Xpress, the Coolest Section of the St. Petersburg Times, is the home for features, news and views of interest to young readers. Most of the work in Xpress, which appears on Mondays in Floridian, is produced by the Times' X-Team. The team of journalists ages 9-17 from around the Tampa Bay area is selected every year at the end of the school year to serve during the following school term. The current team of 12 was chosen out of 150 applicants. Watch for X-Team application forms in Xpress during the month of May.

Read the reviews by Xpress Film Critic Billy Norris

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Movie review

For teens, 'Yu-Gi-Oh' not in the cards

Published August 23, 2004

[Warner Bros. Pictures]
Yugi is fighting a plot to take over the world in Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie.

Billy Norris
Read the reviews by Xpress Film Critic Billy Norris

Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie

Rating: PG for scary combat and monster images

Summary: Yugi, a master Yu-Gi-Oh card "duelist," is pitted against his rival, Seto Kaiba, who has been turned into an evil vehicle for an ancient spirit's plot to take over the world.

My View: Basically just an elaborate instructional video on how to play the Yu-Gi-Oh! trading-card game, this film does not have much substance. It pleases the most adamant followers of the anime television/comic book/trading card series while trying to entertain the older siblings and parents who have been dragged into the theater by card-toting little ones. The general consensus among the aforementioned little ones (ages 6 to 9) is that this epic battle rocked. I noted the audience taking a special liking to the card-dueling scenes, which quickly grew into redundancies and hokey explanations of tips and tricks for playing better Yu-Gi-Oh! I'm definitely not an anime guy, and never will be, but this style of expression fits here. Comedic references went flying over the kids' heads, yet kept the older ones hanging on by a (thin) thread. Sarcasm abounds, and is most apparent in such phrases as "Wow, you're a regular Sherlock Holmes - did you figure that one out all by yourself?" As agonizingly sedative as it is for a teenager to sit through, this movie does get the job done by thoroughly pleasing the most cinematically starved age group.

Recommendations: Fans only.

Grade: B (for the kids) plus D (for the rest of us) equals an overall C.

- Billy Norris, 16, is in the 11th grade at Seminole High School and is a former member of the X-Team.

[Last modified August 20, 2004, 12:51:35]

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