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Movie Review: Veronica Mars
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Veronica Mars movie posterVeronica Mars
Directed by Rob Thomas
Written by Rob Thomas, Diane Ruggiero
Starring: Kristen Bell, Krysten Ritter, Tina Majorino, Jason Dohring, Chris Lowell, Jerry O’Connell, Francis Capra, Ryan Hansen, Enrico Colantoni, Percy Daggs III
Running Time: 107 Minutes | PG-13
Warner Brothers
Release Date: March 14, 2014
Limited Theatrical Release, also available via iTunes and VOD
Partially Funded by Kickstarter

It’s been a long time coming, but my fellow marshmallows and I have finally gotten that Veronica Mars movie we have wanted, ever since the television series got cancelled. And if you are even familiar with Kickstarter, perhaps this was the reason you heard about, it wouldn’t have happened without all the fans who donated their money to make this happen. The project broke numerous records as they pulled their forces (91,585 people) and raised $5,702,153.

It started off as a small project, but word quickly spread and the rest is history, leading to this day, when we can walk into a theater and see Veronica Mars on the big screen. As of now, it is showing in limited theaters, for me, my local AMC theaters, but I know it’s expanding into another theater in a few weeks. I am guessing how many more will depend on how well the movie does at the box office. According to Box Office Mojo, it earned just over a million on late Thursday and Friday screenings.

But was it worth the wait? Was it worth my donation? Let’s talk about that more later.

We catch up with Veronica (Kristen Bell) about 9 years after the series finale of the show; she’s living in New York with Piz (Chris Lowell) and, being a recent law school graduate, is out searching for a job in the legal field. She’s moved on from the good ole days of helping her PI dad, Keith Mars (Enrico Colantoni), and realized that she needs to go into another direction, after all the downfall of her past life. But of course, just as things are looking bright, she gets pulled back into her past.

She gets a call from her ex, Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring), and it seems he’s once again gotten himself into trouble and he needs her help. He’s a prime suspect in a murder case and wants her help to prove his innocence, when once again the world seems to be against him. They have a torrid past, but she can’t seem to say no to him, so she heads back to Neptune, CA, which hasn’t changed much she’s left, especially the crooked police department, run by Sheriff Daniel Lamb (Jerry O’Connell). But as she tries to help Logan prove his innocence, she gets dragged in even further, as more cover-ups and mysteries pop up that she feels she can’t let go unsolved. Along the way, she does run into a few familiar friends and foes, which is some nice fanfare for us fans of the show, including a few surprises as well.

If you are a fan of the show, you are going to feel like its’ just like old times as you watch the movie. I just recently got back from seeing it and there was a decent crowd, and I would say that for the most part, the audience seemed to be filled with fans of the show. The best way to tell who’s a fan is by the responses to seeing someone or a call back to the show.

But how does this movie stack up for someone who isn’t familiar with the TV series? I was planning to go to the movie with a friend who wasn’t familiar with the show, but as he looked into it more, it didn’t seem to grab his interest. So I don’t have an answer to that question. But I have to say that I really enjoyed it, and from just hearing some people leave the showing before mine and from my showing, I would say that overall it was a positive response. Like I said, we are back into the world and nothing has changed; there’s still the fun quirky dialogue, some great one-liners, suspense, and of course a mystery that needs to be solved. I can’t forget about the love triangle, because where would a Veronica Mars story be without that? And depending on who your allegiance is to (Team Logan or Team Piz), you may or may not like the end result.

And the good news is that the movie doesn’t really end the story, as a book is soon to follow: Veronica Mars: An Original Mystery by Rob Thomas: The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line. Perhaps I can find some free time to check it out amongst the piles of movies and games begging for my attention to read and reviewed as well, so we shall see. So, let’s all rejoice and pat ourselves on the back — we did it, and now we can once again jump back into the world of Veronica Mars.

If you are a fan of the show, I am sure I don’t need to twist your arm to get you to go out and see it. But I will say this, if this ends up as a success in any way, this just opens up a whole new world for those shows you loved that got cancelled. Could we see a Chuck or Pushing Daisies movie in our future? I know I would be willing to donate some money to see that happen. But I would also think that if you are not a fan, and after seeing the movie perhaps it might pique your interest in checking out the television series. There are only three seasons you need to watch, which is not too bad of a time investment. Plus, as an added bonus, it’s always funny to see a few familiar faces from other show before they got big.

In closing, I would say that my money was well spent, and I look forward to watching the movie again, and checking out the script as well, which is just one part of the Kickstarter perks I received as a backer. It was a nice feeling sitting in that theater and thinking my little donation helped to make this happen.

All three seasons of Veronica Mars are available on DVD:
Veronica Mars: The Complete First Season
Veronica Mars: The Complete Second Season
Veronica Mars: The Complete Third Season

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