Arthur Christmas (2011)
Everyone knows that, each Christmas, Santa Claus delivers presents to every last child on Earth. What everyone doesn't know is that Santa accomplishes the feat with a very high-tech operation beneath the North Pole. But when the unthinkable happens, and Santa misses one child out of hundreds of millions, someone has to save the day. It's up to Arthur (James McAvoy), Santa's youngest son, to deliver a present to the forgotten tyke before Christmas morning dawns.
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Arthur Christmas Theatrical Review
Arthur Christmas is a great holiday film for the new and old generations. It's a movie that kids can watch with their parents and grandparents and everybody will laugh and enjoy it. It has something for everyone while still staying true to its values and cute storyline. It is unlikely it will become a holiday tradition or must-see Christmas flick, but it's a fun one to watch with the family over the holiday breaks.
The movie begins on Christmas Eve with the current Santa out on his 70th mission to deliver toys to all the children of the world. But this isn't your old sleigh and reindeer routine, Santa has entered the future riding his own spaceship, with an army of ninja-like stealth elves to assist in the billions of deliveries. Being a 21st century Santa he utilizes the latest techniques like converting cookies into bio-fuel. Santa's two kids, Steve (voiced by Hugh Laurie) and Arthur (James McAvoy) are back home at the North Pole helping out in their own special ways. Kids are going to love the super-fast, super-awesome elves as they dash through streets and find their way into houses to deliver gifts. It's really fun, exciting, and a great way to start off the film.
Even though Grandsanta made a few sexist jokes, this movie has a bunch of girl power. Mrs. Santa (Imelda Staunton) is always on top of things and you can tell she's the brains behind the bumbling mumbling Santa. There's also Bryony (Ashley Jensen) who is a hardcore gift-wrapping elf that assists Arthur Christmas and Grandsanta on their mission to deliver the last present to a little girl. There are a lot of family and sharing themes as well as other great lessons for kids to get from this picture. It's a well animated and decently paced film (there was a part in the middle that might lose some of the audience but it's a great time to take a bathroom break!). But overall it is very enjoyable film and it will be well received by just about anyone.
The movie is genuinely funny and is packed with many laughs, mostly geared for the younger generation. This was a joint project between Britain and America so a lot of the jokes are skewed towards the Brits. Some may appreciate that they set the movie outside of America as it gives a much needed geography lesson to audience members who forget there's a whole big world out there. There's a good balance of action and witty humor for kids and adults all mixed with holiday cheer and Christmas magic. It's almost surprising that it works, but it just does.
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