The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie is a film based on Nickelodeon's hit TV show SpongeBob SquarePants. In this movie, SpongeBob and Patrick set off for Shell City to retrieve the crown of King Neptune in order to stop Plankton from taking over the world.
A group of pirates get tickets to watch The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie from a treasure chest. The pirates then sing the "SpongeBob SquarePants Theme Song," enter a movie theater, raid it, and sit down to watch the movie.
The movie properly begins with an emergency at the Krusty Krab, complete with police helicopters, large crowds, and news reporters. Suddenly, SpongeBob SquarePants, "the manager," arrives in a sleek, awesome sports car. Mr. Krabs says that it started with a simple order, a Krabby Patty with cheese. "When the customer took a bite, no cheese!" Mr. Krabs starts crying, leading SpongeBob to slap him. He enters the Krusty Krab and meets a fish named Phil. SpongeBob then opens his suitcase, takes out a pair of tweezers, and dramatically puts cheese on the Krabby Patty. The day is saved, and the crowd starts cheering for SpongeBob. Their cheers soon degenerate to the sound of SpongeBob's alarm clock, and he wakes up, revealing the opening scene to be a dream.
SpongeBob is extremely excited, as today is the grand opening of the "Krusty Krab 2," and he is confident he will be chosen as the new manager and prepares himself for the day. Patrick Star's rock lifts up, and Patrick congratulates SpongeBob, saying that to celebrate, they are going to go to Goofy Goober's Ice Cream Party Boat after work. SpongeBob and Patrick sing the Goofy Goober theme song, and afterwards, SpongeBob goes off to the Krusty Krab. Plankton envies Mr. Krabs, and states he tried every plan in his cabinet from "A to Y." There are actually 26 letters of the alphabet, and Plankton does not notice it at first, but Karen, his computer wife, tells him. Plankton finds "Plan Z" in the back of the drawer. He thinks it is his best plan yet. He goes outside, only to be stepped on by SpongeBob. He pulls Plankton off his shoe, and asks him if he is going to the 'grand opening ceremony.' Plankton replies, "No, I am not going to the 'grand opening ceremony'! I'm busy planning to rule the world! Ha, ha, ha!" SpongeBob does not understand this, wishes Plankton luck, then runs off again, leaving Plankton to walk away saying, "Stupid kid." Meanwhile, Mr. Krabs is preparing the grand opening ceremony of the Krusty Krab 2, which is an exact replica of the original and is located directly next-door to it, the only difference being a giant glowing "2" on the Krusty Krab sign. SpongeBob rushes up to the stage to accept his promotion, but Mr. Krabs announces that Squidward is the new manager instead, much to SpongeBob's shock. Mr. Krabs tells a heartbroken SpongeBob that he is too immature and childlike to handle the task, and SpongeBob sulks away, saying "I'm ready ... depression." Patrick suddenly flies by, naked, with a SpongeBob banner in his butt, and crashes into the set, causing a fire.
Later, Plankton flies towards King Neptune's castle, as part of "Plan Z." Inside, Neptune is attempting to punish his royal crown polisher for touching his crown, but his more intelligent daughter, Mindy, stops him. The brutish and tyrannical king tries to explain to his daughter that he must enforce his power as king in order to be respected, and that she will have to do the same when she is Queen. He begins to explain the importance of his crown, and as he talks, Plankton arrives and steals it. Neptune, who is "bald," is horrified to discover that his crown is missing, Plankton having stolen it.
Meanwhile, SpongeBob is at Goofy Goober Ice Cream Party Boat brooding over his loss. Patrick arrives thinking SpongeBob is the manager, but he was told the truth about being a kid SpongeBob starts to leave, but then Patrick gets a Triple Gooberberry Sunrise, and SpongeBob comes back. They begin to eat dozens of Surprises burying the waiter in ice cream continuously saying "waiter." The two become "drunk" from all the ice cream, and SpongeBob falls asleep in the restaurant, experiencing hangover-like symptoms the morning afterwards.
Meanwhile, Neptune arrives at the Krusty Krab after receiving evidence planted by Plankton of Mr. Krabs stealing his crown, which is a note, saying, "I stole your crown. Signed, Eugene Krabs." Krabs denies stealing the crown, but a message then plays on the phone of a man thanking Mr. Krabs for giving him the crown and saying that he sold it to Shell City. This call is actually from Plankton. Neptune gets frustrated and plans to burn Mr. Krabs. However, before doing that, Neptune asks if anyone has anything to say to defend Mr. Krabs, and a "drunken" SpongeBob arrives and bad-mouths Mr. Krabs for not giving him the manager job, saying, "I've worked for Mr. Krabs for many years, and always thought he was a great boss. I now realize that he's a great big jerk! I deserved that manager job, but you didn't give it to me because you said I'm a kid! Well, I am 100 percent man, and this man has something to say to you!” He blows a long raspberry and then finishes his statement, “There! I think I made my point!" Neptune burns Mr. Krabs, but Mr. Krabs plunges into a barrel filled with water. Upon realizing the severity of the situation, SpongeBob returns to his normal self and refuses to let Neptune kill him. Neptune then prepares to fry them both, but Mindy convinces her father to give SpongeBob a chance to prove Mr. Krabs' innocence. Neptune orders SpongeBob to be back with his crown in 10 days but Patrick appears out of nowhere and starts bragging, causing the days to be reduced to six. H Patrick agree to travel to the dreaded Shell City, and return with the crown, and freezes Krabs right there until the crown is returned. Squidward panics, mostly over his paycheck not being signed. Originally SpongeBob, Patrick, and Squidward go on the trip, but the latter refuses and walked out of the Krusty Krab. Mindy, whom Patrick develops a crush on, gives SpongeBob and Patrick a magical Bag of Winds to return home with and warned about the trip.
With six days to retrieve the crown (there were originally ten until King Neptune and Patrick argued it down to six), SpongeBob and Patrick take the "Patty Wagon," a car shaped like a Krabby Patty. They soon reach a gas station located on the county line, where the hillbilly owners laugh at them, finding the duo and their vehicle stupid. They tell SpongeBob and Patrick that they would not last for ten seconds over the county line. When SpongeBob and Patrick cross the line, a thug immediately steals their car. SpongeBob and Patrick then realize that they lasted for twelve seconds, and begin laughing at the hillbillies, who are dumbfounded by their idiocy, as they continue on foot. Later, they find their car parked at the "Thug Tug," a bar for tough, muscular fish. SpongeBob has Patrick distract the thugs so he can get the key. (Unfortunately, Patrick just said, "I have to go to the bathroom," making SpongeBob unsuccessful, and getting his hands dirty in the process.) SpongeBob heads for the bathroom to wash his hands, and when he uses the soap dispenser, it produces bubbles. SpongeBob and Patrick begin having a "Bubble Party," but one bubble floats over to the leader of the "Thug Tug," who reminds the other bar patrons of the policy that all "Bubble Blowing Babies" will be severely beaten. The leader goes on a "Bubble Blowing Baby Hunt" by turning on the Goofy Goober Theme song, where the first person to start singing is determined to be the culprit. SpongeBob and Patrick struggle not to start singing, then the owner starts singing it to SpongeBob and Patrick, causing SpongeBob's eyes to water and Patrick to start melting, and they are only saved when Siamese Twins burst out in song. The other thugs begin beating them, allowing SpongeBob and Patrick to steal the key amid the confusion and depart.
By the following day, Plankton, with Mr. Krabs incapacitated, obtains the Krabby Patty secret formula, and begins serving Krabby Patties at the Chum Bucket. He stole the formula by sneaking by Mr. Krabs while he was frozen, going into his office, entering the safe code, and stealing the formula. Plankton starts selling Krabby Patties at the Chum Bucket, along with free bucket helmets. He has also learned about SpongeBob and Patrick are trying to get the crown back and hires a professional mercenary named Dennis to ensure that SpongeBob and Patrick do not reach Shell City. The next day, Squidward sees that everyone is wearing helmet buckets. After a woman tells him that Plankton is giving them away free with the Krabby Patties, he goes to confront Plankton. Squidward figures out that Plankton was the one who stole King Neptune's crown to get the Krabby Patty formula. He decides to report him to King Neptune, but before he leaves the Chum Bucket, Plankton activates a mind-control device, revealing that the bucket helmets are actually mind controlling helmets. Squidward tries to escape, but the enslaved citizens corner and capture him, taking down the last opposition to Plankton in Bikini Bottom and transforms the city into "Planktopolis." SpongeBob and Patrick are traveling through a field of skulls, laughing over their victory at the Thug Tug. They see an Ice Cream Stand, but when SpongeBob goes to order, the old woman running the stand is revealed as the tongue of a monstrous Frogfish using the Ice Cream Stand as bait. The Frogfish chases SpongeBob and Patrick, eventually driving off a cliff and getting out of the car just in time. The Frogfish is lured off the edge, and subsequently is eaten by an even larger beast, which is a gigantic sea serpent that appears from the trench. Unable to pass through a monster-filled trench, SpongeBob decides to give up and accepts the fact that he and Patrick are just children. However, Mindy arrives and shows them what has happened to Bikini Bottom while they were gone, and gives them fake mustaches in the form of seaweed, convincing them that they are now men. SpongeBob and Patrick pass through the trench without fear (singing, "Now That We're Men"), but meet up with Dennis on the other side. He rips off their fake mustaches and explains to them that they are not really men, and prepares to kill them by crushing them under his boot. However, before he can do so, a gigantic boot crushes Dennis, belonging to a monstrous scuba diver known as "The Cyclops," who abducts SpongeBob and Patrick to the surface.
SpongeBob and Patrick wake up in a goldfish bowl filled with freshwater and sedimentary pebbles. They see the Cyclops making "knick-knacks" from "dead" sea creatures, much to their horror, and are soon taken out of the bowl and put on a table under a heat lamp, and start to dry up. Soon, SpongeBob laments that they have failed, and that Bikini Bottom will remain under Plankton's mind control, Mr. Krabs will be executed, and they too will die. Patrick points out a sign reading "Shell City: Marine Gifts and Sundries." SpongeBob realizes that they are in Shell City, which is in fact a gift shop. They see the crown, and SpongeBob then realizes that they did at least make it to Shell City, and did pretty well for "a couple of goofballs." They both shed a tear and begin singing the Goofy Goober song, just as they shrivel up. The faces get smaller, Patrick's body shape gets round bevel edges and SpongeBob's legs and arms roll up into the sleeves. "Goofy, Goofy, Goober, G--," they stop, then die and become real with their faces being faded away. Back in the movie theater, all the pirates mourn the loss of SpongeBob and Patrick, but a talking parrot points out that the movie is not over yet and they continue watching it. The "Tear of the Goofy Goober" slides down a wire into the power outlet, causing it to short-circuit and let out smoke, which rises up and activates the fire suppression sprinkler system, causing all the sea creatures to reanimate and the table with the lamp to cool off. As the water drips from the system, SpongeBob and Patrick first get saturated colors and then they become cartoon again upon resurrection. As the sea creatures (which include a mariachi band playing a song from Mexico) beat up "The Cyclops," SpongeBob and Patrick grab the crown and carry it out to the beach. There, SpongeBob reads the manual of the Bag of Winds, and Patrick accidentally releases it, leaving them stranded on the beach. However, David Hasselhoff arrives and carries them across the ocean on his back.
On the way back home, the big boot belonging to the same diver that kidnapped them, rises up sea, and an angry Dennis emerges from below it, intent on finishing the job Plankton gave him and goes after Patrick and SpongeBob with his dagger in hand (much to Hasselhoff's discomfort). He corners SpongeBob, who attempts to reason with Dennis (by bribing him with five Goober dollars); Dennis is uninterested, so SpongeBob proceeded to more offers - including a bubble-blower that sends a stream of bubbles to Dennis's eyes, blinding him and making him even angrier. However, just as he is about to stomp on them with his boot, he ends up being knocked into the ocean by a floating sailboat. As the duo arrive over Bikini Bottom, King Neptune is about to execute Mr. Krabs, but is being "stalled" by Mindy, but Neptune just thinks so. Hasselhoff opens his pectoral muscles, prepares countdown, and shoots the duo down into Bikini Bottom at fast speed, where they crash through the roof of the Krusty Krab, the crown deflecting the trident blast that nearly kills Mr. Krabs, and ends up burning Hasselhoff. Unfortunately, that does not stop Plankton, as he dumps a King-sized Chum Bucket Helmet on Neptune, also putting him under his control. As Plankton's minions surround the heroes, SpongeBob realized that Plankton didn't care whether Krabs should be fried or not he just wanted the power of the seas under his control, having used the theft of the crown to lure Neptune into the trap, thus he cheated. Plankton doubts to him to cheating, and he states to him that he is an evil genius and SpongeBob is just a kid---a stupid kid. SpongeBob makes a speech about being who you are, before transforming into a wizard and breaking out into a bizarre rock version of the Goofy Goober theme song (based on the Twisted Sister's I Wanna Rock) using his electric guitar's laser beams to destroy all the brain-control buckets with. When Plankton yells at Karen to do something, she is too lured by the rock and roll to listen.
Irritated, Plankton tries to command Neptune to stop SpongeBob but SpongeBob quickly destroys his helmet before he can finish speaking. Out of options, Plankton tries to escape but is trampled before he can do so, he's arrested for brainwashing the Bikini Bottom citizens and also for stealing Neptune's crown, and the cops put him in a little cage and take him away. Neptune reaches an understanding not only with Mr. Krabs, but also with his daughter, and thanks SpongeBob and Patrick. He then turns to leave, but Mindy reminds him about Mr. Krabs. He unfreezes Mr. Krabs, turning him into a fat little boy. Neptune then reveals that he had his trident set to "Real Boy Ending." He then turns Mr. Krabs into a crab again and apologizes to him for accussing him, and Mr. Krabs also apologizes to SpongeBob for doubting him. Squidward suggests to SpongeBob that he has learned that he does not really need to be the manager of the Krusty Krab 2, but SpongeBob eagerly takes the position anyway. Images shown throughout the end credits shown the sole two differences between the job of manager and fry-cook is that there is a giant hat with the word manager imprinted on it and an extra cent in his paycheck. Nonetheless, SpongeBob takes on the role of manager of the Krusty Krab 2 with great pride, as the film signifies the conclusion of the franchise's story.
Back in the theater, the usher tells the pirates to leave the theater so she can clean up the mess they left.
The movie is available on The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie DVD, UMD, and Blu-ray release.
It is also available on VHS, but since the VHS format was discontinued in 2006, this version is now out of print. The VHS version can still be bought used from a thrift store, or from online sites such as Amazon and eBay.
A video game based on the original film was released for PlayStation 2, PC, Game Boy Advance, Xbox, and GameCube on October 27, 2004. The home-console version was developed by Heavy Iron Studios, the Game Boy Advance version was developed by WayForward Technologies and was published by THQ.
There are more bubbles in the film than a regular SpongeBob episode. For instance, whenever the characters move or pull something, bubbles appear.
After the movie was made, Nickelodeon released a special issue of Nickelodeon Magazine about this film. It included interviews with the cast, an article about SpongeBob's origin, Patrick recounting his journey to Shell City, and a comic about Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy trying to stop Plankton during the events of the movie.
Some footage from the opening scene appears in the second movie's trailer.
Ironically, SpongeBob, Patrick, and the sea creatures breathe air in this movie. In the episode "Pressure," SpongeBob, Patrick, Mr. Krabs, and Squidward go on dry land and are changed to real-life props for the show. However, in Sandy's Treedome, they need Water Helmets. They take off their helmets in her treedome in "Survival of the Idiots" because the snow is made of water. However, when spring arrives, they are seen without the helmets and trying to escape because they ripped her fur off with tape to keep themselves warm.
In the final fight, SpongeBob isn't seen destroying the control aerial on the Chum Bucket controlling the citizens and is only seen destroying the bucket helmets. However, when Plankton goes to jail and every one is celebrating (even King Neptune), it would have been possible that the control aerial had been destroyed by SpongeBob's guitar.
In this movie, SpongeBob's voice is changed to a higher pitch for unknown reason, but it might be how older Tom Kenny is getting or the creators wanted his voice to be higher.
This change even carried on to later episodes, up to season 8.
Show creator Stephen Hillenburg confirmed that this movie takes place after the TV series. This actually makes sense, because in all of the episodes after the movie (including the second film), SpongeBob isn't the manager, Plankton is still at the Chum Bucket and trying to get the formula, and there is only one Krusty Krab, not two. The movie does take place before the episode "Lost and Found." It takes place in March 2030 or 2031.
The song "The Best Day Ever" heard during the end credits and in the movie's soundtrack would later be used in the episode "Best Day Ever," but shortened.
The scene where SpongeBob and Patrick, after escaping from Shell City, encounter Sandy on the surface, who here has the appearance of a real-life squirrel, was planned for the film but was cut for time. The animatic for the scene is included as a deleted scene on the DVD. The scene was removed due to the fact that Patrick barfs a lot in it.
The scene where SpongeBob and Patrick have their mouths wide open became popular on YouTube and a popular internet meme.
The scene where SpongeBob says "Whoo!" has become a very popular internet meme.
In other countries such as the Philippines, this movie is rated G. This is because their rating systems think that toilet humor can be suitable for all.
The series features a totally different King Neptune. Although in "Krusty Towers," Squidward mentions King Neptune XIV, possibly meaning that there are multiple King Neptune's which could explain this inconsistency.
In a deleted scene, during SpongeBob's awakening in Goofy Goober's Ice Cream Party Boat, he asks for a "double fudge spiny." This rejected line was used in a storybook based on this movie released during the time called Ice Cream Dreams.
The movie was dedicated in memory of Jule Engel (1909–2003). In September 2003, during production, Engel, Hillenburg's mentor when he studied experimental animation at the California Institute of the Arts, died. Hillenburg dedicated the film to him: "He truly was the most influential artistic person in my life. I consider him my 'Art Dad'."
This movie is a movie inside a movie, because the Pirates are watching the SpongeBob movie in an actual theater.
The Paramount Pictures (closing) logo appeared after the post-credit scene fades to blank. In the original theatrical release of this movie, the MPAA PG screen is shown after the logo fades to blank.
The Goofy Goober underwear that Patrick wears appears again in "Born to Be Wild."
This movie reveals that by March 2030 or 2031, SpongeBob learns how to drive a stick-shift vehicle.
During the first half of the closing credits to this movie, SpongeBob's Krusty Krab Employee Hat appears to be bigger than normal, and it vertically reads "MANAGER."
In the movie, Plankton is more evil and depraved than he was in the series. While in the series, he was comical and in post-movie episodes, became less evil (while Mr. Krabs has gotten more greedy and evil), but in the movie, he stole King Neptune's crown, frames Mr. Krabs for it, enslaves Bikini Bottom, shows excitement and joy when Mr. Krabs is going to be executed, and hires Dennis to kill SpongeBob and Patrick rather than merely get rid of them.
SpongeBob tells Squidward that his fly is down even though he doesn't wear pants.
When Patrick and King Neptune argue about how many days they should get for their journey, it is similar to how he and the Flying Dutchman argue about how many wishes SpongeBob and he should get in "Shanghaied."
Patrick also argued to King Neptune before in "Neptune's Spatula" on how many challenges SpongeBob will have.
The movie contains references to the epic Greek poem "The Odyssey" by Homer, specifically the Bag Of Winds and "The Cyclops" (undersea diver).
The song "Goofy Goober Rock" is a parody of the song "I Wanna Rock" by Twisted Sister.
When SpongeBob and Patrick are in the Nut Bar a picture of Popeye, a panel from his comic strip series, and a panel from the comic strip Krazy Kat can be seen framed on the wall behind them.
When Cyclops is making a knick-knack out of a clam, he names it "Alexander Clam Bell" which is a parody of Alexander Graham Bell with a telephone replica attached. Alexander Graham Bell was the inventor of the telephone.
After SpongeBob hops from David's right leg to his left Dennis says: "You got guts kid!" This could a reference to an old Nickelodeon game show called: "Nickelodeon Guts," in which three competitors would go through a series of obstacle courses, and in the end the host would say, "These kids got guts!"
When SpongeBob and Patrick burp after eating the ice cream, it sounds exactly like the burp of Barney Gumble from FOX's animated TV series The Simpsons.
The scene where Squidward gets hired as the Krusty Krab 2 new manager and SpongeBob thinks that he did is similar and might be a reference to a scene from the beginning of the 2001 Paramount Pictures/Village Roadshow Pictures/VH1 Films movie Zoolander where Hansel gets an award and Derek thinks that he did.
During the scene where Mindy tells SpongeBob "You just gotta believe!," it is a reference to Parappa the Rapper.
King Neptune, who made his first appearance in "Neptune's Spatula," and his daughter, Mindy, who made her debut appearance in this movie, might be a spoof of King Triton and Ariel from The Little Mermaid.
Mr. Krabs says near the end of the movie "I'm going to do something that I should have done 6 days ago." He means 7 because it was the day after when SpongeBob got the 6-day challenge to get the crown.
When King Neptune first sets Mr. Krabs on fire, the clothes on Mr. Krabs completely burns away. However, as soon Mr. Krabs jumps in a bucket of water to put the fire out, his clothes suddenly reappear. He wears it before shooting this shot.
When Patrick and SpongeBob are at Goofy Goober's, Patrick never orders a meal, but he is given one.
It's possible that he pre-ordered it on the phone or came around earlier and told them.
SpongeBob had his shoes on while he put his pants on, but in the scene before that, he was only wearing his socks.
The size of the crown changes through most of the movie. When Plankton is carrying it, he is as big as the tip. When SpongeBob attempts to lift it, it looks gigantic compared to him.
When there's a close-up of the Patty Mobile's pickle-like wheels, they are bumpy. However in the next scene, they are regular wheels instead.
When SpongeBob smears Plankton on the ground, Plankton's smear appears, but after SpongeBob picks up Plankton, the green smear disappears.
When Mindy talks to King Neptune, she has her golden band, however the next scene her golden band disappears.
During the scene where SpongeBob and Patrick are eating lots of the Triple Gooberberry Sunrises, there are the glass bowls the ice cream came in lying around the bench, but no spoons. The spoons have miraculously disappeared.
While King Neptune was screaming, the rest of his hair turns into 3 strings of hair.
Even in Bikini Bottom, kids would not be left alone in a restaurant, that is outside of town, at night.
When Mr. Krabs is frozen, his position in the restaurant changes through most of the movie.
Even from the distance Mindy was, she should have seen Patrick's underwear.
After Patrick tells SpongeBob to be careful while he is fighting Dennis while on Hasselhoff, Dennis's color scheme goes paler for one scene but changes back after SpongeBob looks down.
Before the execution, Karen is not there, but after SpongeBob and Patrick get to the Krusty Krab 2, she is.
When Patrick puts the patty wagon on full throttle, the flag disappears. Although it's possible it fell off because of how fast Patrick was going.
The sign that says that Shell City is only 5 days away says by car, even though the type of vehicle in the ocean are boats.
When Plankton was looking through his binoculars, there were two eyes, with two pupils. This would not be possible, as Plankton has only one eye.
If one were to look closely, and go frame by frame, when SpongeBob is doing his speech near the end of the movie, the first time he says "I'm," his arm becomes somewhat mutated.
This was probably intentional, since this is a technique to utilize motion blur in traditional animation, known as "animation smears."
When King Neptune first takes off his crown, his bald head doesn't shine like all the other times it did.
When SpongeBob and Patrick were eating their Triple Gooberberry Sunrises, pink strawberry (presumably) ice cream was splattered on the waiter, however there was no pink ice cream visible on the sundae.
There was also a few strawberries that got on the waiter, but there was again no strawberries visible on the ice cream.
SpongeBob and Patrick are shown to be able to eat the bananas in their ice cream without peeling them first.
When Mr. Krabs is being interviewed his pants are purple and don't change to blue until the end of the movie.
When King Neptune is fed up with being stalled from the execution, he tells Mindy to go wait outside, then places a lock on the door. After SpongeBob and Patrick arrive, the lock disappears.
When King Neptune first enters the Krusty Krab, the clock above the doors is absent.