eighteen years—the second-longest running primetime program behind 60 Minutes. So unless you've been in the Peace Corps for a good chunk of that time or simply don't watch any television, you probably already have an opinion about America's favorite animated family.

The show's creators know this, and, in a stroke of genius, use it to their advantage in the uproariously funny self-aware opening to The Simpsons Movie. Let's face it. Most television shows don't translate well to the big screen, and that's especially true for 15- or 30-minute cartoons that don't have the depth or nuance to expand into feature length. But The Simpsons, with its broad range of slapstick and satire, effortlessly stretches to four times the usual length of a 22-minute episode, yielding one of the most successful television-to-cinema transplants I've ever seen: "Best … feature-length … episode … ever."

OK, as a fan who knows most every episode forward and backward, I admit I'm a bit biased. Since the show's start during my high school years, The Simpsons played a formative role in developing my sense of humor (for better or worse). And while I never tire watching the classic episodes, I've grown disenchanted with the show in recent years, which I attribute to changes in the writing staff.

If you agree that The Simpsons has soured somewhat over the last five years, fear not. The Simpsons Movie reunites several of the veterans responsible for the golden age of the series, including creator Matt Groening, director David Silverman (Monsters, Inc.), and contributing writers James L. Brooks, Al Jean, John Swartzwelder, David Mirkin, Ian-Maxtone-Graham, among others—eleven writers, four consultants, ...

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The Simpsons Movie
Our Rating
3½ Stars - Good
Average Rating
 
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Mpaa Rating
PG-13 (for irreverent humor throughout)
Directed By
David Silverman
Run Time
1 hour 27 minutes
Cast
Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith
Theatre Release
July 27, 2007 by 20th Century Fox
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