Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is the 1990 live-action film based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. The film was followed by three sequels, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze in 1991, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III in 1993, and TMNT in 2007. This film presents the origin story of Splinter and the Turtles, the initial meeting between them, April O'Neil and Casey Jones, and their first confrontation with Shredder and his Foot Clan.
When the NYPD is unable to stop a severe crime wave caused by the Foot Clan, four new vigilantes, Leonardo, Michaelangelo, Donatello and Raphael, come forth to save the city. Under the leadership of Splinter and together with their new-found allies April O'Neil and Casey Jones, they fight back and take the battle to Shredder.
The film kept very close to the dark feel of the original comics with several elements also taken from the animated series that was airing at the time, such as April being a news reporter, and the turtles having different-colored masks, as opposed to the uniform red masks of the comic. The film received positive reviews, was the highest-grossing independent film of all time when it was released, was a huge hit at the box office, and became the fifth highest grossing film worldwide of 1990 and the most successful TMNT film.
As an unsolved crimewave rises in New York City, April O'Neil (Judith Hoag) for Channel 3 Eyewitness News covers the reports and rumors of a mysterious 'Foot Clan' which seems to be the organization that is plaguing the city. Much to the ire of Chief of Police Chief Sterns (Raymond Serra) who refuses to believe that they exist. April is attacked in an alley by a group of punks who are quickly taken down when a weapon flies through the air, knocking out the street light. While police are investigating the attack, April finds the sai responsible for knocking out the street light and takes it. One of the fighters, from the cover of the sewers watches this and curses himself for his bad luck.
While celebrating, the four mutated teenage turtles Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo, and Raphael reunite with their master Splinter to recount their first true battle. In a huff, Raphael leaves to go see a movie. After Raph leaves the theater, he chases muggers into the park and encounters Casey Jones (Elias Koteas), a hockey masked vigilante whose brutal attacks on the muggers forces the turtle to stand up for them. After a brief scuffle, Casey escapes Raph leaving him in a humiliating defeat further fueling his anger. He later comes to April's defense after her belief in the Foot Clan draws a few members out who attack her, knocking her out. Raph retrieves his sai and fights them off, unaware that he leads one of them back to their sewer Den. April revives and after being calmed down is told the story of Splinter and the turtles' origins. After some time there, the turtles lead to her home at 11th and Bleaker Street, her apartment home built on top of her family Antique Store. They spend some time over frozen pizzas telling jokes and stories before they decide they have to head back. Upon their return, the turtles find that their home had been utterly destroyed and their master taken.
With nowhere else to go, the four return to April's apartment and spend the night. Meanwhile, Sterns discovers that April's boss Charles Pennington's (Jay Patterson) son Danny (Michael Turney) is in custody, arrested for trying to steal a car stereo, and uses it as leverage to talk to Pennington about other matters. The following morning, Charles warns April not to press any buttons with Sterns, and Danny becomes suspicious when he thinks he sees the turtles in the apartment. Enroute to his school, Charles and Danny have an argument and Danny runs away, fleeing to a hideout outside of town where many delinquents and punks have gathered over skateboard ramps, arcade games and other personal pleasures. They are joined into a meeting with The Shredder a man in a black cloak and metal mask who urges them to find the turtles. Danny stands out and relinquishes the location he thinks he saw the turtles.
April deliberately disobeys Charles' orders and continues to insult Sterns' competency for the job and ignorance to the fact that the Foot Clan exists. After returning home, April gives the turtles a tour of the shop while Raph goes and practices on the roof. He is spotted by Casey, but only seconds before he is attacked by several Foot Clan members. Brutally beaten, Raph makes a re-entrance to the house through the skylight window and the turtles, joined by Casey fight off many members of the footclan. The building is destroyed, and the group escapes, forcing Tatsu and the Foot to leave. They go to a farm that belongs to April's family, and Casey sparks anger with her when he says he heard Charles' message as they got out of the house that she had been fired for her comments that day. Raph soon recovers from his coma, and the four of them practice until it is time for them to return to New York and find Splinter and reunite their family. Danny meets Splinter and is for the first time in turmoil about his decision to leave his family. Leonardo makes meditative contact with Splinter and for the first time is sure that he is alive. After the four of them each encounter him in a shared vision, they decide to return.
Danny had been living for a few days in the Den and makes formal introductions with the Turtles and Casey. But that night he decides to return to Shredder's hideout and speak with Splinter. Splinter tells him the story of his master Hamato Yoshi being killed by another ninja named Oroku Saki, Danny realizes that the Shredder is Oroku Saki. He overhears Shredder telling Tatsu to have Splinter killed. Danny runs into Casey who followed him and the pair face off against Tatsu. After Casey defeats the ninja master, the three of them express the importance of family before leaving.
Meanwhile the Foot, who had set up an attack against the Turtles at their Den were surprised when they had been ambushed the fight escalates up into the streets above and eventually up on a rooftop where the Turtles finally face off against Shredder. Shredder easily out maneuvers the four of them in combat, though Leonardo eventually wounds him. He later takes Leonardo hostage in a threat to have the Turtles throw their weapons away. As he is about to kill them anyway, Splinter appears and challenges Saki to a fight. Shredder remembers the old rat who he injured years prior and charges him with a lance. Using a nunchaku that the he found, Splinter dangles Shredder precariously over the roof's ledge, in a final attempt to kill Splinter, the rat's grip on the lance is released and the ninja falls into the back of a garbage truck. Casey "accidentally" throws the switch, crushing him in a compactor. Danny pays April back a $20 bill that he had stolen from her earlier and reunites with his father and insists that he be called "Dan" from then on. Charles then pleads April to cover the story offering her a raise and a corner office without breaking a sweat to her demands. Casey approaches her trying to flatter her before she gets ready for her interview, she tells him to just "shut up and kiss me, I got a report to do" Casey gladly complies. Upstairs, the turtles reunite with their father figure and while trying to come up with a proper word to cheer to, he suggests the phrase "Cowabunga," a catch phrase from their '80s animated series, concluding with the phrase "I made a funny!" and laughing as the credits roll.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze (1991)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze is a 1991 action / family film. It is the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film, being the sequel to the 1990 film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The Secret of the Ooze was then followed by a third film in 1993, and a fourth film (titled simply TMNT) in 2007. The film is commonly abbreviated as TMNT II. This movie is distributed by: New Line Cinema. Outside the United States, it is internationally distributed by 20th Century Fox.
The film follows the adventures of the four Turtles: Leonardo, Donatello, Michaelangelo and Raphael. Roughly resuming from the events of the last film, the villain, Shredder, returns to take back command of the Foot Clan, and work towards getting revenge on the Turtles. When he learns the secret behind the Turtles's mutation, he becomes more dangerous than ever. The film sheds some light on the origins of Splinter and the Turtles, introduces two new villains: Tokka and Rahzar. Unlike the first film, this one rarely showed the use of the Turtles' weapons. They instead fight bare-fisted for much of the film as part of an attempt to tone down the violence of the previous movie.
The film was released in March 1991, and received mixed reviews from critics. It departed from a lot of the darker feelings of the 1990 film, and in contrast was more light-hearted than its predecessor. The film was still very popular, and it became the 13th highest grossing film worldwide in the year of its release.
At the beginning of the film, Turtles have been forced to live with their friend the news reporter April O'Neil because the Foot Clan know the whereabouts of their lair in the sewers. While the Turtles are looking for a new home, they encounter a pizza delivery boy named Keno, who is trying to fight off a band of robbers by means of his skill as a martial artist, whereupon the Turtles intervene on his behalf. Viewers later see that the Foot Clan, no longer as large as it was in the first film, have retreated to a large junkyard, where Master Tatsu, Shredder's second in command, attempts to take control of the gang, but is challenged by Shredder himself. Shredder was thought to be dead, as a result of falling from a rooftop into a garbage truck's trash compactor after a short battle with Splinter at the end of the first film. He now appears physically deformed and obsessed with obtaining revenge, to achieve which he sends a Foot member to pose as an intern at the news network and trail April.
April is shown making a report on the efforts of an industrial organization known as Techno Global Research Industries (TGRI for short) to neutralize pollutants that have resulted from their experiments. Soon after her interview of him, chief scientist Professor Jordan Perry discovers that toxic waste produced by the company has caused mutation in nearby dandelion plants, producing exponential growth. The Foot member posing as an intern informs Shredder of this, whereupon Shredder proceeds to dispatch the Foot Clan to obtain some of the waste. Splinter, seeing the report on television, shows the Turtles and April the canister of "ooze" that had caused himself and the Turtles to mutate into their present forms, revealing that it was made by the TGRI and evidently contained the same substance that triggered the overgrowth of the afore-mentioned dandelions. The Turtles infiltrate the TGRI offices to seize a sample of the ooze, only to encounter Tatsu and the Foot. Despite the Turtles' efforts to stop them, Tatsu and the Foot escape, taking the last canister of ooze and Professor Jordan Perry with them. Shredder later instructs Perry to use the ooze to transform a snapping turtle and a wolf into monsters, creating the characters Tokka and Rahzar. Perry does this, but because Perry altered the ooze before giving it to Shredder, it does not increase the intelligence of the mutants, making them infantile in intellect. As a result, when Shredder tells them to call him "Master", they misinterpret this and call him "Mama" instead, enraging him. He then orders Tatsu to kill them; however, when he sees a demonstration of their immense strength, he decides to use them as weapons. He releases them into city streets, where they amuse themselves by causing damage and wreaking havoc.
Raphael goes alone to pursue the Foot while the other three Turtles find a new lair in an abandoned subway station. With the assistance of Keno, the Foot headquarters located on Lairdman Island (home to the origin of the Ooze) off the coast of New York City is infiltrated, but Raphael is eventually captured by Shredder. Keno is able to inform the others, who go to save Raphael. After rescuing Raphael and Professor Perry, being themselves aided by Splinter, the Turtles are vanquished in battle by Tokka and Rahzar. Later, Professor Perry explains that the ooze was created as the result of discarded chemicals accidentally combining after being exposed to radiation in a lab accident, sending Donatello into a brief funk before Splinter assures him that he cannot judge his life on how it began, but only on what it is. Learning that Shredder intends to release Tokka and Rahzar into populated areas unless the Turtles confront them, Professor Perry and the Turtles attempt to develop an antidote to the ooze's effects. After creating a successful formula, they trick their enemies into ingesting it by hiding it in doughnuts and appealing to Tokka and Rahzar's hunger. Tokka and Rahzar eat some, but soon discover the antidote and become enraged.
The Turtles find themselves confronting the Shredder's mutants at a nightclub, in full view of every guest and performer. To appease the initial panic, the club's singer Vanilla Ice improvises a rap song whose refrain is "Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!", which is then sung as background music to the fights taking place in the club. Acting on Perry's advice, the Turtles use fire extinguishers to stimulate a swift activation of the antidote by spraying carbon dioxide into their enemies' throats, accelerating the anti-mutagenic process. The mutation is reversed, reducing the two monsters to their natural forms. The Shredder then arrives at the club and menaces all who are present. To defeat him, the Turtles use a sound amplifier to magnify a single noise produced by a musical instrument, resulting in a powerful sound-wave that throws the Shredder out of the club and into the area among the docks below.
Here, Shredder uses a vial of ooze to become a superior form of himself, extemporaneously called Super-Shredder. While fighting underneath a pier, the Super-Shredder, desperate to destroy the Turtles and heedless of all else- his simple speech pattern of various grunts suggests that his intellect has been reduced as well-, wrecks the structure, bringing it down on himself. The Turtles escape by utilizing their amphibious nature. Then, they note Shredder's hand emerges from the wreckage, but moments later falls down, indicating that he has died.
The Turtles return to their new lair, where Splinter asks whether they were seen. They deny it (insisting that they practice "the art of invisiblity"), until Splinter displays a newspaper having a front-page picture of them, taken at the nightclub where they fought Tokka and Rahzar (it is not explained how the newspaper's publishers managed to print the story between the time of the fight and the Turtles' arrival home, nor how Splinter managed to get a copy). Splinter advises them to practice harder, then orders them to perform ten flips each, reminding them with the line "Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!". The screen freezes as they begin the first flip, whereupon Splinter is heard shouting "I made another funny! Ha ha ha ha!", implying that either he made up the newspaper story, or that the "funny" that Splinter made was merely stating the phrase "Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!".
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III (1993)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III is a 1993 live-action film, the second and final sequel of the 1990 live-action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film. It was produced by Clearwater Holdings Ltd. and Golden Harvest. This was the last Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film released by New Line Cinema and released on VHS along with Columbia Tristar. Outside the United States, it was internationally distributed by 20th Century Fox. Unlike the previous films, the Jim Henson's Creature Shop did not provide the advanced animatronics, which garnered criticism from fans of the previous movies.
Conspicuous by his absence in this entire movie is The Shredder (having being crushed to death in the previous movie), the arch nemesis of the Turtles in all previous installments (both animated and live action). Shredder is never seen, or even mentioned (unlike in TMNT). Common criticism include the cartoon-like feel of the film, the unrealistic plot, the lack of combat, the low quality of the Turtles' costumes and Splinter's puppetry.
Japan 1603, a masked man is seen fighting four samurai on horseback. The samurai eventually defeat the masked man by knocking his katana sword out of his hand and capture him. As the samurai ride off with the man he yells "Mitsu!" just as a mysterious woman emerges from the underbrush. As the samurai ride off with the man one of them takes his sword which had gotten jabbed in a tree.
Fast forward to present day Manhattan (1993). As the samurai on horse back takes the sword the scene switches to a speeding subway train. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are dancing to ZZ Top and each shows his fighting style, in the abandoned subway station which they have made their home. As the dance ends, Raphael throws a sai into the speaker, frustrated that no one appreciates the Turtles or sees what they do. He is contradicted by the arrival of April O'Neil, who has been shopping at a flea market in preparation for her upcoming vacation and brings her friends gifts to cheer them up. Michelangelo is given a colorful lampshade, Donatello is given an old radio, Leonardo is given a book on historical swords and Raphael is to receive a new fedora hat. However, having stormed off earlier, he never formally receives it.
For Splinter, April brings an ancient Japanese scepter. This is possibly a reference to the "Sacred Sands of Time Scepter" featured in the original Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic series and the crossover story featuring Dave Sim's Cerebus character.
In feudal Japan, the man who was taken, Kenshin, is reproached for committing disgrace by his father, Daimyo Norinaga. Angry at the latter, Kenshin leaves his father's presence and drives priests out of a temple. There, he finds the same scepter and reads the inscription on its handle: "Open Wide the Gates of Time". Before Kenshin leaves, a British weapons-trader called Walker is introduced, along with his thug Niles.
In the twentieth century, April is looking at the scepter when it begins to emit light and a small device inside its lamp-like crown begins to spin. She is then sent to Kenshin's time and place, and he to hers, exchanging clothes. Upon arrival, April is captured by the Daimyo's soldiers. Lord Norinaga, blaming her for Kenshin's disappearance, imprisons her.
The Turtles become friends with Kenshin and decide to travel back in time to retrieve April. They invite Casey Jones to watch over Splinter, then embark, warned by Donatello's calculation that they have only 60 hours wherein to complete the rescue before the scepter ceases to enable time travel due to the time-space continuum being out of sync. Having been sent to Japan in exchange for Daimyo Norinaga's Honor Guards, the Turtles arrive mounted on horses in the midst of a battle. Michelangelo, who is sitting backward on his horse, is separated from his brothers and captured by outlaws. The scepter goes with him and is ultimately seized by an unseen character. The other Turtles search for April. When they reach Norinaga's fortress, presumably by infiltrating his army, they are quickly mistaken for Honor Guards, though they escape from the prospect of facing the Daimyo. They then follow Walker's men to the prison and discover April.
There, the Turtles drive out Walker's assistants, intimidate the jailer, and free April. They leave through a garbage-disposal chute. Escaping behind them is an Englishman called Whit, who is said to have rebelled against Walker, and who bears a strong physical resemblance to Casey (both parts are played by Elias Koteas).
In 20th-century New York, Kenshin is becoming impatient and worried. To placate them, Casey introduces him, and the Honor Guards, to ice hockey. However, this plan comically goes awry when the Guards believe that hockey consists of players beating one another.
An attack on the Turtles, who were again mistaken for the Honor Guards, leads them to Mitsu, leader of the rebellion against Lord Norinaga. Mitsu is a young, beautiful, courageous, and determined woman who intends first to overthrow the Daimyo and later to marry Kenshin so as to prevent another war. It is she who has imprisoned Michelangelo. Mitsu's village is under attack by Walker and his men, who are searching for the scepter; therefore the Turtles rush to intervene. Michelangelo is released by two of Walker's men, who think to earn a reward by restoring one of the Honor Guards confirmed as absent. Having seen his face and heard him speak, they plant the rumor among their partners that a demon is in the vicinity. When confronted by Michelangelo, the other Turtles, and Mitsu's people, Walker flees. Michelangelo saves a boy named Yoshi from a fire, whereupon Leonardo revives the nearly dead child by means of CPR, for which the grateful villagers allow them to stay. Anguished by the loss of the scepter, the Turtles commission a local blacksmith to make a new one.
Walker uses the presence of the Turtles as an excuse to raise the price of guns sold by him to the Daimyo, arguing that the threat posed by demons is greater than the threat posed only by men. Norinaga, during the same conversation, reveals a legend stating that four kappa resembling the Turtles, had vanquished his ancestors, and suggests that they have returned to disgrace him. Although he initially refuses to pay more for the guns than the price originally set, he agrees later. Walker shows himself, in these interactions, to be greedy, manipulative, and without compassion.
Michelangelo tries to teach the village cooks to make pizza, but produces an inedible result. In a later scene, it is shown that he is apparently attracted emotionally to Mitsu; he learns that she wishes to marry Kenshin and reassures her that Kenshin will return when the Turtles have departed. Raphael, meanwhile, fulfills his potential patience and gentleness through the child Yoshi, whose name links him through an unclear means to Splinter's mentor. He becomes very fond of this child and eventually considers him a younger brother.
A new scepter is completed, only to be broken by Michelangelo and Raphael during an argument over whether or not to stay. Mitsu then informs them that Lord Norinaga has guns and will attack the next day. Yoshi, fearing Raphael's death, gives him the original scepter, which he (having apparently been its unseen captor earlier in the film) had hidden under the house where he lives. They are overjoyed to see it, but resent Mitsu for concealing it in order to force them to fight in the war. Mitsu is then kidnapped by Whit, who takes Mitsu and the scepter to Walker.
The Turtles set out to rescue Mitsu. In the process, they learn of the legend that has caused the Daimyo to fear them, regain confidence in themselves, and free many of those imprisoned, leading to a massive battle in the courtyard of Norinaga's palace between the rebels and the daimyo's army. Leonardo defeats Lord Norinaga in a sword duel, comically finishing him by cutting his hair (a disgrace to his status as a samurai), and then trapping him inside of a bell.
Walker, at the end of the battle captures April and threatens to kill her. His soldiers then take control of the battlefield, armed with guns. He orders the Turtles to be shot, whereupon Leonardo bluffs by drawing upon the belief (held insistently by Walker's superstitious men) that he and his brothers are demons, saying that any bullets shot at them will ricochet and kill their senders. Baited by Leonardo to take the shot himself, Walker shoots at them with a cannon, but misses when Leonardo instinctively pulls his head into his shell. April and Whit, also targeted by the cannon (Whit having spoken against Walker's order), duck their own heads to dodge the shot. The cannonball collides with the bell, freeing the shocked but largely unscathed Daimyo.
Walker's soldiers are routed and he himself runs away. He obtains the scepter and a cage containing pet birds from his room, then climbs over the roof of the palace to a high point overlooking the ocean. He is there cornered by the Turtles. To distract them while escaping himself, Walker throws the scepter overhead and begins climbing down a scaffold. The Turtles form a chain with their bodies, holding onto a wall or fence at one end and catching the scepter at the other. Walker, realizing that he has forgotten his birds again, returns to retrieve them, whereupon Whit, realizing that his name is "lower than scum" in the eyes of the desirable April, uses a catapult to kill Walker by knocking him to his death in the ocean.
The Turtles then debate whether or not to go home, wishing to remain on grounds that they are appreciated and respected in feudal Japan, unlike 20th-century New York City where they must hide underground to avoid being targets of human xenophobia. Mitsu urges them to go, so that she may have Kenshin return to her, and makes a parting well-wish to Michelangelo, of whose soft spot for her she is aware and by which she is flattered. The scepter then activates, making their decision urgent. In New York City of the late twentieth century, Kenshin has activated it in his impatience to go home. Splinter counsels him not to abandon the Honor Guards, on the grounds that such an act would be cowardly. Casey gathers the Honor Guards, who have become infatuated with the trappings of their host society, and organizes their return to feudal Japan.
The Turtles ultimately decide to go home, based on the argument that their presence interferes negatively with the lives of the people of feudal Japan. Raphael bids Yoshi an affectionate farewell. As a result of his procrastination, Michelangelo fails to join April and his brothers. When they have returned to their native time, the Honor Guard who had replaced Michelangelo runs away, carrying the scepter. As he exits the Turtles' den, the scepter activates, exchanging him for Michelangelo. Simultaneously, its powers of time travel (symbolized by the rotating device at its head) are destroyed. In Japan, Norinaga is taken prisoner and brought before Mitsu and Kenshin. He is surprised to see them both together, and more surprised to see his Honor Guard walk through the corridor, half naked and talking incoherently about anachronisms. When he has gone, having spoken no word but clearly shown his submission, Kenshin seizes Mitsu in imitation of a poster he had seen in the Turtles' home and kisses her on the lips. Norinaga, presumably is reconciled with his son.
Michelangelo, perhaps thinking on the preceding scene, is depressed until Splinter puts the afore-mentioned lampshade on his (Splinter's) head as a joke, whereupon both laugh. The film ends with another dance sequence by the Turtles.
TMNT (also known as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 4) is a 2007 film based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. The film sees the Turtles grow apart after their defeat of The Shredder. Meanwhile, strange things are happening in New York City. An army of ancient creatures threatens to take over the world and the Turtles must unite again to save it.
It is the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film made with Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI) by Imagi Animation Studios. The previous films in the series were all live-action. It is the first film in the franchise in 14 years. Chronologically, the film takes place after the original films. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was released on March 23, 2007 in a number of Eastern European and Asian countries, on March 23, 2007, in the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States, and April 5, 2007 in Australia as well as subsequently in numerous other countries. It was the #1 film in the U.S. on its opening weekend, bringing in $25.45 million. It made its television debut on Cartoon Network on November 1, 2009.
The film features the four Turtles (Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, and Michelangelo) as well as Casey Jones and April O'Neil. The main villains are Max Winters, the Stone Generals, Karai, and the Foot Clan. Voices are provided by Chris Evans, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Patrick Stewart, and Zhang Ziyi. It is also the last film starring Mako.
The film opens 3,000 years before the early twenty-first century, during which time a powerful warlord named Yaotl and his four generals discover a portal opening onto a parallel universe wherein is said to be a great power. Upon opening the portal, the warlord is exposed to this power and made immortal by the contact, but his four generals are turned to stone and his army obliterated. The portal additionally releases 13 immortal monsters that wreak havoc upon the world.
In the twenty-first century, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have grown apart. After their defeat of the Shredder, Master Splinter has sent Leonardo away to Central America for training. The rest of the Turtles have settled into lives in New York:
April O'Neil, seemingly expanded from her antique store "2nd Time Around", now operates a company that locates rare relics and acquires them for collectors with the help of her roommate and boyfriend Casey Jones.
- Donatello works as an IT specialist and has become the de facto leader
- Michelangelo works as a clown called "Cowabunga Carl" for birthday parties, and
- Raphael continues fighting crime at night while disguised as the vigilante "Nightwatcher".
While on a business trip in Central America, April meets Leonardo, whom she advises to return to New York, but he is hesitant to do so out of fear that he has not completed his training. April then tells him how the other Turtles have drifted apart and leaves Leo to ponder his next move. April returns to New York with a stone statue for her client Max Winters, the wealthy CEO of a financial empire. Leo stows away on board a plane and returns shortly afterwards. April and Casey deliver the statue to Winters at his corporate office, after they leave he brings all four statues out and reanimates them, revealing that the statues are the four Generals of the myth, and Winters the warlord made immortal. Winters is then visited by Karai and the Foot Clan, whom he hires to scour the city searching for the 13 beasts, who will be drawn to New York by the reopening of the portal, scheduled to happen in days.
Leo returns to the sewer home of the Turtles, where he faces Splinter. Splinter, desiring him to reunite his brothers as a family, forbids the Turtles from fighting until they are cohesive team again. While training, the Turtles encounter one of the thirteen beasts battling with the Foot Clan. Seeing the Foot losing the battle, the Turtles defy Leo and Splinter's orders and engage the beast as well. The beast easily defeats the Turtles; but before it can kill them the four Stone Generals arrive and capture the beast, spiriting it away in a disguised garbage truck. Leo and Raph quarrel, whereinafter Raph leaves to go hunting alone. Later, as Nightwatcher, Raph encounters Casey, who reveals his knowledge of Raph's double identity and joins him in hunting criminals. Together they encounter the Stone Generals again, and are pursued by one until the police interrupt the fight. Raph is knocked unconscious by a dart fired by the Generals, whereupon Casey takes him to his apartment and calls the other Turtles to come and help. While examining Raph, they learn the identities of Winters and his Generals from April. After being revived, Raph leaves them, wishing to fight alone.
Leo, Donny, and Mikey return to their sewer home to plan their next move, where Donny discovers the reopening of the portal will be directly over Winters' Tower. Splinter calls Leo aside and tells him that his team is not complete, and that he knows what he must do. Wishing to preserve their own immortality, which lasts as long as they are made of stone, the Generals plot to betray Winters so as to prevent him restoring their humanity. While looking for Raph, Leo encounters Nightwatcher, whom he challenges. Leo initially gets the upper hand, knocking Nightwatcher's helmet off and revealing Raph, who, being resentful of Leo's self-righteous authority and feeling like his brother abandoned him when he left, duels with him. Raph ultimately wins when Leo's swords are broken by Raph. Raph, horrified by his own rage towards his brother, flees the scene. The Stone Generals then seize Leo, intending to substitute him for the thirteenth missing beast.
Raph returns to Master Splinter and reveals the fight, deciding to make amends by recapturing Leo. Thereafter Splinter and the Turtles, accompanied by Casey and April, travel to Winters' Tower and confront him. Here, the Generals' desire to remain immortal and Winters' desire to send the beasts to their native world are both revealed. Having refused to betray Winters in exchange for immortality, April, Casey, and the Foot Clan search for the thirteenth beast while the Turtles and Splinter fight off the Generals and numerous other monsters emerging from the now open portal. After a long battle and a death-defying search, the Generals are destroyed and the beasts returned to their native world. Winters, now mortal, honors the Turtles and Splinter, thanks them for the fulfillment of his wish, and disintegrates before their eyes.
As the Turtles regroup, Karai warns them to enjoy their victory while it lasts, on grounds that they will soon contend with a familiar foe (implying the Shredder's return and a future sequel). She and her followers then depart. In the later evening, Winters' helmet, Raphael's "Nightwatcher" helmet, and Michelangelo's clown costume are added to a collection of trophies kept by Splinter which includes Shredder's helmet, the broken canister formerly containing the mutagenic "ooze" which gave the Turtles and Splinter their present forms, and the Golden Time Scepter of the previous films. An epilogue narrated by Raph's voice then shows the Turtles unitedly patrolling New York City, and concludes the film with the much-repeated catchphrase "Man, I love being a turtle!".