Secret of NIMH 2
January 18, 2011
(The title card for Sequel Month appears where a stick figure of the NC’s face looking disgusted is shown)
(Dissolve to NC loading his gun, zipping up his black coat, grabbing his S.W.A.T. helmet, putting on his brass knuckles, grabbing his paddle, putting on his helmet, securing his gun in his jacket, and then finally sitting at his chair to face the screen with paddle in hand; camera zoom up on his face)
NC: BRING IT ON!
(The title screen for "Secret of NIMH 2" is shown, followed by a montage of clips from the movie and the first “Secret of NIMH” Oh, God, is this going to be painful.)
NC (voiceover): In keeping with Sequel Month, I give you one of the sequels I’ve gotten the most requests to review: “The Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue.” By God, have a lot of people told me to review this. Maybe because I’ve praised the first one as an animated classic, and have even admitted to it being one of my favorite movies. The story about Mrs. Brisby and the Rats of NIMH was dark, dramatic, yet still had an element of wonder that makes it--what I consider--a masterpiece of animation. So, as you can imagine, (sighs) I’m not looking forward to this one. Just look at the cover. Mrs. Brisby isn’t even on it. And who’s the star now? Timmy. Timmy! That kid that just got one line in the first film. What the fuck has he ever done, outside of…not die?
NC: (wearing his normal clothes) Well, let’s see what the damage is. Let’s dive right into…(readies his paddle)…”Secret of NIMH 2.”
(The movie begins)
NC (voiceover): So the movie begins with the not-so-wise idea of showing us footage from the first film, making us realize how much we’re gonna hate this one.
Narrator (voiced by Peter MacNicol): They went through experiments. They'd become…intelligent. None of them would’ve survived were it not for the incredible bravery of that great mouse Jonathan Brisby. (shows Justin giving out his speech to the rats, but his voice is dubbed over by the narrator) “We must leave no evidence that the Rats of NIMH ever existed!” (normal) But Jonathan Brisby’s widow and her family stayed behind…
NC (voiceover): Oh, nice. Mrs. Brisby, after all the shit she’s been through, gets the incredible honor of widow status. Oh, she also did a few other things, but fuck it, they weren’t important!
Narrator: The prophet Nicodemus predicted that NIMH would again thrust its evil on the rats, and a son of Jonathan Brisby would be chosen to save them.
NC (voiceover): Uh, no! No, he didn’t. You just made that up. Insert immediate downgrade in animation and then we see where our current story begins. We see Timmy and his brother Martin riding each other’s nuts until some evil scientists start following them. Fortunately, they give them the slip.
Young Martin: (to Young Timmy) Hero. (laughs)
Young Timmy: Don’t…call me that, Martin! You’re the hero type. Oh, Nicodemus should’ve chosen you.
Young Martin: For once, you’re right. I’m older and stronger than you. If Thorn Valley wanted Jonathan Brisby’s son, why’d they pick the runt?
NC (voiceover): Wait a minute, why is it suddenly Timmy who’s picked to be the chosen one? Jonathan had two sons. That made-up prophecy you pulled out of your ass didn’t say anything about Timmy being the hero, so why doesn’t Martin have a shot?
Young Martin: Fire!
Young Timmy: (tries to use a slingshot, but ends up hurting himself with it) Ow!
Young Martin: (laughs) I know you’re trying. Remember: “Some try, Brisbys do.”
(clip from “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back”)
Yoda: There is no try.
(back to the movie)
NC (voiceover): So we see the rest of the family all grown up, including Mrs. Brisby, who, I guess, became nearsighted in-between movies.
Young Timmy: But, Mom, I don’t wanna go. (hugs his mother)
Mrs. Brisby: (hugs back) Timmy, we all know what your father meant to the rats of Thorn Valley.
Young Martin: He helped them get away from NIMH. Pop was a real hero.
Mrs. Brisby: That’s right! And--
Young Timmy: I know, and they want me to be like him, but--
Young Martin: “But” nothing.
NC (voiceover): Boy, no pressure on this kid! They just give him a direct order to be exactly like your father, the great hero! God, do you think Jesus’ parents acted that way?
NC: (speaks as Jesus’ father to a Photoshopped image of Jesus as a kid while calming, holy music plays in the background) Now, Jesus, you know your mother and I are very, very proud of you. (inhales through his teeth) But…if it’s at all possible…do you mind dying for our sins? (record scratch as music stops, and baby Jesus looks at NC in shock) Just askin’! Just askin’!
NC (voiceover): So, it’s sort of hard to understand, but I guess Timmy is being sent to the rats to train in their ways and become a stronger person. You know, just leaving the rest of the kids to waste their “non-prophesized lives” away.
NC: (as a rat from NIMH) Of course, you’re welcome to Thorn Valley! There’s plenty of education for every--(realizes something) OOOH! (inhales through his teeth) You’re not a Messiah, are ya? Yyyyeah, public school’s right down the street.
NC (voiceover): And, for that matter, I thought the rats left Thorn Valley! That doesn’t look like a thorn bush, it looks more like a tree! What, did they not want to change all their business cards? So Jeremy finally drops Timmy off at the valley. Well, good, maybe here, they’ll finally treat him like a normal p- (a banner that says “Welcome Timothy” is being hoisted up) Ohh…really?
Girl mouse: (sings) You wanna relax, then take what you please / There’s candy galore and it’s all made of cheese.
Mouse Chorus: (sings) You wanna play ball, and hit a home run / You wanna play loud, you can be number one.
NC (voiceover): Aw, geez, so you’re gonna treat him like a god, too? You’re doing the red carpet, you’re throwing him a parade? You know, I’m sorry, I’m still gonna dwell on this: You do not treat your child this way, especially if he hasn’t done anything yet! It’ll place a ton of pressure and stress that could scar the little brat for life! It’s basic Psychology 101. His family shouldn’t be doing it, and his school shouldn’t be doing it, either.
NC: Now, I know what you’re thinking. (speaks while intercutting with clips from the “Harry Potter” movies) Hogwarts acted that way with Harry Potter, treating him like a child prodigy. Well, folks, maybe Hogwarts isn’t that great a school. Wake up. What’s the child fatality rate again? Hell, they drown half of their students just for their equivalent of water polo! I wouldn’t trust ‘em! Oh, by the way, how’s that Harry kid turning out, anyway? (clip of Harry being tortured by a Dementor) I thought so.
NC (voiceover): So after meeting Mr. Ages and Justin--who’s voiced by William H. Macy for some reason--Thorn Valley teaches him all about their science and technology.
Justin: You know, Timmy, when your father saved the rats of NIMH, he didn’t know that was his destiny.
Young Timmy: But I’m not my father!
Justin: Well, let’s let history be the judge of that, shall we?
NC: (mimics Justin) I get the feeling that history’s gonna say…you are your father, whether you like it or not. (looks away with a smile)
NC’s Young Timmy: (offscreen) But, Justin, I don’t feel that--(NC pretends to slap “Timmy” while still smiling)
NC (voiceover): So, literally, the next 20 minutes or so is just building up what a fucking godsend Timmy’s going to be.
Justin: You’ve got to be ready, mentally and physically! (swings across a small river on a vine) Ha-ha!
Young Timmy: Ready for what?
Justin: To fulfill your destiny.
Young Timmy: Everyone keeps saying that, but I don’t know what I’m supposed to do.
Justin: Right now, nobody does, Timmy. You’ve got to adapt and improvise.
NC (voiceover): It really is incredible. Nothing about this kid indicates that he has great intelligence or great leadership skills. Oh, I’m sorry, except for that “great prophecy.” (cuts to clips of Nicodemus from the first “Secret of NIMH” film) OK, Nicodemus was a wise soul and could predict a lot of things that were going to happen, but you know what? He sure couldn't predict when a fucking brick was gonna fall on him and crush him into a Nico-pancake! So I think that means he can make a mistake every once in a while.
Nicodemus (from "The Secret of NIMH"): We know too much.
NC (voiceover): So Timmy shows off one of his new skills by setting up traps for dangerous wildlife.
Young Timmy: (pulls a string on a balloon that a snake just ate, inflating it and launching the snake into the sky) And don’t come back! (to Mr. Ages, laughing) That ol’ snake won’t be hunting us for breakfast anymore!
Mr. Ages: Well, at least I know what happened to the weather balloon I asked you to get for me.
Young Timmy: (sighs) I’m sorry. I was trying to help make the valley safe.
Mr. Ages: The valley is safe enough!
NC: Oh, yes, of course. Except for THAT FUCKING SNAKE!
Mr. Ages: What have I been trying to teach you all these months?
Young Timmy: Um…that it’s OK for guys to wear the same underwear three days in a row?
Mr. Ages: (chuckles) Well…that was just between us.
NC: (confused) You’re not even wearing pants.
NC (voiceover): So Mr. Ages explains why Timmy’s snake experiment isn’t as good as he thinks it should be.
Mr. Ages: If snakes go flying through the air, humans might find out about Thorn Valley, and we might be in real danger.
Young Timmy: From who?
Mr. Ages: From NIMH.
Young Timmy: What’s NIMH?
Mr. Ages: Let’s hope you never find out.
NC (voiceover): Wait a minute, he doesn’t even know what NIMH is?! What have they been telling this kid? Who did Jonathan save the rats from? The Nazis?!
Mr. Ages: Always see the big picture.
Young Timmy: (to Jonathan’s statue in the square) I’ll never be you! (starts to sing poorly) Never live up to the deeds that you did / Why don’t I have you?
NC (voiceover): (laughs) Oh, great! Now we can add “Can’t sing” to his resume! You know, if he was to apply to any other fancy school, he’d be thrown out in a millisecond.
NC: (as Dean of an elite school) Sir, what makes you think you’re Harvard material?
NC: (as Young Timmy) Well, I can’t do anything, haven’t done anything, don’t plan on doing anything, but this dead guy says I’m the Messiah! (NC Dean frowns) Oh, and I can’t sing, either. (Cut to NC Dean not in his chair) You used to be there, didn’t you? But…but now, you’re not. (cut to empty chair again, and NC Timmy sighs unhappily)
NC (voiceover): So Timmy grows up into a teenager, played by the Karate Kid himself, Ralph Macchio, and guess what? He can’t sing, either.
Timmy: (sings) And they’ll tell our story / They’ll know what we’ve done!
NC: (mimicking Mr. Miyagi by pretending to wash a car) Key on, key off. Key on, key off.
NC (voiceover): So, after all his training, on his first adventure to obtain food, what does Timmy end up doing? They give him a whistle to blow in case he spots trouble. Uh, bullshit! All everybody ever tells him is he’s a hero, he’s a chosen one! Now you’re telling him his destiny is to be a whistle blower? What the fuck kind of mixed messages are they trying to tell this kid?
Nicodemus (from "The Secret of NIMH"): We know too much.
NC (voiceover): But he comes across another mouse named Jenny, who, it turns out, actually escaped from NIMH.
(cut to a courtroom in Thorn Valley where Justin, Mr. Ages and the council speak to Jenny and Timmy after Timmy makes a mistake on the adventure)
Justin: Tim, you left your post. You put us all in danger!
Timmy: But, I--
Justin: You’ve got to learn to listen. You always think you know better than everyone else!
NC: (sarcastic) Gee, I wonder where he got that idea? Maybe it was the fucking parade proclaiming that he knows better than everyone else!
Nicodemus (from "The Secret of NIMH"): We know too much.
NC (voiceover): So Jenny explains how her parents are being held at NIMH and how the experiments are getting more and more out of control, mostly run by a crazy scientist named Valentine.
Jenny: Dr. Valentine is crazier than ever! My parents and the others sent me to find you.
NC (voiceover): So this must be the rescue the movie was talking about! Well, great! When do we get going?
Mr. Ages: I’m afraid you ask too much of us, Miss McBride.
NC: (puzzled) Why??
Justin: The council decided that the risk to Thorn Valley was just too great.
NC (voiceover): (sputters with rage) Thorn Valley isn’t going, so what the fuck are you talking about?!
Jenny: The answer is “no”, isn’t it?
Justin: (with Jerry Lundegaard’s [also played by William H. Macy in “Fargo”] voice dubbed over) Ma’am, I answered your question! I answered the darn—I’m cooperating here. And there…there’s no, um….we’re doing all we can. (long awkward pause between Jenny and Justin)
Jenny: I guess I’m going to have to do this myself. I’m not going to let anything happen to my mother and father, and that’s that. (she starts to leave)
(Brutus steps in front of her, blocking her way)
Brutus: We can’t let you leave.
NC (voiceover): Well, wait a minute, now they’re holding her against her will?
Mr. Ages: (to Timmy and Jenny in their room before leaving and closing the door) Good night, children. Sorry to keep you as prisoner.
NC (voiceover): What the hell? When did the Rats of NIMH become a hostage cult?
Timmy: How’d you know about Thorn Valley?
Jenny: (getting out blankets to make a rope out of) When I was little, I remember a mouse in the cage next to ours telling my parents that the rats escaped from NIMH had settled in a place called Thorn Valley. I remember him saying it was “South by south by south.”
Timmy: Martin…said that.
Jenny: How did you know?
Timmy: My mom’s letter said he disappeared. (takes out a letter and unfolds it) She had no idea what happened to him.
NC: Wait, wait, w-w-w-w-w-w-w-w-w-wait. Letter? What letter? We never saw a letter. Martin’s missing? When did that happen?
NC (voiceover): She said this happened when she was little. Martin’s been gone that long? How come it doesn’t affect Timmy? Your fucking brother’s gone, and all you did is stuff your face and sing off key? The fuck’s wrong with you?! This isn’t our savior! He doesn’t even give a shit for when his own flesh and blood disappears! How would you react if the Rats of NIMH ever got abducted?
NC: (as a Rat from NIMH) Timmy! Quick! Justin’s been captured!
NC: (as Timmy, looking bored) Oh. OK, then.
(Title card: 10 Years Later)
NC: (as Timmy, still looking bored, but then comes to a realization) Oh, my God, I--! Wait, no.
(Title card: 10 More Years Later)
NC: (as Timmy, now coming to a realization) Oh, my God, Justin’s been captured? I have to do something! (takes a gun and aims at his head before making a dopey face) Duhh! (shoots himself and collapses his head on the desk)
NC (voiceover): So Timmy, after just a mere couple of years after hearing the news, finally goes to save his brother along with Jenny, who’s off to save her parents, but a nasty hawk bursts their bubble and they plummet to the ground. They come across a caterpillar who says he can lead them to the Great Owl, which it turns out is not the Great Owl, but actually Jeremy, posing as the Great Owl.
NC: Now, if you even give an inkling about the first film at all, you’re probably asking, “Why?”
NC (voiceover): Well, it’s so Jeremy and the caterpillar can scam people out of money by charging them for asking questions. Hey, uh, here’s a question for you, Mr. Owl. Um, WHAT THE FUCK DO ANIMALS NEED WITH MONEY? You’re…you know…animals!
(Jeremy’s cover gets blown as his disguise gets caught in a tree branch; the caterpillar notices this and is shocked)
Caterpillar: Your wig!
Jeremy: (notices as well) Oh! I see. Wait.
Animals: Get the crow!
NC (voiceover): (as Jenny and Timmy catch a ride on Jeremy) So, just to recap everybody: Jeremy’s a criminal, Justin and Mr. Ages are kidnappers, and Timmy doesn’t even bat an eye as his brother is being tortured for several years. Sheesh, and I thought the first film was dark. This is downright diabolical!
Jenny: (points) There it is.
(a shot of the city where NIMH is located is shown)
NC (voiceover): So Jeremy finally flies Timmy and Jenny to NIMH, and it turns out that Justin and Mr. Ages have a change of heart and decide to join them as well. And, I have to be honest, as we near the third act of this film, I’m not seeing the spectacular badness it’s supposed to have.
NC: I mean, don’t get me wrong. It’s bad! But…it’s just sort of basic “dumb sequel” bad. I mean, nothing really propels it into incredibly awful.
(cut to all the scientists in a caged room acting like dogs)
Timmy: Jenny, look! What happened to them?
Jenny: He’s turned the humans into dogs!
(NC slows puts on his S.W.A.T. helmet)
NC (voiceover): OK, so the evil scientist is turning the other scientists into dogs? Why would he do that?
(cut to rat bodyguards marching through)
Rat bodyguards: Left! Left! Left, right, left!
NC (voiceover): And he’s turning rats into bodyguards?
NC: What exactly is this guy’s evil plan?
Evil mouse: Timothy, how you have grown! I sort of have changed a bit, but for the better, don’t you think…"Hero"?
NC: (is completely stunned) ........................What?
Martin: It’s me, the new and improved Martin, and I made the most of it!
NC (voiceover): MARTIN IS THE BAD GUY?! MARTIN?!!
Martin: (sings) I was far too smart / From the very start.
NC: And he has the voice of Eric Idle?
Martin: (sings) I began to grow / Little did he know.
NC: And he sings?!
Martin: (sings) My own plans for him / He thought I was tame.
NC: And he’s the one who turned the scientists into dogs?
Martin: (sings) MINE!
NC: (stutters in disbelief) And-and-and-and-and-and…
Martin: (sings, while clips with NC reacting in disbelief in various ways cut in, including slapping his head to get a mental sense of what is going on here) They all do as I say / No one stands in my way / Everybody here is happy / I have them slightly altered! / I can do as I please / I can change things with ease / Horns or hair or fin or feather / I control the wind and weather / We can rule the world together! / If you come with me. / You’ll be happy, Oh, so happy / When you come with me / You’ll be king of everything of all that you can see!
(Martin shocks himself and laughs diabolically, to which NC stares into the camera in confusion)
Martin: (sings) Just say “Yes!” Hero!
Martin: (sings) Look what we two can do / You and me, me and you! / Buck yourself, but don’t look….
NC: (gets fed up and points to the camera in rage, finally finding the right words) DUMB! THIS IS DUMB! It can’t be for real! It can’t be! No movie could possibly be this stupid! It has to be a dream sequence or…what the hell am I even looking at?! It’s like Candyland if it was designed by Charles Manson! Somebody else took over this movie! An insane asylum, probably!
Martin: (sings) You’ll be happy / Nice and happy / If you just say “Yes!”
NC: I’m at a loss for words. I mean, this has got to be the freaking dumbest twist I’ve ever seen in my life! I mean…the mouse is a mad scientist? (pauses) What…sick twisted brain would come up with something so stupid?!
(cut to Dr. Insano (played by Noah Antwiler, aka Spoony) typing on his laptop)
Dr. Insano: “And then the mouse turns into a mad scientist and betrays all his friends.” (pauses to absorb what he just wrote) Genius! It’s a work of genius! (laughs wildly) I’m gonna call my creative consultant and see what he thinks!
Spider Smith: (calls on his phone) Wonderful! So the mouse becomes the mad scientist? Wonderful! It’s brilliant, absolutely brilliant! You’ve really outdone yourself this time, Insano.
Dr. Insano: I know! Now, every child in the world will know that they can no longer escape the clutches of science!
(They both laugh their heads off for a bit; Dr. Insano even bangs his head on the table while laughing)
NC (voiceover): I mean, it’s incredible, it’s absolutely incredible! You know what this is like? I…Oh, no.
NC: No no no no no no no no, I can’t even make the comparison! I can’t, it’s too stupid to make. (places a hand on his face, then sighs) But it’s true! It’s so true! “The Secret of NIMH”—this wonderful, creative film—has officially become a mouse with scientific abilities trying to take over the world…you know where this is goin’!
(The theme music from “Pinky and the Brain” starts playing as NC imitates Timmy’s and Martin’s voices in place of those of Pinky and the Brain.)
NC (voiceover): (as Timmy) Gee, Martin, what’re we gonna do tonight?
NC (voiceover): (as Martin) The same thing we do every night, stupid! Try to take over the world!
Off-screen Singers: (as the lyrics are displayed on-screen parodying its inspiration) They’re Timmy and the Brain / Yes, Timmy and the Brain / One is a genius and also insane / To take over the world, they’ll butt-rape this sequel / They’re wimpy, they’re Timmy and the Brain Brain Brain Brain…
Martin: YES! (drops Timmy from high above)
NC (voiceover): So…(sighs)…after whatever the hell we just witnessed, Martin locks up Timmy and tells Jenny that he’s going to take over Thorn Valley and make her his queen. Why? Because the movie was written by monkeys! So Timmy manages to get out of his cage and goes to stop his brother and save everybody.
Martin: Stand still, will you? (attacks Jenny and Timmy with his cane)
NC (voiceover): So when you get down to it, the actual secret of NIMH in this movie was a totally insane mouse who had the voice of Eric Idle. I have to admit, that was a pretty well-kept secret. I never would have guessed that.
(Martin continues fighting with a sword that he kept secret in his cane)
NC (voiceover): So how does he defeat this diabolical genius? He throws the book at him.
(Jenny kicks a few books onto Martin)
Jenny: Here, that’s for being so evil!
NC: (holding his head in scornful disbelief) WEAK!
NC (voiceover): They help everybody escape, but the place catches fire, and Timmy wants to go in and save Martin.
Jenny: Tim! Where are you going?
Timmy: I’m doing what you said! I’m following my heart!
Jenny: I love you!
Timmy: Woo! I love you, too!
NC (voiceover): Boy, they said that pretty fast, didn’t they? They must have not had a lot of time to get through all the clichés!
NC: (as Timmy while fiddling through his papers trying to find the right cliché lines to say) Oh! And, uh, practice makes perfect, don’t do drugs, and, uh, there’s no place like home! Bye! (He gets up when a flaming ball of fire bursts out toward him from the left)
NC (voiceover): He finds Martin and manages to get him out of there before the place burns up. They get back to Thorn Valley, and everybody throws a parade for them. (both Jenny and Timmy kiss) Oh, by the way, Timmy and Jenny are in love. If you think that’s a cliff-note in my review, don’t. It’s a cliff-note in the movie, too. And it also turns out that Martin’s back to normal! How? Because they put a bandage on his head, and in all kids' movies, that seems to fix everything! You can be dying of cancer and a fucking bandage on your head will fix it!
Martin: (is back to normal--no Eric Idle voice--and talking to Timmy) You singlehandedly saved Thorn Valley.
Mr. Ages: Martin is correct, Timothy. The prophecy of Nicodemus came true. You have indeed fulfilled your destiny.
(Jeremy reveals a new statue of Timmy standing right up near the statue of his father as NC speaks)
NC (voiceover): So, let me get this straight: Timmy’s great destiny was to stop a jealous mastermind, who wouldn’t have been a jealous mastermind unless he heard that Timmy had a great destiny. In other words, if they didn’t fucking build him up, none of this would have happened! Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy, you dumbasses!
(A final shot of the two statues is shown before fading to black and NC’s caption “AND WHERE THE FUCK IS MRS. BRISBY’S STATUE???” appears. I agree, Critic. That is complete bull.)
NC: Folks…(sighs)…what can I say?
(Footage from the movie plays again)
NC (voiceover): Well, how about this? IT’S AWFUL! INCREDIBLY, CREDIBLY AWFUL! I mean, it starts off bad—“Bad sequel” bad--and then it just spirals into a world of absolute insanity. The choices they made to go with this story are just mind-boggling, I still can’t comprehend it! The only thing that’s remotely entertaining about this film is Eric Idle doing the voice of Martin, but even then, that’s just because he’s so batshit insane, that it’s sort of hard not to laugh at it. There’s still the fact that Martin’s the bad guy, there’s still the fact that they built up this kid who’s literally done nothing, there’s the fact of that stupid self-fulfilling prophecy, there’s the fact that Mrs. Brisby’s barely in it or the rest of the family, for that matter, it’s just…(sputters in rage)…IT’S SO TERRIBLE! And I’m not gonna stand for it!
NC: Something has to be done! (He runs outside with the DVD box of the movie and sets it in the snow outside his house, then runs a great distance away from it before talking into his phone) Do it!
(cut to footage from “Star Wars”)
Imperial officer: (after locking the DVD box of the movie on target) In range.
Governor Tarkin: You may fire when ready.
(Various buttons are pressed, and a laser shoots out from the Death Star and hits the DVD, destroying it and causing an explosion)
NC: (sighs) I’m the Nostalgia Critic, and Sequel Month is almost over! Just one more movie! (scoffs) I don’t even care what the hell it is!
Care Bear: (magically appears and speaks off-screen) Did someone say “care”?
(NC groans in agony)
Channel Awesome Tagline--Martin: (sings) If you just say “Yes!”
Spoony: (laughing his head off while in character as Dr. Insano, but then stops and laughs about what he just did) I’m gonna pay for that one day.