“Scooby Doo,” Where Have You Been All My Life?

“Nobody’s ever given me a stuffed disembodied head before.”

What if I told you there was a movie where a brainwashed Sugar Ray chases after some of the biggest 90s stars in the world, violently smashing through windows with his guitar to get at them?

What if I told you that that luscious metaphor for nostalgia isn’t the best part in the movie? No, not even close (that’d be the flatulent standoff between Scoobs and Shaggy).

To celebrate today’s Oscar nominations, I wanted to spotlight a movie that boasted multiple Razzie nominations and multiple Stinker Award victories.

I was told — and believed — that the live-action Scooby Doo film was an abomination. Sure, CGI Scooby Doo is going to haunt the rest of my days, but mostly in a Casper the Friendly Ghost kind of way.

What makes this movie somehow work in spite of some noteworthy warts is the complete commitment from its perfectly cast ensemble. There is no shame on display and I am here for that.

Freddie Prinze Jr. plays Fred like a clueless, blowhard narcissist who would make Gilderoy Lockhart jealous. Sarah Michelle Gellar flirts playfully with her Buffy persona by being the always-damsel-in-distress-who-wants-more Daphne. Human cartoon Matthew Lillard is the only man on Earth who can play Shaggy, somehow turning farts and belches into genuine love and affection for his pal Scoob, the friendship upon which the film is built. Linda Cardellini’s Velma is the breakout character that had me wanting the film to change up some ‘ships.

Dollop on some Isla Fisher, a dash of Rowan Atkinson and a ladle of self-aware humor from a James Gunn screenplay with a glorious twist and you have one delicious Scooby Snack that will leave you craving more (and yes, there IS a spooky sequel now on my watchlist).

Scooby Doo is buried treasure, a disturbing and wondrous 2002 time capsule waiting to be opened. I dare you to see what’s inside.

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