By Paul Hall
I’ve watched every episode of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! more times than I can count. Crime would run rampant in the world if it weren’t for these meddling kids. And if not for the Mystery Machine gang, I would be afraid of ghosts; well, much more afraid is a better statement.
I was excited to see a new movie on the theatrical schedule for 2020 and wondered about its future when the pandemic struck. But Warner Bros. gave us a treat as Scoob! came home via digital rental and purchase on the same date that it was to be available in theaters. No waiting for this one. So grab a sandwich and let’s explore.
The new film starts with a look at how Scoob (voice of Frank Welker) and young Shaggy (Iain Armitage) come to be best friends. Anyone who grew up around the series knows there had to be food involved and, of course, there was a sandwich and some Scooby Snacks present at the meeting. But from day one they are the best of friends.
As the young gang grew together, they found themselves at the center of many mysteries, but the biggest one is on the horizon as Scooby and an adult Shaggy (Will Forte) get kidnapped from a bowling alley and the gang will need to rescue them. Who is behind the kidnapping and can the gang find their friends before it is too late?
Visually this rendition is cool to look at, as bringing all of the gang into a current timeline makes for a bright future for characters we love. The new film uses some great actors for the voice talent as well. Gina Rodriguez is Velma, Zac Efron is Fred and Amanda Seyfried is Daphne. Together they hop in the Mystery Machine van and try to find their friends. Along the way they encounter some well-cast villains and friends from Dick Dastardly (Jason Isaacs) to Blue Falcon (Mark Wahlberg) and Dynomutt (Ken Jeong).
My nostalgia for Scooby fueled much of what I loved about this film. Reminiscing on past capers and fun with the new voice talent enhanced the enjoyment level here. The music is hip and updated a bit, although the story does have a couple of slow moments and feels cut and pasted together. It is the type of film that families are craving right now: Parents can share a piece of their youth, and youth can enjoy the Scooby of the future.
Scoob! is a worthy addition to the lore of Scooby-Doo. It is not a perfect film, but it is quite fun for nostalgia seekers, myself included. What happened to my sandwich?
Paul’s Grade: B
Voices of: Frank Welker, Will Forte, Mark Wahlberg, Jason Isaacs, Gina Rodriguez, Zac Efron, Amanda Seyfried, Ken Jeong
Director: Tony Cervone
Available now to digitally download and enjoy from online retailers everywhere, including iTunes, FandangoNOW, Amazon Prime Video and more.
Plus: Don’t miss Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! as the entire TV series is available on Blu-ray and digital today as well for more Scooby Snacks!