Thunderbirds (2004)

ray gower

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2001
Having narrowly averted a major disaster on an oil rig, the Thunderbirds have just returned home to their secret base when TB5, their space based station, is critically damaged in a suspected meteor strike. Unbeknown to them, the attack on TB5 is a deliberate ploy by international master criminal Aristotle Spode to get them off the island. He takes over the island and forces Brains into submission, using the power of his mind. But Spode has overlooked one key factor: Alan, Fermat and Tin Tin are still on the island.
If I am honest I want to dislike this thing and it is remarkably easy:-

Start from it is not Thunderbirds as anybody who was a fan of the original 60's marionation knows it and work up from there.

The puppets have gone. Though to see the efforts of Sophia Myles as Lady Penelope, or the rest of the International Rescue team one might be forgiven for not noticing.
Sir Ben Kingsley as the Hood and Ron Cook as Parker do fit the parts neatly and Alan Tracey manages to be even more obnoxious than his wooden counterpart.

While the whole thing is played to the camp levels as the old Adam West Batman TV series.

Camp is not the only thing it shares with Batman either- Fords interpretation of FAB1 must surely be vying with the Batmobile as the most ugly and impractical vehicle ever!

From there I could start getting nasty about it. Which I will avoid, except to say the International Bank in London is The Bank Of England, not the Bank of London, they got it right in the real thing why not here?

All that said, it is not a bad film. It is a fun film to while away 2 hours with.
The plot (sans the puns) would have suited the old series quite well, the action is thick and fast and most of the machines look more or less right.

If you enjoyed films like Spy Kids and have never seen the real thing, you will enjoy this.

But I have a real feeling that a massive opportunity has been squandered in treating its audience as a bunch of nine year olds.

TB's popularity for the last forty years is that it appealed to everybody above the age of 9, not just the ones who have 9 year olds to amuse for an hour or so.

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