Good, Bad & Ugly Review: Veronica Mars

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 76% (Critics) / 98% (Audience)
Directed By: Rob Thomas
Written By: Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero
Starring: Kristen Bell, Jason Dohring, Chris Lowell, Gaby Hoffmann and Enrico Colantoni
Studio: Warner Bros

Synopsis: Years after walking away from her past as a teenage private eye, Veronica Mars gets pulled back to her hometown – just in time for her high school reunion – in order to help her old flame Logan Echolls, who’s embroiled in a murder mystery. – (Source)

The Good:
Just the fact that this cast was brought back together and I was able to sit in a movie theater and watch their story continue was more than enough to make me a happy camper. I had the same goofy fanboy vibe while watching this movie that I had while watching SERENITY. All of the characters looked great and they picked back up the distinct chemistry that made the TV show so fun to watch.
I also liked the many cameos that were peppered throughout the movie from actors wo were supporting characters in the TV show (Ken Marino and Max Greenfield especially) and just famous fans like James Franco and the group of guys hitting on Veronica Mars in the club scene which included Kristen Bell’s real life husband Dax Sheperd. And Gaby Hoffman was a hoot in her small role.
The plot was fun too even though it bordered on the byzantine. Using the shows history to set up the murder mystery was a good touch. I also liked how much darker he made the goings on in fictional town of Neptune since Veronica left. What once was just a town with a seedy underbelly now felt like a much scarier place.

The Bad:
The open-ended subplots made this feel more like the pilot episode of a rebooted TV show than a feature length film. Hopefully this movie does well and a sequel can be made to pick up on the dangling plot threads that I really want to see wrapped up.
I also would have appreciated a little more of Veronica and her Scooby Gang (Wallace and Mac) helping her with her investigation. And less Piz is now and will forever be a good thing so I wouldn’t have minded most of his scenes hitting the cutting room floor.

The Ugly
Mr. and Mrs Lamb raised some truly awful children because Sheriff Dan Lamb is an even bigger douchebag than his dearly departed brother Don.

Final Verdict: A fun movie that is like a gift-wrapped present for fans of the TV show while also being accessible enough to new viewers to not scare them off. This film also features great performances by a cast that clicks and smart writing from the show’s creator. While it could have used more scenes that featured the cast working together and the open-ended subplots were a bit frustrating…VERONICA MARS was a welcome return that I would love to see more of.

Grade: B+

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