1 hr 37 min
Staff Writer: Nathaniel Brayton
Rise of the Guardians is a new superhero movie with some old classics. And, if you let your inner child run wild (like I do every day), it’s a magical holiday film.
The story begins and revolves around Jack Frost (Chris Pine), a teen with magical ice powers who only causes mischief. He has lived decades without any person being able to see him. In a nutshell, it is very lonely being Jack Frost. Until one day when Pitch (Jude Law) threatens the children of the world with fear. The mysterious man on the moon then summons all of The Guardians; Santa, The Easter Bunny, The Tooth Fairy, The Sandman, and a new Guardian, Jack Frost, to stop Pitch. From this alliance, Jack Frost finds his place among the greatest legends in history.
Like all good animated films, Rise of the Guardians contains itself. What I mean is the film doesn’t try to be a big epic; it’s self aware and lives in a small but awe-inspiring world. We jump from each Guardians’ homeland, which provides fresh scenery every 20 minutes. And while the movie doesn’t look hyper realistic, it has some of the best and most stunning visual effects.
Not only does it look good, but it sounds great. Chris Pine just keeps rising on my favorite actors list by proving that he can hold his own at voice acting. And Alec Baldwin is great as a tough Russian Santa with a soft center. Honestly, all the characters were rich and unique, especially the Tooth Fairy and silent Sandman.
Pitch and Jack Frost work great together. They are good foils to each other because they are the same person. The only thing that separates them is that Pitch wants everyone to share his loneliness. Jude Law also gives quite a chilling and dark performance. I really believe that he, along with all the other voice actors, got into their characters and that’s always beneficial to the end product. Even with all the dark moments, the film is balanced by very silly, light-hearted ones with Yetis and elves being the source of slapstick humor.
If I had a critique of the film it’s that everything felt a little too easy and not everything was explained, especially during the last ‘fight’ scene. It’s not an excuse, but this is almost expected in a children’s film.
Look, I understand these types of animated movies aren’t for everyone, but if you are warmed by holiday movies this might be one of the best. The best thing about animated movies is that when I watch them I forget about everything else and just relax because they are fun.
8.5out of ten