With the upcoming Ninja Turtles reboot I’d like to put forward some ideas for a solid trilogy that sets up an additional arc. If anyone reading this would like to pay me for these ideas I am open to that as well. We’ll start with the turtles themselves, and the one thing I thought had promise from the Bay films. Giving the turtles each a more distinct look makes sense on a multitude of levels(the cartoons are doing this now). It helps visually separate them in action sequences and can work to reinforce their personalities. In the original live action films the turtles were the size of a grown man, because that was who was in the suits. Bay went the opposite direction making them giant and bullet proof. I’d return to the original comics and make them all smaller than the people around them. This can also help re-assert their underdog status.
With the word ‘ninja’ in the title the movies should have some memorable martial arts sequences, and I’d hire a separate choreographer for each turtles. Donatello should practice Aikido to match his personality. I’d make Michelangelo fight using Muy Tai, and Leonardo karate. Ralphael is trickier and would like to see him as a bit of a kick boxing brawler, unwilling to devote himself to a single style.
April should combine her various iterations, and work as a science reporter. I would model her after Neil DeGrasse Tyson. April, if done right should also become a fashion element/staple much the way Margot Robbie’s Harley Quin was, while bearing far less skin and much less sexulaized.
As for my favorite, Casey Jones should be Dwayne Johnson at the age of 20, or another way of thinking about it, a super jacked Tom Hanks at the beginning of his career. A physically intimidating presence with perfect comedic timing. Casting will be crucial and incredibly tricky.
Splinter should be modeled on the IDW comic run, and while I would embrace the reincarnation aspects of the comics I would keep the elements subtle.
The footsoldiers should be like zombies in the Walking Dead. A single one is easily overcome, however a sense of dread should be present when there are a group. Different style from straight ninja, to commandos would also be nice to see.
As for the story, the first three films should be the story of Shredder, embracing him as a truly menacing figure. The first movie I would model after Red Harvest/Yojimbo with the foot clan working to consolidate power in New York. Working on Shredder’s behalf, Tatsu and Karia will brining a mutant enforcer to rival gangs. The mutants should be as scary as a family film will allow and any pair from the pantheon of villains would work fine. An unmutated Baxter Stockman will be the source of the mutants with a brief hint of dimension x(and element for the second arc). Baxter should be seen like an Elon Musk figure, being a public intellectual foil to April. Shredder should be kept literally in the shadows with maybe one or two shows of intensive force demonstrating why he is so feared. He should give orders in a darkened throne room and beside his seat are two figures completely obscured by shadow which he will gesture towards threateningly until the final scene where after Tatsu fails Shredder he says the names, “Beebop, Rocksteady,” And they emerge mauling and killing Tatsu like something out of Jurassic Park. Karai is dishonored and sent away to redeem herself.
The second film should be Shredder’s revenge and have a feel similar to the original Terminator he is coming for you and is unstoppable. The turtles through the film should lose nearly every battle and be constantly taken off guard, barely escaping. A foot soldier should ambush April while she’s on the air. Casey will take the blow and barely survive. Shredder will ambush the turtles and Splinter. During the encounter Splinter will sacrifice himself so the turtles can escape. It should be unclear to the audience if he lives or dies, but the tone should be clear his death is a possibility. The film will end with Casey near death, with April and the Turtles arriving at April’s farm defeated both physically and mentally.
The trilogy’s end will begin slowly and focus on Leonardo’s sense of failure pulling him back from his needed leadership role and Raphael stepping up. Unable to deal with his anger Leo will take up strength training, while Raphael begins to meditate. Casey will be on crutches and incredibly feeble. Eventually Donatello and April will discover Shredder’s plan to release large amounts of Mutagen on New York. With true reluctance the turtles develop a plan that involves coordinating remotely with April from the farm. Casey unable to fight is left behind. As the turtles leave we learn that they were traced to the farm and a deployment of foot soldiers is on the way. A weakened Casey will help April fending off the attacks while she support the turtles.
The turtles will separate shortly after arriving at the location for the final showdown, each with a specific mission. It will all go to hell quickly Donatello will be forced to confront Rocksteady alone, Michelangelo will confront Beebop. Leonardo and Raphael will move through waves of foot soldiers before being seperated. This will result in Raphael facing Shredder alone. Raphael will get some good hits in, using the focus he learned from his leadership role but be horribly beaten. The three other turtles will check in by radio, Leonardo will lie to the others to leave and meet at a rendezvous point before he moves into the building in search of Raphael. Leonardo will then fight Shredder building on the damage Raphael did before unquestionably killing him using a sai. Within this a rescue of Splinter should take place, also emphasizing Leonardo’s decision to send the others to safety before attempting a rescue of Raphael.
A second storyline with Baxter and DimensionX could come next, with some lite groundwork laid before.
Lasly and least importantly, the soundtrack. I’d like to see a PG collaboration with the Wu Tang Clan. With four members as stand ins for each turtle.
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