The Powerpuff Girls Movie is a 2002 feature-length film based on the Cartoon Network animated television series The Powerpuff Girls. Produced by Cartoon Network for Warner Bros., it was released in the United States on July 3, 2002.
The film is a prequel of the television series, telling the story of how the Powerpuff Girls were created and how they came to be the defenders of Townsville. In theaters, a Dexter's Laboratory short entitled "Chicken Scratch" was shown prior to the film, which later aired as part of that series' fourth season.
Townsville is terrorized by criminals and villains. We're soon introduced to Professor Utonium who returns to his home where he attempts to create the perfect child using sugar, spice and everything nice. Little did he know that his experiment would soon become his most famous one of all.
But his experiment goes wrong when his mischievous chimpanzee, Jojo, collides with the Professor, making him accidentally spill Chemical X into the mixture, causing a massive explosion. Though the Professor has some distance between him and the chemical reaction, Jojo, in his less-than-brilliant form, stands near to look more closely at the specimen and gets the explosion head on, throwing him out of a window.
After the explosion, Professor Utonium regains consciousness and finds himself before three tiny girls who introduce themselves as his creations. Utonium proceeds to name them Blossom (for being polite and the first to speak to him), Bubbles (for giggling and seeming cute and bubbly), and Buttercup (because it also begins with a B, much to her displeasure and the first frown). Professor Utonium discovers quickly that his daughters have superpowers, including super speed and flight when he rushes out to get them presents and comes back, nearly tripping down the stairs, but with Blossom catching him and Bubbles and Buttercup catching the presents. The following day, the girls help Utonium paint the house walls (accidentally painting almost all over him in the process, which then causes him to paint his own face), load the furniture in, and make the windows in their room. They then make lunch, and have a happy day before bedtime.
Utonium takes his girls to school and comes back to pick them up at noon on the next morning. But the girls learn of the game "tag" and take it into overdrive when they start using their super speed to flee from one another. The girls fly about madly destroying various structures, with Utonium chasing them in his car all the while the girls seem oblivious to the havoc they're causing in the city until they collide with the mayor who was about to eat a pickle. Utonium eventually bundles the girls back to their house, telling them they should not use their superpowers in public for their own safety. The three understand, but they have no idea what consequences there will be for their reckless actions.
Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup are treated as outcasts (especially in school) while Utonium is ambushed by the mayor and his guards and taken to prison for creating the girls. The mayor, being an idiot, only did this because of not getting a pickle, while the other townsfolk believed the three are too dangerous to be around. The girls wait for their father after school until, after he does not arrive, they are convinced that he hates them as well and they sadly try to find their way home on foot (because the Professor had told them not to use their powers, and flying counted as use of them). On the way, they see a nearby television making horrible remarks from citizens of the city, including the mayor who shrieks about them being "Pickle Cart Killers" and the main newspaper say that they're "Bug-Eyed Freaks." Eventually the girls are caught in a heavy rainstorm. Having no way into their house, the girls try to take shelter in some boxes in an alley, but the Gangreen Gang attacks them. The girls are saved by none other than Jojo, now an intelligent monkey with an oversized brain and the ability to speak with a Japanese accent who hides in fear. The girls are moved by his speech on how people resent him. Then, Jojo cries out to the Girls that he wishes to build a better city but cannot do it because he has no help and is a homeless beggar. The Girls, who are saddened by his poor life, decide to help him, however, they had to first use their powers again to activate a machine in a volcano, and starts to take structures from all over the world. The girls offer their help and Jojo accepts the offer.
Together, the four build a new building on top of a volcano in the middle of the city that has a giant machine in its center. As a "reward" for their help, Jojo sneaks the girls into the local zoo, taking pictures of the primates in the zoo behind their backs. It is revealed by a gorilla-shot that he has sent them with teleportation devices that are microscopic, but are shown very big in screen. The Powerpuff Girls start to reuse their powers again and fly back home. The girls manage to get into their home and Utonium is thrown in through the front door and complains of arrest, lawsuits and other such difficulties. During the course of the night, Jojo activates teleporting devices he attached to the monkeys through his camera at the zoo and teleports them to his lair (the volcano in the middle of the city) where he uses Chemical X to mutate them into intelligent primates like himself. He makes them more evil, rips their heads into bigger brains, changes their skin to green and their eyes to pink, and give them dialogue like how it happened to him in the beginning.
The next day, the girls believe that the public will accept them, and travel with Utonium towards City Hall. Then, Jojo (now calling himself "Mojo Jojo") attacks with his primate army. Mojo Jojo announces that Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup helped him with his plan. The city has thousands of citizens abused, attacked, wounded, flooded, punched, strangled, bitten and spitted on by monkeys start to blame the Girls all over again since they did their game of tag around the city. The girls try to convince Utonium and the citizens that they were tricked, but the people called them "liars" and Utonium is heartbroken beyond conviction. Dejected, the girls blast off into space finally deciding they actually are evil, and were only created for destruction. And there is no hope for the entire planet, with the girls exiled.
Mojo Jojo announces that the primates will rule the world in the human race's place, with himself as their king. The primates, however, all having been rendered evil geniuses by the Chemical X, all wish to be the future ruler of the primate race. Mojo Jojo tries to regain control of his army (doing his very first repetitive speech in the process), but fails as the primates collapse into infighting. Frustrated, Mojo Jojo decides to kill a depressed Professor Utonium.
Up in space, the banished girls are on an asteroid traveling away from Earth, resigning themselves to isolation. Then, Blossom and Buttercup start yelling at each other, blaming each other over their game of tag and for trusting Mojo in the first place, while Bubbles is crying like crazy while being sad. However, when they hear the screams coming from Townsville and particularly Professor Utonium's yell, the girls fly back to Earth, where they have to save all the people. They eventually realize that they can use their powers to fight all of the monkeys, each with a gimmick more bizarre than the other, to save the professor and the town. However, they realize none of the monkeys have the Professor, meaning they've got "one last monkey to get off [their] backs." Eventually they take the fight to Mojo, who uses the Professor against them declaring his intention to rule the world, "even if it means taking EXTREME MEASURES!!!" At that moment, Mojo pumps so much Chemical X into himself that he grows to the size of a giant. Mojo then proceeds to rip off the dome of Townsville City Hall and places it on his brain as his new helmet. Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup engage Mojo in a huge battle that ends with him nearly burning the girls to death and catching them in his humongous hand as he scales a skyscraper (an obvious reference to King Kong).
He tries to make the girls join him by reminding them how much the town feared and hated them, but they break free from his grasp, punched him, and push him off the skyscraper ("we are stronger, we are invincible and you are ... it"). The Professor appears with an antidote for Chemical X that will shrink Mojo Jojo back to normal size. Mojo is about to fall directly on the Professor, but the girls push him out of the way, making him drop the antidote which shatters on the road. Mojo crash-lands on the antidote and shrinks back to normal. Mojo is in pain from the fall, or possibly in shock, and is not moving, only groaning. The Professor apologizes for doubting the girls and says that he loves them which the girls also confess their love for him. They then apologize for their actions and decide to get rid of their powers with the remainder of the antidote so the town will like them as ordinary girls, but the townsfolk protest. The Mayor apologizes on behalf of the whole of the city over their misunderstandings and asks the girls to become their local superheroes. The girls happily accept the job.
The movie ends with the girls defeating the Gangreen Gang (the first villains they ever met), kick-starting their new career as the city's official superheroes. Plus, the narrator gives them their official name: the Powerpuff Girls.
Why It Rocks
- The idea of a movie about the retelling of the Powerpuff Girls' origin story was fairly interesting and is handled well for the most part.
- Very good and talented voice acting, getting one of the original cast.
- The animation is very detailed.
- An awesome soundtrack.
- The final battle is well-done.
- The characters are very likable.
- It manages to teach kids some good lessons and amuse the grown-ups without overdosing on pop-culture references.
- The film parodies superhero films, the girls get told of their destructive behavior and collateral damage.
- The humor is rather weak.
- There's more violence than the series. Which is a little too much for a kids' movie.
- It was unfortunately a box office bomb, causing Cartoon Network to no longer make theatrical movies, instead just TV movies (Teen Titans Go! To The Movies does not count because the movie is actually made by Warner Bros. Animation, even though it is based on a Cartoon Network property). The main reason for its poor failure at the box office is because the commercials were extremely spolierfic and the advertising was horrible (not surprising since this is from Warner Brothers the same studio that mismarketed the The Iron Giant causing it to fail financially and had just the previous year poorly promoted Osmosis Jones and dumped it to die a slow death).