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The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl (also known simply as Sharkboy and Lavagirl) is a 2005 American adventure film[1], directed and written by Robert Rodriguez and originally released in the United States on June 10, 2005 by Miramax Films, Columbia Pictures and Dimension Films[2]. The film uses the anaglyph 3-D technology, similar to the one used in Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over. The film stars Taylor Lautner, Taylor Dooley, Cayden Boyd, David Arquette, Kristin Davis, and George Lopez. Many of the concepts and much of the story were conceived by Rodriguez's children. The special effects were done by Hybride Technologies, CafeFX, The Orphanage, Post Logic, Hydraulx, Industrial Light & Magic, R!ot Pictures, Tippett Studio, Amalgamated Pixels, Intelligent Creatures, and Troublemaker Digital. The film received negative reviews from critics with much of the criticism directed at the decision to post-convert the film into 3-D which damaged the film's visual look and earned $69.4 million on a $50 million budget.

A stand-alone sequel, We Can Be Heroes, will be released to Netflix in 2021, with Lautner and Dooley reprising their roles.

Summary

A lonely boy's imaginary friends came to life. They're superheroes, but they need him to save their planet!

Plot

Max is a lonely child in the suburbs of Austin who creates an imaginary dreamworld named Planet Drool, where all of his dreams come to life. He creates two characters; Sharkboy, who was raised by sharks after losing his father at sea, and Lavagirl, who can produce fire and lava, but has trouble touching objects without setting them alight. The two left Max to guard Planet Drool. In reality, Max's parents have little time for him, and their marital relationship is not going well. Max is also bullied by fellow schoolmate Linus. However, he does receive friendship from Marissa, the daughter of his teacher Mr. Electricidad, whose name is Spanish for "electricity". After a chase, Linus steals Max's dream journal (where all of his most precious dreams are kept) and vandalizes it. The next day, as Max attempts to retaliate, twin tornadoes form outside the school. Sharkboy and Lavagirl emerge from the tornadoes and have Max accompany them to Planet Drool, which he learns is turning bad because of Mr. Electric, the dreamworld's ruler and now-corrupt electrician.

They confront Mr. Electric, who attacks them and drops them in the Dream Graveyard, where some of Max's dreams have been dumped. They find Tobor, a robot toy that Max never finished building in the real world after being discouraged by his father. Tobor gives them a lift to other parts of the planet. The three form a friendship during their journey, but they face hardships, such as Sharkboy's anger for the oceans being frozen over, and Lavagirl's desperation to find her true purpose on Planet Drool. They are pursued by Mr. Electric and his plughounds across the planet. They plan to visit the Ice Princess and obtain the Crystal Heart, which can freeze time, giving them enough time to get to the center of Planet Drool and fix the dreamworld using Max's daydreaming. However, they are captured by Mr. Electric and delivered to Linus's Planet Drool incarnation Minus, who has altered the dreamworld with Max's own dream journal, and traps the three in a cage. Sharkboy gets annoyed by Minus and has a shark frenzy, destroying the cage. After they escape, Max retrieves the dream journal from Minus while he is sleeping. Max informs Sharkboy that his father is alive in his book, but when Lavagirl wishes to learn what it says about her true identity, she burns the book to ash. In rage, Lavagirl asks Max why she was made out of lava, but Sharkboy tells him to let her cool down.

After an encounter with the Ice Guardian, Max, Sharkboy, and Lavagirl reach the Ice Princess, the Planet Drool incarnation of Marissa Electricidad. She hands over the Crystal Heart, but they are too late to stop the corruption since the Ice Princess is the only one who can use the Crystal Heart's power, and she cannot leave her home. Mr. Electric tricks Sharkboy into jumping into water filled with electric eels, seemingly killing him. Lavagirl also dies after jumping into the water to retrieve Sharkboy. Tobor appears and convinces Max to dream a better and unselfish dream, which, in turn, revives Sharkboy, who then races Lavagirl to a volcano to revive her. Max concludes that her purpose is as a light against the dark clouds which have engulfed Planet Drool's skies. Max gains reality warping as the Daydreamer and defeats Minus in battle, then offers to make a better dreamworld between the two of them, to which Minus agrees.

Following Minus' reformation, Mr. Electric refuses to accept the new dreamworld and flies to Earth to kill Max while he is dreaming. Max awakens back in his classroom during the tornado storm. Mr. Electric materializes, and Max's parents get sucked into the storm, but are saved by Sharkboy and Lavagirl. Max gives the Crystal Heart to Marissa so she can use the Ice Princess's powers to destroy Mr. Electric. Max, Mr. Electricidad, and Linus make peace with one another and Max reunites with his parents.

Max later informs his class that Planet Drool became a proper dreamworld again, Sharkboy became the King of the Ocean, and Lavagirl became Queen of the Volcanoes, and as the film shows Max finally finishing Tobor, he reminds the class to "dream a better dream, and work to make it real".

Cast

Production

Parts of the film were shot on location in Texas, where Max resides and goes to school in the film. Much of the film was shot in a studio against green screen. Most of the ships, landscapes and other effects including some creatures and characters, were accomplished digitally. According to Lautner and Dooley, when filming the scene with the dream train, the front part of the train was an actual physical set piece. "The whole inside was there and when they have all the gadgets you can pull on, that was all there but everything else was a green screen," said Dooley.[9] Eleven visual effects companies (Hybride, CafeFX, The Orphanage, Post Logic, Hydraulx, Industrial Light & Magic, R!ot Pictures, Tippett Studio, Amalgamated Pixels and Intelligent Creatures and Rodriguez's Texas-based Troublemaker Digital) worked on the film in order to accomplish over 1,000 visual effect shots.[10]

Robert Rodriguez appears in the credits fourteen times, most notably as director, a producer, a screenwriter (along with Marcel Rodriguez), visual effects supervisor, director of photography, editor, a camera operator, and a composer and performer. The story is credited to Racer Max Rodriguez, with additional story elements by Rebecca Rodriguez, who also wrote the lyrics for the main song, "Sharkboy and Lavagirl". Other members of the Rodriguez family can be seen in the film or were involved in the production.

Miley Cyrus auditioned for the film with Lautner, and she said it came down to between her and another girl, but Cyrus started doing Hannah Montana instead.[11]

Reception

Critical response

The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3-D received overwhelmingly negative reviews from critics, with a 19% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, claiming that "The decision to turn this kiddie fantasy into a 3-D film was a miscalculation."[2] Roger Ebert gave the film 2 out of 4 stars and agreed with the other criticisms in which the 3-D process used was distracting and muted the colors, thus, he believes, "spoiling" much of the film and that the film would look more visually appealing when released in the home media market.[12]

Box office

For its opening weekend, the film earned $12,582,088, averaging $4,739 per screen in 2,655 theaters. It also was placed #5 at the box office, being overshadowed by Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Madagascar, and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.[13] The film was not very successful in the US, taking in $39,177,541. However, it did manage to gross $30,248,282 overseas, and a total of $69,425,966 worldwide, which makes the film a minor success.[14]

Lawsuit

The Total Nonstop Action professional wrestler Dean Roll, who trademarked the name "Shark Boy" in 1999, filed a lawsuit against Miramax on June 8, 2005, claiming that his trademark had been infringed and demanding "[any] money, profits and advantages wrongfully gained". In the April of 2007, the suit was settled for an undisclosed amount.[15]

Soundtrack

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack: The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D
various artists
Released June 10, 2005
Length 43:26
Label Varèse Sarabande

Director Robert Rodriguez composed parts of the score himself, with contributions by composers John Debney and Graeme Revell. Green Day were reportedly set to contribute "Wake Me Up When September Ends" to the soundtrack, but Robert Rodriguez declined it.

Track listing

  • "The Shark Boy"
  • "The Lava Girl"
  • "Max's Dream"
  • "Sharkboy and Lavagirl Return"
  • "Planet Drool"
  • "Mount Never Rest"
  • "Passage of Time"
  • "Mr. Electric"
  • "Train of Thought"
  • "Dream Dream Dream Dream (Dream Dream)"
  • "Stream of Consciousness"
  • "Sea of Confusion"
  • "The LaLa's"
  • "The Ice Princess"
  • "Sharkboy vs. Mr. Electric"'
  • "Lavagirl's Sacrifice"
  • "The Light"
  • "Battle of the Dreamers"
  • "Mr. Electric on Earth"
  • "Unplugged"
  • "The Day Dreamer"
  • "Sharkboy and Lavagirl"

Books

Around the time of the film's debut Rodriguez co-wrote a series of children's novels entitled Sharkboy and Lavagirl Adventures with acclaimed science fiction writer Chris Roberson. They include Book 1, The Day Dreamer, and Book 2, Return to Planet Drool, which announces that it will be continued in a third volume, Deep Sleep, which has yet to appear. They are illustrated throughout by Alex Toader, who designed characters and environments for the film and the previous Spy Kids franchise.[16]

Jeff Jensen of Entertainment Weekly praised another book appearing around the time of the film, The Adventures of SharkBoy and LavaGirl: The Movie Storybook (by Racer Max Rodriguez and Robert Rodriguez), as a far cry from the usual movie storybook tie-in, and also praised Toader's "cartoony yet detailed" illustrations.[17]

Stand-alone sequel

In an interview during the 2020 Comic-Con@Home event, Rodriguez confirmed that a character in his upcoming film We Can Be Heroes is the daughter of Sharkboy and Lavagirl who has both "shark and lava powers". Dooley is confirmed to reprise her role in the film as Lavagirl.[18] The film is scheduled to be released through Netflix.

References

  1. https://web.archive.org/web/20190624173030/https://catalog.afi.com/Catalog/moviedetails/63298
  2. 2.0 2.1 http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the-adventures-of-sharkboy-and-lavagirl-in-3d/
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 http://teacher.scholastic.com/scholasticnews/indepth/sharkboylavagirl.asp
  4. http://www.kidzworld.com/article/5707-taylor-lautner-interview
  5. https://web.archive.org/web/20080123081214/http://www.movieweb.com/dvd/news/19/9319.php
  6. http://www.vh1.com/movies/news/articles/1610455/20090501/story.jhtml?rsspartner=rss
  7. http://movies.radiofree.com/interviews/theadves_taylor_dooley_taylor_lautner_cayden_boyd.shtml
  8. http://movies.radiofree.com/interviews/theadves_george_lopez_robert_rodriguez.shtml
  9. http://www.teenhollywood.com/d.asp?r=99961&cat=1038&p=7
  10. https://web.archive.org/web/20081207031559/http://mag.awn.com/index.php?article_no=2520&ltype=cat
  11. https://web.archive.org/web/20110829190534/http://b96.radio.com/2009/10/30/interview-with-miley-cyrus/
  12. http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050609/REVIEWS/50605001
  13. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/news/?id=1836&p=.htm
  14. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=sharkboyandlavagirl.htm
  15. http://www.law360.com/articles/365903/shark-boy-attacks-amazon-over-pint-size-infringer
  16. Rodriguez, Robert; Roberson, Chris (2005). Sharkboy and Lavagirl Adventures: Book 2: Return to Planet Drool. Cover design and illustrations by Alex Toader. Troublemaker Publishing. ISBN .
  17. http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,1068441,00.html
  18. https://collider.com/robert-rodriguez-netflix-movie-details-sharkboy-lavagirl-we-can-be-heroes/

External links

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