- Movie Rating -

The Bob’s Burgers Movie (2022)

| May 25, 2022

The most surprising thing about The Bob’s Burgers Movie is that it doesn’t feel like epic.  Previous attempts to raise a prime time animated property onto the big screen, The Simpsons Movie and South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, have successfully ballooned up their world and their population of characters to fit the format.  Those films attempted to pack in nearly every viable character while at the same time settling long-overdue issues that their episodic counterparts have slowly dolled out over several seasons.

Given the more intimate template of the show, it’s kind of fitting that really the only lingering issue in The Bob’s Burgers Movie is whether or not Louise will take off her hat.  The pink bunny hat has become her trademark and there is a very sweet sense of growing up, growing past the security blanket, and the resolution is, I will say, kind of sweet.  It doesn’t throw a sentimental pie in your face, but that’s always been the way that “Bob’s Burgers” rolls.

Actually, the bigger story is less gripping.  There’s a mystery that needs to be solved (which I won’t spoil), but it is thankfully wrapped up in the kinds of world-crushing frustration that this series is built on.  The template of the show has always been built around the cosmic insanity that frustrate Bob’s common sense and this plot does not disappoint.  In this case, Bob and Linda are facing the possibility of losing the restaurant because of the defaulting loan payment AND, to make things worse, a sinkhole that has formed right outside their front door.

Keeping with the show’s aesthetic, everyone in the family has a personal problem: Tina wants to finally land Jimmy Jr. as her summer boyfriend; Gene wants to get his band The Itty Bitty Ditty Committee started; and Louise’s self-esteem is shaken when some of the girls at school call her a baby.  The only disappointment here is that Teddy’s petty problems don’t interfere with the Belcher’s personal issues, but I understand that omission.  Teddy’s nonsense has a way of stealing scenes and very well might have stolen the entire movie.

The main plot is what actually pulls the rug out from under those intimate details.  The sinkhole has opened up a bucket of problems for the Belcher’s landlord, Mr. Fischoeder, who finds himself accused of murder, and the bulk of the movie becomes a whodunit that wasn’t, frankly, all that interesting.  It pulls away from the Belcher’s minor issues and turns the movie’s third act into a half-realized Scooby-Doo narrative that is kind of long and drawn out.  Even the antagonist gets on your nerves, a character so minor to the show that he hardly even matters.

Still, I liked this movie.  I like creator Loren Bourchard’s dedication to keeping things on track and the characters themselves.  There’s no real over-arching revelation that changes the future of the show (now in it’s 12th season) but at its best, the movie keeps to what fans expect.  If the movie is successful, I have a feeling that the sequel will feel bigger and more epic.  I hope not.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(2022) View IMDB Filed in: Animated, Comedy