on 25 September 2011
An Extremely Goofy Movie is a direct-to-video sequel, and it shows. Goofy and his son Max star in another movie about the two coming to terms with each other despite their differences. Therein lies the movie's weakness. A Goofy Movie had already done this. Was there really need for the same scenario to unfold; Max being embarrassed by his dad and learning to accept him? Goofy learning to let go and realize Max was an adult? An Extremely Goofy Movie is about both these things, and not as strongly developed.
Max is now going off to college with his friends PJ and Bobby. Max is intensely relieved to be rid of his dad, and looks forward to the three of them winning the College X-Games (involving rollerskating, bicycling and skateboarding among other things). Goofy is on the complete other shoe, depressed about Max moving away from home. This melancholy inadvertently causes him to lose his job at the factory. Realizing that he can only get another job by earning a college degree, Goofy enrolls in Max's college, to his horror. Cue Goofy's lack of parental distance. Things get worse when Goofy ends up being selected to join the Gammas, the X-Games champions and Max's arch-rivals.
I found myself very annoyed at both Max and Goofy during this film. Whereas in A Goofy Movie, you both understood and were frustrated by the pair of them, here they both were just bang out of order on so many occasions. Goofy goes beyond just being overly upset about letting Max go off to live his life; he barges into Max's dorm room, takes seats next to his son when Max is inviting a girl to sit there, the list goes on and on. Max is just as frustrating. Here, he is about 50% less mature than he was in A Goofy Movie; snotty and braggy, and very much mean to his father on many occasions. Pride comes before you take a fall, Max. Why, exactly, is winning the X-Games so important to him, anyway? Way more important than college itself, apparently. He's hardly a likeable character at all in this film, which is a bad thing. Annoying as he is as well, I usually found myself on Goofy's side.
Furthermore, where is Roxanne? The movie makes no acknowledgement that she even exists, and this after everything Max went through in A Goofy Movie to impress her. Also, Bradley Uppercrust the Third and his posse the Gammas get away with just too many things in the movie. No marginally organized sporting event would let what they do go by unnoticed; they even pull off many tricks with crowds of people around them!
Having said all of that, I still enjoy An Extremely Goofy Movie. Goofy is a riot as ever, especially when he gets into that 70s groove of his (being when he last was at college). Him dealing with his son having grown up and going to college really touches a chord with me, being at college myself. Goofy's romance with the ungainly college librarian, Sylvia, is wonderful; we don't often get to see Goofy in love, and he and Sylvia make a cute couple. We have other great supporting characters such as Tank, Bradley's muscle and the two duelling X-game reporters.
Finally, the movie LOOKS great! The character animation is all first class, especially for a direct-to-video Disney sequel. Take Return of Jafar and compare the animation in that with An Extremely Goofy Movie; like night and day. The music is alright, and has a distinct 70s flair whenever Goofy is in that mode. It's just a shame that there are no real musical numbers; none of the characters sing in this movie.
Overall, An Extremely Goofy Movie is an entertaining, heartwarming watch. It has its shortcomings to match, though, and in the end, it only ends up as average, beautiful in terms of character animation but ugly in terms of story and character development. See it if you must, but don't expect it to hold up on repeat viewings.