Hey Arnold!: The Movie brought everybody’s favorite football head to the big screen. To mixed results. Hey Arnold! was a personal favorite early Nicktoon for my brother and me. We really connected to the show’s urban slice of life comedy, romance, and drama. Arnold is a football headed kid who always looks on the bright side. He lives with his wacky grandparents in a neighborhood full of quirky friends. It’s a kids show that wasn’t afraid to have complex characters and mature storylines.
I would highly recommend checking the show out, but the movie is a different story. Released in the middle of season 5, it was meant to be a TV movie titled Arnold Saves the Neighborhood. But then Nickelodeon movies became big hits, so they made it theatrical instead (earning their first PG rating). Which was a bad decision considering it wasn’t as original as the other planned movie. Hey Arnold!: The Movie is about Arnold and best friend Gerald trying to save their neighborhood from a greedy businessman by becoming kid spies. Meanwhile Grandpa and the Borders set explosives under the roads. Even the poster was derivative of the Jimmy Neutron poster.
Despite that, my brother and I were very excited to see the movie. Even though the trailer gave away a major character moment. Helga is a seriously underappreciated Nick character. Both for her complicated home life and love/hate relationship with Arnold. So to see her finally reveal her love for Arnold in the trailer, was just insulting to the fans. I’ll always love seeing my favorite Nicktoons on the big screen, but Hey Arnold!: The Movie was not the movie fans deserved.
Followed by: Hey Arnold!: The Jungle Movie