Rise of the Guardians by Dreamworks is a fun and frosty treat for younger kids this holiday season. It stars the titans of holiday (and everyday) whimsy—Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, and Jack Frost—in a way that doesn’t negate the religious connotations of Christmas and Easter so much as it sidesteps them. This movie is about the symbolism, the legends, and the fairy stories that create the core of a child’s holiday excitement. And this bunch—Santa, Easter Bunny, et al—have made it their mission to bring magic and whimsy into the lives of children all around the world and to guard that innocence and child-like belief.
|Every light on the globe is a child who believes.|
Chris Pine is the voice of Jack Frost, the legendary, magical bringer of snow and frost. Jack Frost is born one day, whole cloth, a young man who has to figure out his reason for existing. The Man In the Moon tells him he is Jack Frost; but tells him nothing else. He finds a magic staff and quickly discovers that he can freeze water, create snow, even fly. But when he lands in a village, people can’t see him and in fact walk right through him. He comes to terms with this and eventually enjoys his role as invisible imp, starting snowball fights, treating kids to a “snow day” off from school, and generally causing slippery but funny havoc everywhere.
|Tooth can't help but check out Jack's teeth.|
This is The Avengers for the young grammar school set. It’s rated PG for “thematic elements and some mildly scary action.” But I really have to ask: why is a Santa Claus/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy movie not rated G? Is anything rated G anymore? Does a story have to be the cinematic version of a child safety seat to get a G rating? Perhaps so. But the natural audience here is young kids; kids who believe in Santa and the Tooth Fairy. It’s just right for the holiday season. The animation is glorious. And the 3D effects are just the right enhancement to bring to life Jack Frost. 3D snow is very cool, no pun intended. There’s something for boys and girls here. My daughter loved the Tooth Fairy. I loved the moment when Tooth handed Pitch a quarter, then punched him square in the mouth, knocking out one of his teeth, pun intended.