By Melissa Platero, CCNN Writer
Veronica Mars hit theaters on Friday, thanks to the 91,585 fans of the 2004-2007 TV series who came together on crowdfunding site Kickstarter to bring back Kristen Bell’s snarky detective character.
In the flick, Veronica has evolved from a sassy California teen private investigator to a full-grown New York woman on track to become a corporate lawyer. Her life suddenly hits a U-turn when she finds out her bad boy ex, Logan, is framed for murder, leading her back to the hometown of Neptune, California for good old-fashioned sleuthing.
While director Rob Thomas makes the movie entertaining to folks who aren’t familiar with the original TV series, it’s clear that his main target audience is all those diehard Veronica Mars superfans. To that end, Thomas serves up almost every major character in all their glory, ranging from surfer bro Richard Casablancas, who’s played with hilarious airheadedness by Ryan Hansen, father Keith Mars, who actor Enrico Colantoni pulls off with his classic “cool, but caring dad” swagger, and of course Logan Echolls, the tough-guy-with-a-heart-of-gold played by Jason Dohring.
The film feels more than anything like a mega TV episode, likely as a result of the tight $6 million budget, but it’s still impressive how much the moviemakers managed to cram into the 107-minute-long hijinks.
Even if the mystery itself is rather bland and uninteresting, the actors have serious onscreen chemistry, so you’ll end up caring more about the characters than the fact that the weak plot is really just a reason to get the whole gang together again.
The amount of throwbacks and inside jokes for true Veronica Mars fans will thrill them to the core, but looking at the movie from the standpoint of an average popcorn Sunday theatergoer, it’s nothing special. So, if you’re game for a light-hearted, charming whodunit, with solid acting despite a forgettable storyline, the flick is worth the price of admission – even for the folks who didn’t chip in on Kickstarter. Our final verdict for this B movie is, well, a solid “B”!
Images courtesy of Warner Bros. and The Veronica Mars Movie Facebook.