Movie: "Rise of the Guardians" is Fun for All Ages
December 13, 2012
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Feel good family films are a staple in movie theaters during the holiday season. Regardless of whether or not they are live action or animated, they all tend to have common elements in plot, characters and theme (love conquers all, believing in kindness or the magic of Christmas, etc.). Although it certainly contains the aforementioned elements, "Rise of the Guardians" also weaves a lot of fun and creativity into its story.
When we meet Jack Frost (voiced by "Star Trek’s" Chris Pine) we are informed that he does not know what his purpose is or why he was chosen to be Jack Frost by the Man in the Moon in the first place. He goes through life playing practical jokes and making children happy by giving them snow days, but for all of his confidence, he is extremely lonely and bothered by the fact that no one can actually see him; for in order to be seen one must be believed in.
Sharing in Jack’s pain of not being believed in is the villain Pitch Black better known as the Boogeyman (voiced by "Sherlock Holmes’" Jude Law). Deciding that he is tired of hiding in the shadows, and wanting to go back to the days of the Dark Ages where fear ruled the world, Pitch creates a plan to conquer the world. The only thing that stands in his way is the Guardians that defeated him in the Dark Ages and have kept him at bay all of these years.
The Guardians consist of North (voiced by "30 Rock’s" Alec Baldwin), a Russian Santa; Tooth (voiced by "Wedding Crashers" Isla Fisher), the head tooth fairy; the Australian, boomerang wielding Easter Bunny (voiced by "X-Men’s" Hugh Jackman) and Sandy, the seemingly non-threatening sandman. When the Guardians are informed of the threat they rush into action, but are forced to take on Jack as a new ally per the Man in the Moons new instructions; but when Pitch comes into possession of something that can give Jack all of the answers he seeks, will he sacrifice his team to attain them?
With fear and nightmares running rampant in our world, and children losing their faith in them, will the Guardians be able to recover and save the children they have sworn to protect or will a new Dark Age begin?
"Rise of the Guardians" is a fun, creative film that is entertaining for children and adults alike. It is filled with winks and nods to the audience regarding the main characters origins and properly packs an emotional punch when necessary. All of the voice actors are superb and bring life to their characters well. The pacing is fine, especially for a film aimed at children, and the CGI and animation are average. For every obvious and overused plot device, there are a few twists and turns throughout that make it enjoyable. Overall, "Rise of the Guardians" is worth the price of admission; its creativity is surprising and the sweet innocence it portrays throughout, through some common themes and its characters, is endearing.
"Rise of the Guardians" runs 97 minutes and is rated PG for thematic elements and some mildly scary action. It is in theaters now.