“Tintin” is an animated marvel
Overseas, Europe was treated to Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of Herge’s Tintin, the popular comics of a French journalist that engages in Indiana Jones adventures with bumbling twin detectives and a sea captain chasing after whiskey. These issues are well-known for tackling mature themes of alcoholism and self-sacrifice while being a safe read for the younger crowd as well. Now the man known for enchanting those with E.T. and Peter Jackson who saved fandoms everywhere with Lord of the Rings collaberate together to make this long-awaited adaptation. Already it has made back its $135 million budget in its foreign gross, but over here…at least its grossed back more than Mars Needs Moms so far.
The major fault that lies is how we are to go in and know who these characters are. Those who are unfamiliar with Herge’s characters might have some difficulty understanding certain elements, but unlike The Muppets, we get an introduction to each one and come accustom to their personality. Tintin has a great love for adventure even if it’s really to make a story. Then again, we get so caught up in the eager journalist’s ventures that one gets to see little of his newspaper lifestyle.
Based on The Crab with the Golden Claws and Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin has to deal with murder and mystery over three models of an old ship that each hold to clue to treasure. unfortunately, Ivan Ivanovitch Sakharine is on the hunt and plans to obtain all three models and figure out the secret to where the long-lost treasure is. Needless to say, Daniel Craig was quite menacing as a villain and the character as a whole acts as a sinister gentleman that tries to act civil, but knows when to be fierce when needed. On the side, there’s Archibald Haddock, a drunk sea captain that is the last in line of Haddocks that are to inherit a great amount of gold. The only problem is that he is constant need of whiskey, which tends to be part of his character. For the most time, Andy Seksis’s performance as the Scottish sea dog steals the whole show with his bumbling antics and infamous yet silly cuss words like jellyfish or ectoplasm.
The Adventures of Tintin feels like one big stunt show. If you are a lover of action and chase, this is your movie. Nearly every scene goes by without a moment to stop and take a break from massive pieces like the chase in a Morocco village or the scene where Tintin gets abducted and Snowy chases after. One after another, there is non-stop running and gun fire that goes on and on. Its done rather well and camera movement is a callback to Spielberg’s days of 1980s action like Raiders of the Lost Ark or blockbuster treats like Jurassic Park. The entertainment value is there and really lives up to being highly recommended.
The pacing of the story goes by rather fast that one doesn’t stop to think how much time has passed. It gets you engaged into the characters and the environment around you with moments that feel like they were lifted out of a 1940 serial. As far as the motion capture goes, WETA has done a good job again in creating charactures as opposed to making animated real people to where ImageMovers Digital failed in. ImageMovers was trying to break new ground, as opposed to making use of it by bending the reality. As a result, they easily outdo The Polar Express and its experimental view of the motion capture system. Then again, WETA has already perfected it with Goulm and King Kong, so nuff said.
However, while Tintin is already a massive hit internationally, in America it’s slowly getting an audience but not as much. My prediction is that it will do moderate in the weeks to come, but not as powerful as the UK release. Then again, with no new releases this New Years Day weekend, there is potential of it climbing to the top spots and according to Box Office Mojo its daily gross has increased from $2 million to $4-$5 million per day (at least for now). The good news is that it has grossed more than Mars Needs Moms, a truly depressing and unpleasant piece that grossed only $24 million domestically and did far worse overseas with $17 million. In comparison, it’s not too late to see a wonderful flick before the year ends that lets you know all is well with the world and that Hollywood hasn’t lost its touch.
Posted on December 29, 2011, in In Theaters (Sort of) and tagged In Theaters Tintin Motion Capture American Herge Steven Spielberg Peter Jackson WETA. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.