Care Bears, the toy, television show, movie, cross-platform wonders from the 1980s are back. They have been completely re-imagined as CGI, and still have the unbounded optimism that was their hallmark twenty years ago.
A new Care Bears DVD release, Care Bears: Oopsy Does It! features some of the classic bears along with a new character, Oopsy Bear. Oopsy is the one Care Bear who doesn't have a belly badge. Instead, Oopsy carries a multicolored pencil which he uses to draw various badges from time to time on his belly as a joke (they do not provide Oopsy with any special abilities). As Oopsy's name indicates, he is accident prone, the Care Bear equivalent of Clumsy Smurf if you will. It is important to note that just like Clumsy Smurf, Oopsy's oopses are not the product of malice, he is just unlucky.
In this new feature, Oopsy is helping some of the other Care Bears, including the classics Grumpy Bear, Cheer Bear, and Funshine Bear, put together a new amusement park for all the bears in Care-a-lot. As one might predict however, Oopsy hurts the entire process more than he helps it, and with the opening only hours away, Oopsy is sent on the menial task of putting up signs to the new park.
Meanwhile, somewhere outside Care-a-lot, the evil Grizzle is planning a dastardly scheme to take all the Care Bears' belly badges using a machine he has built called the Care-taker. In order for the machine to work he needs to obtain the powers of three bears and sends his henchman, a robot named Wingnut, to accomplish the task. Wingnut, not being the smartest of henchman, mistakes Oopsy's drawn on belly badge for an actual one and returns with him to Grizzle. Oopsy is tricked by Grizzle into helping him get the caretaker up and running. In the end, Oopsy realizes what is going on and becomes the only Care Bear who can save the day.
The basics of the plot may be well-worn, but there is an enthusiasm to the Bears and the script that make this forgivable. Adults looking for a retro-fix will be both pleased and distressed by the new Care Bears. Still present is their generosity, spark, and infectious glee, but the CGI animation does create a vastly different look to the series.
Of course, children have little to no experience with the Care Bears and the two decade old show, so the new look won't make any sort of difference to the younger generation. Additionally, at just over 70 minutes, the movie provides a more fleshed out story than the average episode of a Saturday morning cartoon.
Care Bears: Oopsy Does It! will almost certainly provide enjoyment for young children; the glee of the bears is hard to ignore, without offending any parents in the room. It may not be new or different, but the movie does use a well-liked formula.
The DVD comes with only a single bonus feature, a Care Bears music video. It will be released October 23, 2007.