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Horrid Henry: The Movie

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Horrid Henry: The Movie
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"A Horrid Family Film" is the best suited tagline for this movie.
Genre: Comedy
Family
Directed By: Nick Moore
Written By: Lucinda Whiteley
Starring: Theo Stevenson
Richard E. Grant
Anjelica Huston
Photography: Color
Distributed By: Vertigo Films
Release Date: July 29, 2011 (UK)
December, 22 2012 (US)
Runtime: 93 minutes
Country: United Kingdom
Sequel: Untitled Horrid Henry sequel (Upcoming)


Horrid Henry: The Movie is a 2011 British 3D comedy film directed by Nick Moore, starring Theo Stevenson as the titular character. It is based on the books and TV series. The film was the first British film for children to be shot in 3D, and was officially released in cinemas on 29 July 2011 in 2D, RealD 3D, and 3D formats by Vertigo Films in the United Kingdom. In the United States and Canada, Phase 4 Films and Entertainment One released the film in theatres on 22 December 2012.

Plot

After failing to hand in his homework again, Henry sets of a chain of events that will see him and his gang try to foil a headmaster's plan to close down their school, that they claim to hate.

Why It's Horrid

NOTE: Some of the problems were carried from the 2006 show of the same name.

  1. A noticeable problem with the movie is that a lot of the actors don't match their book/cartoon counterparts too well and the way they either look or sound (or both) bears barely any resemblance to how they do in the book/cartoon. Even a few characters have drastically different items of clothing. This is somewhat understandable since this is live-action and there isn't really any people that look 100% accurate to the books/cartoon, but even the live-action adaptation of The Flintstones had more fitting casting choices.
  2. The locations don't look like they do in the books/cartoon. Even Henry's house looks completely different.
  3. Very ugly, poor quality CGI that looks unbelievable for a movie released in cinemas in 2011 in 3D. The biggest, most laughable offender is the scene where Henry turns into a T-Rex. Even Sharknado had better CGI than this.
    • In fact, this certain scene was shown in one of the trailers, and the design is quite different, the CGI (while still terrible) is miles better than the final product. Why this particular change was made still remains a mystery.
  4. While the soundtrack is okay, the album contains a bunch of random pop songs that don’t even appear in the movie, making it less of a soundtrack and more of a Now! That’s What I Call Music album.
  5. While the colour palette of some sets is made of appropriate colours for respective sets and scenes, it is wasted and can sometimes be sickly sweet like in the live-action Cat in the Hat film.
  6. Very weak, generic and predictable plot which just involves Henry trying to save his school from a greedy bad guy, failing the first time, and managing to succeed the second time.
  7. While Prissy Polly (Vomiting Vera's mom) appears in this movie, Pimply Paul (Vomiting Vera's dad) is somewhat absent in this movie without any reason given.
  8. The jokes are either rubbish or heavily reliant on disgusting gross out humor, just like Spy Kids: All the Time in the World.
    • For example, Vera vomits on a sandwich, and Henry’s dad eats it.
  9. Incredibly lousy acting (apart from Theo Stevenson), especially considering those involved.
    • One example of this is Rebecca Front's walking in the scene where Miss Oddbod storms over to the board where students sign up for the talent contest to ban Henry's band. Front appears to be walking in a farcical manner (like in a cartoon which does not work in the context of the scene), swinging her arms childishly from side-to-side.
  10. A very awkward scene where Peter floats in the air after hearing that Miss Lovely might be getting a job at his new school.
    • On that note, this scene is very inappropriate for a kids film, as it indicates that Peter has feelings for Miss Lovely.
  11. Lazy and anti-climatic ending, which involves Henry saving his school just by literally spelling "homework" correctly on a TV show called 2 Cool 4 School. In fact, the final scene of the film is literally just a dance party ending cliché.
  12. Certain characters are introduced right out of nowhere, most of them not even having any plot relevance, the biggest offender being Vicious Vicky.
  13. The pacing for certain scenes is often dreadful and cringey. These include:
    • The scene where Henry inadvertently hits Miss Lovely with goo (planted by the inspectors).
    • The aforementioned following scene (see WIH #9) where Miss Oddbod bans Henry and his friends.
  14. The villain isn't even very threatening, as he mostly just brags about his evil plan while getting a duo of corrupt school inspectors to try and frame Henry. He also fails to notice Peter tying his shoe laces together which causes him to fall out the window while trying to run away.
  15. Pointless cameo from Dick and Dom (as the 2 Cool 4 School hosts).
  16. Since Henry is older than Peter, he should be at least one grade above him. So why does Henry's class have to join with Peter's? Are there only two classes the only ones in the entirety of Ashton Primary School?
  17. A very disturbing scene for a kids movie where Soggy Sid laughs as he tries to trap Henry in the Bog of Doom. While Henry would obviously not be in danger and Sid does have a legitimate reason for hating him, the fact that he would take so much pleasure in doing this to a 9-11 year old boy calls into question why he was even hired to be a teacher in the first place.
  18. The choice of making the movie live-action despite the original series being animated can make the movie very awkward to watch.
    • While we're on the subject, there's no reason for the movie being live-action. The film is shot and edited the way an animated film would be.
  19. Much like Dinotopia: Quest for the Ruby Sunstone, this movie dumbs the franchise down in ways that are insulting and frustrating.
  20. Terrible direction by Nick Moore.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Decent soundtrack. Some of the songs are pretty catchy such as "Gonna Be A Rockstar".
  2. While he doesn't look 100% like the main character's book/cartoon counterpart, Theo Stevenson isn't that bad as Henry.
  3. It's actually pretty faithful to the source material, containing references to both the books and show, such as the theme song from the cartoon being used in one scene.
  4. Henry doesn't lose at the end.
  5. Miss Battle-Axe and Moody Margaret are both more tolerable and likable than their counterparts in the books and show.

Reception

Horrid Henry: The Movie received generally negative reviews by critics for its script, quality and humour. It was even criticized by fans of the TV Series as well.

Despite this, however, the film has gained a significant cult following, which caused the movie airing on Nicktoons in 2019, to be a success.

Sequel

In a January 2020 interview with Novel Entertainment after the success of Horrid Henry: The Movie's airing on Nicktoons, executive producer Lucinda Whiteley said she was "absolutely (working on a sequel)! And not just one but two sequels, as the story of how Henry ends up saving the world needs more than just 90 minutes!".

Trivia

  • A few of the scenes have actually been adapted in the cartoon itself, mainly in the Season 4 episode "Horrid Henry's Movie Moments".

Videos

Trailer

Behind The Scenes

Reviews

Comments

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