Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Film Review: Rise of the Guardians

So, I just saw down and watched Rise ofthe Guardians with my family, and I have to say, it was one of the more enjoyable films I've seen recently.

Right off the bat, let me start by tipping my hat to two of my personal favorite scenes in the film.

First, there is the cameo appearance of Ratón Pérez, a folktale of my father's heritage. If you've seen the movie and don't know what I'm talking about, click here.

Second, I want to go out right now and find the person, or people who re-envisioned the Easter Bunny as a 6'4”, boomerang-slinging, marshal-arts-trained Jackrabbit, and buy then dinner. While I'm not sure I would want said rabbit actually hiding eggs in my house, the character was a breath of new life to a story that I had thought was just too tired to be new.

The whole film is a wonderful, emotional fantasy centered on an outcast, upstart Jack Frost, who despite never having been seen by a child, understands the ideas of fun and joy better than most. The cast is rounded out by an ensemble crew of my favorite childhood fairy-tales, working to counter the evil workings of “Pitch,” or the Boogieman, a walking embodiment of children's nightmares.

While I was skeptical of the movie when I first saw it, now that I have actually watched it through, the story touched a lot of nerves with me, and in its own way, both resurrected some of my oldest demons, and beat them down again. In a way that only fantasy can, the movie reminded us of the power of wonder, the importance of belief, and the strength of hope.

The writing was wonderful, and I loved the banter between the characters. Even with a character as well defined as Santa Clause, the writers managed to put a new spin on the character, and make him that much more interesting. There are no dull figures in this story, and the narrative itself moves along at a brisk pace. Visually, the animation is wonderful, fast, detailed and even though much of the film is done in dark settings, the depth of the background is still brilliant.

Rise of the Guardians is a wonderful, vibrant story, and a thoroughly enjoyable film. Hats off to its creators, and to everyone else, sit down and enjoy, it will appeal to the child is all of you.