Good Burger is a 1997 comedy film produced by Nickelodeon Movies and released by Paramount Pictures, directed by Brian Robbins and produced by Dan Schneider and starring Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Sinbad, Shar Jackson, Abe Vigoda, and Jan Schweiterman. (Carmen Electra, Shaquille O'Neal, and George Clinton make brief cameo appearances.) The film was based on a popular recurring sketch on Nickelodeon's sketch show All That, with Mitchell reprising his role as an airheaded fast food cashier. The film is noteworthy for being the first theatrical-released film based on a Nickelodeon show. It is also the only film that fits that criteria that is based on a live-action Nickelodeon show.In the film, Thompson plays Dexter, a high-school student that is forced to work at Good Burger after causing a car crash with his teacher Mr. Wheat. The restaurant is also rivaled by Mondo Burger across the street, a menacing mammoth chain that could easily make Good Burger a piece of history. But Good Burger is not going quietly into that good night, as Ed has also concocted a special sauce that makes Good Burger the hottest burger joint in town, and Mondo is determined to steal the recipe and their costumers. Dexter and Ed team up to beat their competition and end up unearthing a dark secret...Mondo Burgers are treated with chemicals that enlarge the patties.It earned $23.7 million in the US & Canada, against a $9 million budget. Reviews for the film were mostly negative, garnering a 31% "rotten" rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
Tropes this movie follows:
All Just a Dream: Ed dreams of burgers talking to him at the beginning of the movie.
Artistic License - Chemistry: Mondo Burger's "triamphethol" is an additive that somehow causes hamburger meat to increase in mass during cooking. Kurt admits that it is "way illegal"—indeed, it violates not only the health code, but also the law of conservation of mass.
Avoid the Dreaded G Rating: Abe Vigoda's line "I think I broke my ass" and (to a lesser extent) the mental patient played by George Clinton remarking that the music in the mental hospital lobby sucks.
Back for the Finale: Notice when the crowd of employees and customers cheer for Ed saving Good Burger in the end, Heather can be seen hiding amongst the crowd (looking over Mr. Bailey's shoulder).
Bad Bad Acting: Pay close attention during Mondo Burger's demise, as you watch customers and patrons race out of the restaurant and it comes down, one man amongst the panicking crowd has the most calm, relaxed, subdued look on his face... in fact, he doesn't even really run out of the restaurant, he just casually slips into the crowd and makes his way out the door.
Kurt and his henchmen are so hammy at times that they fall under this category too.
Bedlam House: The main characters are sent there by the Big Bad after learning the secret behind Mondo Burger's...well, mondo burgers. Otis gets sent there also after he catches Kurt and his Mondo brats dumping shark poison in Ed's Sauce.
Benevolent Boss: Mr. Bailey teeters back and forth between being an exact example of this, and being more of a reluctant example.
Bigger Is Better: Apparently Mondo Burger's philosophy. Kurt's attempted solution to getting customers? Make their "already twice as big as Good Burger's" burgers bigger!
Employee: But they're already— Kurt: Bigger! BIGGER!!
Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Ed's dream at the beginning of the movie where the burgers begin talking to him and then send him falling down a deep chasm; it is never mentioned again in the movie.
Big "NO!": Ed, when he stops the old lady from eating a poisoned good burger.
Book Ends: The movie begins and ends with Ed saying his customary Good Burger greeting.
Ed:(waking up) WELCOME TO GOOD BURGER, HOME OF THE GOOD BURGER. CAN I TAKE— huh?
Catch Phrase: "Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?"
"You mess with Kurt, and you go into the grinder."
Canon Foreigner: Not counting anyone not connected to Good Burger in which the sketches took place, Dexter, Otis and most of the supporting staff never appeared in the sketches, although Kenan Thompson often did appear in the sketches as various customers.
Chase Scene: When Ed, Dexter, and Otis escape from Demented Hills, they get onto an ice cream truck. When the guys from the asylum try to follow, they retaliate by throwing ice cream at the windshield until it becomes too thick to see through.
Ed: See, I knew that if I took the can, there was a good chance I'd get caught. Then I thought that even if I did take the triambythal to the proper authorities, Kurt would hire some high-powered attorney who dispute any charges brought against him or Mondo Burger, by manipulating the legal system. And the way that America's court system is congested these days, it would have taken months to convict him of anything. So then I thought, I just take the matter into my own hands and pour the Triampathol into the meat supply and let Mondo Burger be a victim of its own foul play.
Evil-Detecting Dog: Ed gives a hungry dog a Mondo Burger patty, but the dog won't eat it for some reason. So Ed gives him a Good Burger patty instead and it immediately eats it. This begins to make Dexter and Ed suspicious about Mondo Burger.
When being drilled on Mondo Burger protocol, Kurt mentions that his employees should forget their families, because he is both their mother and father. Dexter tells one of his fellow trainees, "Kurt must look awfully strange naked."
When Ed is about to tell the contents of the secret Good Sauce and is tackled to the ground by Dexter "I like you as a friend and all but..."
When Kurt offers Ed a job at Mondo Burger, Dexter says "That diphthong doesn't like you! He just wants to USE you!" To which Ed responds, "Well, that's not 'natural'."
Heel Realization: Dexter has this after Monique calls him out for cheating Ed out of money.
Hero Insurance: How Ed and Dexter get away with stealing an ice cream truck, destroying Mr. Wheat's mailbox twice, and endangering Mondo Burger customers by overloading the meat supply with Triampathol and causing the restaurant to implode.
Heroic BSOD: Ed gets this after trying to follow Connie Muldoon's order for her family reunion.
Never My Fault: Dexter, who just recognizing where he's seen Ed, blames him for the car accident that forced him to get a summer job to pay for it. He also blames him for his parents finding out he was driving without a license, which he shouldn't have been doing in the first place.
Obfuscating Stupidity: Ed explains that he poured the bottles of acid into the meat on purpose because he knew that Kurt would manipulate the legal system to his favor unless the cops discover the acid themselves as they did when the restaurant imploded; Ed then goes on to say "I'm not stupid," despite his blatant idiocy throughout the movie (as well as the All That sketch that the film is based on).
Also, even though Ed comes off as dim-witted, he showed culinary genius, as he made a sauce that everyone likes.
Oh, Crap: Dexter when he's standing on top of a delivery van that's about to drive off. Actually, Dexter has these moments throughout the movie.
Kurt when Dexter tells him that Ed is on his way to the cops with a can of their illegal food additive. Ed then shows up with an empty can and seemingly screws everything up again, but it was actually all part of his plan.
Out of Focus: This apparently happens to Monique: she's established as Dexter's Satellite Love Interest, who initially has no interest in him, but apparently that little subplot offers nothing to viewers, as many critics and reviewers of the movie seem to overlook her altogether.
Connie: Hello, my name is Connie Muldoon, I'm hosting a family reunion and my oven has run amok! I think it's the heat actuator. Anyhoo, I'd like to order... *Speech increases the more she talks* Three Good Meals, four Junior Good Meals, a seventeen-piece order of your Good Chunks, and on two of the Junior Good Meals, I need to substitute the Good Cookies for Good Pies. Now don't fret if that's extra, I'll pony up the overage. And, uh, oh, on the regular Good Meals, I need two of the Good Burgers to have ketchup, mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato, but no onion, I've got an interview this afternoon. Let's see, that takes care of everyone but Uncle Leslie who doesn't eat meat but, of course, he does eat dairy, so I don't get it. Let's get Leslie a Good Chickwich with some Good Fries, and a Good Root Beer all to go. But I would like to have my beverage while I wait. Now, total me up.
Ow, My Body Part!: After Dexter tackled Ed to shut him up from revealing the recipe for his sauce.
Ed: Dexter? You're squishing my pancreas.
Product Placement: A reporter briefly appears from LA's KCOP-13 (back when they had their own newscast; now they're owned by Fox and have no news); they were an affiliate of UPN at the time (this was a Paramount movie). Also, Mr. Wheat drives an Infiniti near the end of the movie, and there's a Coca-Cola machine at Good Burger.
Pop-Star Composer: The movie score was composed by the fantastic Stewart Copeland, drummer for The Police. The score contains numerous moments of guitar shredding, heavy rock riffs, synthesizers, and R&B vocal samples.
Also, the movie has a cover of the song "Roxanne" in it, which was originally a Police song.
Race Against the Clock: After escaping the mental hospital, Dexter, Ed, and Otis race to Good Burger before anyone eats the poisoned sauce.
Dexter dishes one out to Ed when he realizes that Ed was the rollerblading nut who contributed to his auto accident.
Dexter: Now I know where I saw you before, you're the rollerblading nut who caused my accident!
Ed: Uh, no?
Dexter: You're the reason why I owe $1,900! You're the reason my mom found out I was driving without a license! You cost me a fortune, man! You ruined my summer! You ruined my life!
Later, Monique gives Dexter an earful when she discovers his Ponzi Scheme to take most of the profit from Ed's sauce.
Monique: I know what this is, it's the contract you had Ed sign, y'know, the one you take most of his money? The money that he's supposed to get for his sauce?
Dexter: No... yes. Look, I was just trying—
Monique: You know, I can't believe you take advantage of someone who trusted you. How can you take advantage of a sweet and generous guy like Ed? And after he got you a ''job''?
Dexter: It ain't even like that! I only wanted—
Monique: Oh, I know what you wanted! You're not Ed's friend, you're just using him to scam a little cash on the side... you must feel really good about yourself. But don't worry, I'm not gonna tell Ed that you're cheating him.
Dexter: (Beat) Why not?
Monique: Because it would hurt him too much. Otis even chimes in with one simple word for Dexter: "Punk!"
Skewed Priorities: Dexter's upset because he has to get a summer job? Dude, you're lucky you didn't go to prison for driving without a license!
Just to hammer home how skewed his priorities are, he did almost go to prison, because his teacher (whose car he totaled) almost called the police on him. It was Dexter himself who came up with the summer job idea so he could pay for his teacher's car; his teacher agreed to that mostly because Dexter would hate it, so he didn't call the police. So not only are Dexter's priorities skewed with him being upset about his summer job, but he has a summer job because his teacher was being merciful!
Timmy in a Well: A Subversion with a dog running up to Ed, who reads his barkings as "A bunch of clowns are stranded on the highway with a broken radiator". Dexter tells him not to be stupid and that the dog's just hungry. At the end of the scene, Gilligan Cut to a bunch of clowns, standing by a broken car, wondering where the dog went.
Too Dumb to Live: Ed; It's a wonder how he manages to keep his job given the number of customers he puts off through the film through his sheer stupidity.
Although later, he has Ultimate Job Security because his sauce is the only thing keeping Good Burger in business.
Too Dumb to Fool: The efforts of the Honey Trap to get the secret sauce from Ed fail because Ed doesn't realize he's being seduced
We Can Rule Together: Kurt attempts to get Ed to work for him by promising a higher salary. His stupidity prevents him from taking the offer.
Not only his stupidity, but Dexter warned him if Kurt gets the sauce Good Burger would go out-out-business. And because Ed loves Good Burger so much, he won't work with him.