Feeling blue is a happy feeling in Smurfland, a hidden village in an enchanted forest, where small blue creatures live. Most people think Smurfs are made-up or only alive in the imagination of children, but they work and live there, hiding from the evil wizard Gargamel (Hank Azaria). He wants to catch them all and squeeze their “essence” out, (which would kill them) and use it to become the most powerful, invincible wizard in the world. His cat Azrael helps him in his quest.
Smurfland is filled with small houses that look like mushrooms, and everyone sings a happy song and works. They each have a name that matches their personality or identity: Jokey Smurf, Tailor Smurf, Baker Smurf, Artist Smurf, Vanity Smurf, and Papa Smurf (Jonathan Winters), the leader of the Smurfs. The Smurfs are rehearsing their parts for the Blue Moon celebration. Clumsy Smurf (Anton Yelchin) has been banned from attending as he causes all sorts of mishaps and “fractures”. He goes to visit Papa Smurf instead, and wants to make some root compresses to help the Smurfs he inadvertently injured. Papa Smurf forbids it, as the roots are too close to Gargamel’s castle. Clumsy goes anyway, and Gargamel sees him. Clumsy runs back to the village, and Gargamel follows him. He yells a warning, and Gargamel rushes in, crushing houses in the village while chasing the Smurfs. He especially wants to catch Papa Smurf, who is a wizard himself. Clumsy runs into the forest, leading other Smurfs behind him, and misreads a sign that actually says “DO NOT go this way” and of course goes that way. The Smurfs end up at the edge of a cliff with a waterfall. The blue moon shines through and a swirling portal opens in the waterfall that sucks the 6 Smurfs towards it. They fight to stay on the cliff, but Gargamel is there. Papa Smurf lets go and they go into the vortex and disappear.
The Smurfs fall out of the vortex and land in a stream with a small waterfall; as they climb up to see where they are, they see huge skyscrapers and are in New York City’s Central Park. Gutsy Smurf (Alan Cumming) says with his Scottish-brogue: “We are up Smurf creek without a paddle”. Before they can figure out what to do, Gargamel and Azrael also fall out of the vortex, having followed the Smurfs. The Smurfs run towards the boathouse, where a large event is being held. Patrick (Neil Patrick Harris) is an ad executive with a cosmetics company, owned by Odile (Sofia Vergara). Henri (Tim Gunn) is also an exec, and both he and Odile promote Patrick to VP of marketing, provided he can come up with a campaign that will wow Odile, in 2 days, or else he is fired.
Clumsy Smurf gets trapped in Patrick’s box of materials, and ends up in a taxi with Patrick on the way home. The remaining Smurfs hitch a ride atop a cab and follow. They see Patrick through a window, and climb up to his balcony. Meanwhile, Clumsy is trying to open the box. He escapes, only to land on the dog’s nose. Frantic, he runs, with the dog in chase. The other Smurfs break in and end up in Patrick’s office, and he freaks out, trying to swat at them. Grace (Jayma Mays), Patrick’s pregnant wife, catches Clumsy and cuddles him. She brings him out to show Patrick and tells him to stopthey are friendly. They Smurfs are reunited: Clumsy, Gutsy, Papa, Brainy (Fred Armisen), Grouchy (George Lopez), and Smurfette (Katy Perry), the only female Smurf. They spend the night with Patrick and Grace.
Meanwhile, Gargamel needs a bit of a Smurf to make some essence, so he can cast a spell and catch them all. He brainstorms ideas to get some, and Azrael coughs up a hairball, which has some of Smurfette’s blonde hair in it. Gargamel takes it and spies Belvedere Castle in Central Park, and breaks in, to use it as his lair. He brews one drop of essence with her hair, and puts it in his ring.
In the morning, the Smurfs sing a happy song and help with breakfast. They explain about the portal and how they need to find out when the next blue moon will be, so they can return to their village. Patrick Googles the Smurfs, and finds out that they are “mythical” creatures, but Grace tells him that they seem pretty real to her. He finds out that a blue moon happens about twice a month. Papa Smurf needs to make a spell when the stars are in perfect alignment, to envoke the blue moon and reopen the portal to return to Smurfland. Papa Smurf needs a “star gazer”, but Patrick doesn’t have one. Grace leaves for a doctor’s appointment. Since Patrick predicts trends at work, they figure his office might have a star gazer. They look out the window and see him getting in a cab; they jump off the balcony (except ClumsyPapa asks him to stay behind, given his proclivity to cause havoc) and use their Smurf hats as parachutes, and land atop his cab, riding it unbeknownst to him.
Patrick exits the cab, and the Smurfs call to himhe is shocked to see them. He hides them in his jacket and smuggles them into his office. He assures them he doesn’t have a “star gazer”, and that he really needs to get to work. The Smurfs offer tips and ideas: Chew with your mouth closed, Grab life by the grapes, and Smurfette says, “I kissed a Smurf and I liked it”. Papa tells him that the right message always comes from the heart.
Gargamel found the Smurfs and goes in the building; Odile is demonstrating a new cosmetic cream that will” transform” aging skin years youngerGargamel sees no difference and uses the essence and zaps the lady: instantly she transforms into a beautiful, much younger woman. Odile and Henri both want his secret-they offer him fame, wealth and power if he will share the secret with them.
Patrick can’t get any work done; the Smurfs are making a mess in his office, and so he calls Grace and begs her to come get them. She sneaks them out in a gift bag, but when Papa Smurf sees an ad for a telescope, aka “star gazer” in the toy store window, the Smurfs jump out, with Grace chasing behind them. She calls Patrick and tells him that the Smurfs need his help, that SHE needs his help, and he comes right away. Inside the store, Smurfette is amazed to see doll dressesshe realizes that she could have more than just ONE DRESS, and is in awe. Brainy finds the star gazer and he and Papa climb up the shelf to get it. Gargamel sees them, and tries to catch them. He can’t but has an idea when he sees a gardener outside: he steals his leaf blower, and changes the setting to “suck” and tries to suck up the Smurfs. He gets Grouchy, and before he can get anymore, Patrick distracts him, changes the setting to “blow” and the Smurf is thrown out. Patrick grabs the Smurfs and the telescope, and gets away. Gargamel is arrested and tazed by the cops.
At home, Papa Smurf is roof-top, using the star gazer, trying to see if the stars are aligned for the blue moon. Inside, the rest of the Smurfs get restless waiting, so Patrick suggests they play “Rockband”. The Smurfs and Patrick jam out to “Walk this Way” and have fun together. Smurfette comes out in a new dress, and stands on the vent. It blows her dress up, just like vintage Marilyn Monroe. Patrick finishes his billboard design for Odile: he did a traditional photo of a model. But, he toys with the idea and image of a blue moon, and wants to use it. He decides to play it safe and emails Odile the traditional ad. Later, he gets an email from Odileshe approved the ad and Patrick is excited. He gets the art attached to the order and is about to send it to the printer, when Clumsy trips and falls on the keyboard. Not realizing that Clumsy inadvertently clicked on the other ad with the blue moon, Patrick send it for immediate printing to appear on digital and print boards first thing in the morning.
Patrick brings coffee up to Papa on the roof and asks if Smurfs drink coffeePapa replies, “Is a Smurf’s butt blue?” Papa tells him the stars aren’t in alignment tonight and they have to stay another day. Patrick asks him about being a father, and Papa tells him that he will be a good father when his baby is born. He reminds him that the best decisions come from the heart, and not the head.
Gargamel is in the yard of the jail, and catches a moth. He asks the moth to bring back eagles to fly him out of the jail…but the moth returns with a swarm of disgusting flies. They swarm around Gargamel and lift him over the wall to freedom.
Next morning, Patrick and Grace wake up to an apartment that has been cleaned, reorganized and is full of beautiful plants. The Smurfs explain that “Smurfs have a blue thumb”. Papa tells them all that the blue moon is tonighthe needs a book of spells. The only place that might have one is an old book store, so they plan to go there and look. Smurfette tells them they already have a blue moon and points out the window: the electronic billboard screen is shimmering a blue moon ad for Odile’s company. Patrick freaks outit is the wrong ad and he thinks Odile will fire him. He gets mad at the Smurfs, and runs out, trying to fix it. Grace tells him to appreciate this wonderful thing, the Smurfs, before he misses it.
Gargamel goes back to Belvedere Castle to try to eke out another drop of essence to catch the Smurfs.
Patrick sees the blue moon ads everywhere, and cannot get them taken down. He finds an envelope in his pocket, and opens it: it is from Grace, a photo of the first ultrasound. He smiles as he sees his baby and thinks.
The Smurfs take the subway to the bookstore. It is closed so they sneak in through the mail slot. After a lot of searching, they find the old book about Smurfs, and Papa decodes it and has the much-needed spell for the blue moon. Gargamel has found them, and breaks in. The Smurfs run, and Papa realizes that he will catch them. He sends the other Smurfs on, making them promise to return to Smurfland, no matter what. He stays behind to buy time and battle Gargamel.
The Smurfs hop on the back of pigeons to fly away and they escape Gargamel. At home with Patrick, an angry Odile calls and threatens to fire him as she has seen the blue moon ads. He explains that he sent the wrong ad, but he WANTED to send the blue moon ad as it was a better ad, the ad he should have sent. He also tells her that the blue moon represents the few moments we all get in our lives that are truly magical. She says she will decide later if he is fired.
The Smurfs decide to go rescue Papa Smurf from Gargamel at Belvedere Castle, and Grace and Patrick are in. They all go, armed with various household items as weapons. They also have helium balloons and a remote-controlled plane. Gutsy Smurf says, “No Smurf left behind”. Brainy goes to the waterfall in the park to say Papa’s spell for the blue moon, and it works! Odile and the rest of the guests at her big party see the blue moon and think she somehow did it for her ad. She calls Patrick and tells him it is perfect and he isn’t fired. The rest of the Smurfs start to battle Gargamel. He laughs, and comes out of the castle, leaving Papa Smurf trapped to a device to extract his essence. Brainy comes up; he has gone through the portal and has brought back ALL the Smurfs to fight. They begin the attack, launching balls, eggs, and an apple spiked with needles at Gargamel. The Smurf on the balloons drops a bowling ball on Gargamel. He uses his wand with the essence and zaps the sky: a blue lightening bolt starts a cyclone that sucks up Smurfs. Patrick jumps up and saves a Smurf, and Gutsy flies in on the remote-controlled plane and grabs the wand. It drops…falls…and Clumsy runs for it. Everyone mutters to themselves that life is over, but Clumsy catches the wand and saves the day. He zaps Gargamel, and it flings him across the park, into a pile of garbage. He stands up, complaining, and is immediately hit by a bus.
They ll cheer for Clumsy and he loves being called a “hero”. They all bid farewell to Grace and Patrick and go back to the park and into the portal. Papa tells Patrick that he will be a great Papa someday.
PS: during the credits, we see photos of Grace, Patrick and their new baby boy in the hospital. They name him “Blue”. We also see photos of Smurfland, and they are rebuilding the houses as skyscrapers, a la NYC style. They have even added a Statue of Liberty, with Smurfette as the model for it. Gargamel is stuck sleeping on the street in NYC with Azrael.
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