Tuesday, October 19, 2021

MOVIE REVIEWS: RISE OF THE GUARDIANS

November 21, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The movie-review website RottenTomatoes.com is often generous when it bestows a “fresh” rating to a review that is only so-so. It is being especially magnanimous when it comes to the new DreamWorks Animation feature Rise of the Guardians. Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times, while admiring the “crisp, colorful fantasy world” that the animators have created, nevertheless concludes: “There’s an audience for this film. It’s not me. I gather younger children will like the breakneck action, the magical ability to fly and the young hero who has tired of only being a name. Their parents and older siblings may find the 89-minute running time quite long enough.” Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times warns that “There are some pretty scary bits for the munchkin crowd.” She goes on to note: “Some of the scenes are minimal in detail, others are jam-packed and can make for visual overload. There is a lot to savor in Rise of the Guardians, but sometimes too much of a good thing can be exhausting.” Claudia Puig in USA Today concedes that the movie “offers some moments of enchantment.” However, she goes on to remark that “the overall 3D computer-animated spectacle, with its roller-coaster pace and large cast of characters, seems as overloaded as a bulging Christmas stocking.” And A.O. Scott in the New York Times says that the movie “works so hard at celebrating wide eyes and naïve joy that it comes close to spoiling its own intermittent wonderfulness.” Each of the above reviews received a “fresh” rating from the folks at Rotten Tomatoes. To be sure, several reviews of the movie are quite positive. Michael O’Sullivan concludes his in the Washington Post by remarking, “It might not have been on your Christmas list, but with its fresh take on the power of myths, Rise of the Guardians is one present you won’t want to return.” Carrie Rickey in the Philadelphia Inquirer writes that it’s “destined to become a classic.” But those reviews are countered by outright pans. It is, writes Roger Moore in the Orlando Sentinel, “the worst animated movie to ever wear the DreamWorks logo.” Joe Neumeyer in the New York Daily News comments that while the film “aspires to holiday joy” it’s “as enjoyable as a sock full of coal.” And Kyle Smith in the New York Post, who awards it just half a star, calls it “frantic and bizarre,” and concludes: “[It’s] so odd, it’s like biting into what looks like chocolate ice cream and discovering it’s peach. No, stranger than that: liver.”