“Tintin” is a truly unique movie based on a classic Belgian comic strip that ended in 1986, but still remains popular today.
Directed by Steven Spielberg, the action scenes are well captured and, at some points, present a unique perspective that other action films wouldn’t take the risk to shoot. Spielberg’s direction succeeds in emphasizing that this is no ordinary movie, even from the first few minutes. This is his first directorial effort since 2008.
Jamie Bell, Simon Pegg, Daniel Craig and Andy Serkis are the stars of the film, all of whom, interestingly enough, are English. Jamie Bell’s performance as the main character, Tintin, is just as I’d imagined the character to act like and sound like in the comics. Because of the character’s detective-like nature, he’s constantly spouting lines of dialogue pertaining to the mystery to be solved and you don’t really get tired of hearing his voice. Suffice to say that the supporting cast of characters do just as well.
Many American viewers may know little to nothing about Tintin and his various adventures. This movie is animated, and it often indulges in slapstick humor just like viewers would expect from a “cartoon.”
However, the film is not a mere cartoon. There’s mortal danger left and right with guns and swordplay very prevalent. Characters are stabbed, shot and even die. How could such a mixture of genres exist? And yet, the film’s balance between humor and comedy is a bit shaky.
For example, there is a scene where two characters are stranded in the desert where Tintin hopes for survival but the other character begins having hallucinations from a combination of dehydration and withdrawal from alcohol. The audience, myself included, laughed at this scene which was played up for laughs. But I couldn’t help wondering whether or not this is a bit serious for children as the movie is rated PG and promoted as a family film. I’m all for a little violence in kids’ films, but alcoholism?
All in all, “Tintin” is a great piece of art that’s full of talent from every end of the spectrum. If you’re an action-loving adult, don’t be discouraged because you’ll get your fill. If you’re taking younger kids, though, I’d recommend having a talk with them about the darker themes after the film.
Perhaps Europeans fans will have a different opinion, but this American’s opinion is overwhelmingly positive.
March 03, 2011
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