Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (2017) Review


Two young elementary school misfits, George (voiced by Kevin Hart) and Harold (Thomas Middleditch) are notorious for causing mayhem at their school and pulling pranks. Their mean principal Mr. Krupp (Ed Helms) devises a plan to separate the two friends in different classes (this means the end of the world to the two friends). In an attempt to thwart his plans, George hypnotizes Mr. Krupp with a special ring. They decide to have some fun and make him think he’s Captain Underpants (the superhero in the comics they write). Unfortunately, Krupp takes this too seriously and begins to seek out crime.

Based on the children’s book series (which I read back in elementary school and loved), a film adaptation has finally been made. And all I have to say is that my elementary school self would have been 100% pleased. As an adult I was pleased as well with how well they handled and translated the books. But also as an adult, I realized this movie is not for me or other adults. Unlike Disney/Pixar/Fox/Dreamworks, etc. family films that are made for family and have humor even adults can enjoy, this is primarily for children with child’s humor. There are so many child jokes here. The villain in this film is Professor Poopypants (Nick Kroll), and that in itself is enough to have children rolling with laughter each time it’s said, and is a representation of the humor of this film. Again, all of this does capture the humor and silliness of the books, but this is for children. Sure I chuckled at a couple of moments, but there just isn’t much here for adults to engage in. The humor aside, there is a lot of heart here in how it depicts George and Harold’s relationship and what it means to be a child and enjoy the silliness of things at that age while you can. The voice talents in the cast are very well-done and capture the characters perfectly, and the animation in it is great to look at. With all of these DC/Marvel films being released that may be too intense or adult for younger viewers, here we have a superhero film that is perfect for those too young for the the blockbuster ones. It has the humor, the story, fun characters, and more.

Captain Underpants may not be a movie for adults (this would have been nice), but it is the perfect movie for children, really captures the source material, and brings a lot of heart to its story. Essentially it succeeds in what it is trying to do 100%.