Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ticket Stub Review:A Christmas Carol

There have been about a million tv/movie versions of this old classic by Charles Dickens. It's timeless story of helping your fellow man and being kind to one another rings as true today as it did in Dickens time. Many people have their favorite version, the Alistar Sims version being possibly the most popular one of all. He just looks like a Scrooge doesn't he?  Disney has come out with their own version, in fact a third version, all updated for the kiddies and in 3D no less. Is it worth hauling your kids out? Maybe.

With so many retelling's of the same story, how it is presented and told become much more important each time. This version fails to keep anyone interested though. It comes off as bland, a walkthrough. It's short which will leave you wondering what happened.It just doesn't keep you intrested even with the fancy images.Perhaps that's because Jim Carry does almost all the main characters? From Scrooge who is actually rendered well to the three ghosts no one comes off as worth your time. Even Tim isn't even cute or sad and elicited no sympathy from me. He was given very short time along with Crachet and his whole family. You never got a sense they were suffering very badly.The whole story just falls flat.When Scrooge rails against his nephew as being a poor man I expected to see him in a little house with barely any room. Instead he's got a great house with riches galore.

Now the animation was good in some places. The snow effects were incredible, with the 3D effect it was as if the snow was falling right on top of you in front of your eyes even.And the swooping around London and the past was also a treat. I will say that with the animation the three ghosts visits were done much better than most live movies can do, though now with special F/X even that is not great as it once was.Still I think some of the ghosts and images may be too intense for little kids and may scare them. I sat behind a family of at least three kids and the youngest boy was a little scared at times.The ghost of the future was a little too ghoulish.The ghost of Christmas present was just a little to sexy for a kids movie with the chest showing and all, looking like a sexy Santa even. Way to confuse the kids.One of my complaints has to do with the fact that everyone other than the villain all had what I call chipmunk cheeks. It seems to be the effect they go for in realism cartooning but it comes off as silly looking.

Jim Carry of course carries this whole movie. From Scrooge to the three ghosts he shoulders most of the dialogue. I really think this is a mistake. Robert Zemenkis did the same thing in the Polar Express with Tom Hanks and once again the idea fails. By having the same person provide the voices and for these new animation styles their mannerisms and body language you fail to have originality. Having different actors would have been better, would have given us different voices which could have injected some more life into the movie.As previously mentioned the movie felt flat and having a limited number of voice actors I think hurt it's approach. Carry is great at facial expressions but as a voice actor he doesn't quite get it. A great voice actor can alter their voices so well you would be hard pressed to know if it was the same person. Carry is not able to do so. The other actors are given very short scenes so as they just don't even factor into the story.

I'm giving it two ticket stubs out of five. Very good animation does not make up for lackluster voice acting and a bland retelling.

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