Rise of the Guardians

"Excellent"

Rise of the Guardians Review


Vividly colourful details in the animation and script bring mythical characters to life in ways that are thoroughly engaging as this riotous action-comedy soars through its epic story. It's a bit frantic, barely pausing to let us admire the artistry, but it's a lively thrill-ride of a movie that will keep both adults and kids on the edge of their seats.

Jack Frost (Pine) is a lonely boy no one else can see, so he has no idea why he exists at all. He fills time creating snowy-icy mischief to make children laugh, and feels out of his depth when he is summoned by the Guardians of childhood: burly Russian Father Christmas (Baldwin), tough-talking Aussie Easter Bunny (Jackman), fluttering Tooth Fairy (Fisher) and wordless Sandman. They need him to help them defeat Pitch (Law), a boogeyman who is replacing children's imaginations with nasty nightmares in an effort to get them to believe only in him. So while Jack works out a plan to get rid of Pitch, he also needs to figure out if he belongs with the Guardians.

Screenwriter Lindsay-Abaire and the animation team have a lot of fun with the characters, which are loosely based on the William Joyce novels. Each person is fully formed, with terrific vocal work from gifted actors who pack their characters with personality, especially Baldwin and Jackman. So their interaction zings with attitude even as the imagery bursts with hilarious details. Since the story is centred on Jack, he's the one who carries us through, and he's an engaging reluctant hero in the vein of Harry Potter or Frodo Baggins. Watching him discover his own inner skills is often exhilarating.

Visually, the filmmakers use eye-catching 3D to make the most of every set-piece and setting. We want to freeze the frame and get a better look at each location, and even the smallest side characters are so fascinating that we'd like to see more of them. In other words, we sometimes feel overloaded with amazing stuff to see. So it's nice that the film's message is both important and understated: that we need to overcome our fears and celebrate the joy of life.

Rich Cline



Rise of the Guardians

Facts and Figures

Genre: Animation

Run time: 97 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 21st November 2012

Box Office Worldwide: $302.3M

Budget: $145M

Production compaines: DreamWorks Animation

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 59%

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Peter Ramsey

Producer: Nancy Bernstein,

Starring: as Jack Frost (voice), as North (voice), as Pitch (voice), as Tooth (voice), as E. Aster Bunnymund (voice), as Jamie (voice), Khamani Griffin as Caleb (voice), Kamil McFadden as Claude (voice), Georgie Grieve as Sophie Bennett, Emily Nordwind as Jamie's Mom / Jack's Mother, Jacob Bertrand as Monty, Olivia Mattingly as Pippa / Jack's Sister, Dominique Grund as Cupcake, Ryan Crego as Burgess Dog Walker, April Lawrence as Burgess Pedestrian


Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Inside Out Movie Review

Inside Out Movie Review

Those bright sparks at Pixar have done it again, taking a fiercely original approach to...

Southpaw Movie Review

Southpaw Movie Review

Slick direction and meaty performances may be enough for some viewers, but this boxing drama's...

Eden Movie Review

Eden Movie Review

Loose and impressionistic, this beautifully shot film traces the career of a DJ who pioneered...

The Gallows Movie Review

The Gallows Movie Review

Without a single moment of originality, this found-footage horror movie really deserves to be the...

Advertisement
Self/Less Movie Review

Self/Less Movie Review

An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs...

Ant-Man Movie Review

Ant-Man Movie Review

The increasingly stale Marvel formula gets a blast of fresh air in this rollocking adventure...

Love & Mercy Movie Review

Love & Mercy Movie Review

An unusually inventive approach brings this story to life, as the filmmakers get into the...

Ted 2 Movie Review

Ted 2 Movie Review

Fans of the surprise 2012 hit Ted will find plenty to love in this sequel,...

Advertisement