Thursday, February 28, 2019

Scooby Doo Meets KISS (2015) [The Deadly Doll's House of Horror Nonsense's The Shortening]

You know you've got it tough as a villain when you're pitted up against the Scooby gang! You think you've got it easy, but then our plans are all foiled by those meddling KISS...

The Scooby gang are 'invited' to a KISS amusement park to solve the mystery of a malevolent witch who's scaring away patrons and tearing attractions apart in her search fr a mysterious rock. Also on the scene is KISS itself, who exhibit strange powers that might be the key to this mystery...

Compared to other entries in the franchise, Scooby Doo Meets KISS is weird! It's your typical latter day Scooby Doo movie. Telling a fun mystery, with a healthy does of irony and sincerity, playing the characters and situations more for laughs than the original series ever did, but still playing it relatively straight (that is, the writers not treating the whole thing as beneath them). This entry has a gimmick, such as the one that went to Wrestlemania, or meeting Batman, but what sets this film apart is its absolutely bizarre story. We get other dimensions, 'alien' species' based in rock and roll lore, Lovecraftian gods, and magical powers! Is all of this really happening though?...I shan't say, but what's certain is that this is at least happening for the majority of the movie, so it still comes off as out-of-place.

While the plot seems pretty clear once the magical elements are introduced, there is still a regular mystery here at play, which unfortunately takes a backseat to all these interdimensional shenanigans. This is annoying, especially as it is still important, despite almost being treated like an amusing afterthought by the movie.

Since this film is headlined by KISS, you'd be right to assume they get a few opportunities to bust out a tune. They're used in moderation, with only about 5 total, counting the opening and ending credits.

The voice acting is pretty hit and miss. The main gang are great as usual, both old members and new (Matthew Lillard was born to play Shaggy! In animation, at any rate), and KISS don't do that bad of a job (certainly better than their turn in Phantom of the Park, one can safely presume), but other performances can get a bit grating, such as the psychic, and the witch. Of note is the presence of Garry and Penny Marshall! They sometimes struggle with the ridiculous dialogue, but at least they keep a straight face.

The animation here is very good. There seem to be a few digital touches (mainly due to the more trippy high concept stuff at play), but it's mostly traditional animation, and it does a good job of being updated while also having the proper Scooby Doo look to everything.

As far as Scooby Doo movies go, this isn't that bad, but it's not the most enjoyable, and is a little too weird at times. Still, it's got a little to recommend it, and it's probably the best KISS related movie we'll ever get...

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