Follow TV Tropes


YMMV / The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl

Go To

  • Awesome Music: Sharkboy and Lavagirl by Ariel Abshire & The Lava Girls is a very catchy and upbeat Bragging Theme Tune.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Lavagirl losing her leg and sticking it back on; it comes completely out of the blue, and is never mentioned afterwards.
  • Cult Classic: The movie is a classic Guilty Pleasure flick for audiences who either grew up with it or watch it as adults to enjoy how cheesy and narmy it is.
  • Advertisement:
  • Drinking Game: Take a shot every time someone says some form of the word "dream". You will most likely be rushed to the hospital halfway through.
  • Ham and Cheese:
    • Those who don't like the movie will love Linus/Minus' overacting. Those who like the movie will definitely love his overacting.
    • George Lopez was clearly under no illusions about the kind of movie he was in, and naturally the entirety of his screen time as Mr. Electric is an extended hamfest. His scenes as Mr. Electricidad are downright unkosher.
    • Special mention goes to Taylor Lautner for literally Chewing the Scenery at several points.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • So there's a involving a group of three kids with the main protagonist having a fraught parental situation, two of the kids having contrasting personalities, and at least one of them being imaginary, who travel into a fantasy world incorporating things from their school, ruled by a technology-themed villain with underlings based on electric wires. This villain also employs two of the protagonist's actual classmates from real life as underlings: one of them is a shy girl who now has ice powers, and the other constantly bullied the protagonist and now has undying loyalty to the main villain, but later joins the team. Where have I heard that one before... Quite a few people have picked up on these similarities.
  • Iron Woobie: Lavagirl. Everything she touches burns to ash because her body is made of lava, which often causes problems for our heroes, and makes her think that she's actually evil. Nevertheless, she soldiers on past each obstacle to save Planet Drool.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Linus/Minus. He only wants to destroy the dream world because his dreams are broken, which explains his negative attitude.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "He ruined my dream journal!" "I did NOT! Mr. Electric, send him to the principal's office and have him EXPELLED!!"Explanation 
    • Advertisement:
    • "Shark Lava and Boy Girl."Explanation 
    • Sharkboy's rap for its hilariously aggressive lyrics, doubly hilarious because it's supposed to be a lullaby. All together now: "DREAM DREAM DREAM DREAM DREAM DREAM!"
  • Narm: Several instances, mostly the ridiculous faces Mr. Electric keeps making. Though it could be justified, as his silly facial expressions seem to be done on purpose.
    • Also, Max's parents' horrendously unemotional sentiment when admitting their love for each other in the climax of the movie. Dear God... It's very apparent that neither David Arquette nor Kristin Davis particularly wanted to be there from their toneless deliveries.
  • Narm Charm: Robert Rodriguez based the film solely on dreams and drawings from his young son, so naturally, there was absolutely no way that the movie could be anything but an extended cheesefest with more holes than a sieve in the writing, made to appeal to elementary school-age kids and no one else... and the way it shamelessly embraces all this is why some people find it so enjoyable.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Minus's head growing gigantic is quite horrifying, especially given the shoddy CG effects work.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
  • So Bad, It's Good: To a fair amount of viewers. Yes, it's beyond cheesy, but that's part of the charm.
  • Special Effects Failure: In spades. Like Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over, the film has very poor 3D and green-screen effects combined with CG that would have been terrible even for a direct-to-DVD film, despite costing 50 million dollars to produce and the special effects being produced by 11 different studios, including Industrial Light & Magic of all companies.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Max crying over Sharkboy and Lavagirl, who appear to be dead.
    • Sharkboy's dad being lost at sea. He calls out to his son as he's being drifted away.
    • Lavagirl's despair over the destruction her powers cause and her own fear that she is naturally evil is genuinely heartbreaking, and is made more so by how she clearly wants so desperately to do good and be accepted by others, but can't even touch her best friend without hurting him and destroys Max's dream journal by accident.
      • Related to the above, during Lavagirl's rant about how she and Sharkboy are incompatible, Sharkboy has a brief but clearly heartbroken look on his face. Considering Sharkboy has a crush on Lavagirl, one can only imagine how rejected he felt — in addition to likely being terrified he was about to lose his best friend.
  • Toy Ship: In-universe, Max with Marissa and Lavagirl with Sharkboy.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • So Sharkboy gets his own origin story, having been raised part of his life by sharks. What's Lavagirl's backstory? Never explained in the movie.
    • The psychological aspects of Max and his dreams aren't really explored much outside of surface references. The movie's overall message is supposed to be, "as long as you work hard, dreams can come true" as well, so this helps muddle it, but Max's parents are fighting a lot and thinking about getting a divorce. Max is cognizant of this and it's represented in his dreams that he's worried about them. He even imagined Sharkboy, Lavagirl, and an entire planet to escape reality and convinced himself they're real. Until they show up in person, the movie treats them as imaginary, so the setup of the movie could've involved what a kid goes through when they're worried about their parents splitting up, but the film gets too wrapped up in dealing with Max's bully and proving to him his dreams were real to have more than a handwave-y reconciliation between his parents in the climax.
  • The Woobie: Max. He's a bully magnet and just wants to be left alone to dream in peace. Interestingly, this is inverted at the end when his own invention makes him realize that he's only been dreaming for himself and didn't care enough about others, implying that everyone else needed his help and the real Woobie was actually all of them.