“THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN: THE SECRET OF THE UNICORN” My rating: B- (Opening wide on Dec. 21)
107 minutes | MPAA rating: PG
Steven Spielberg’s “The Adventures of Tintin” has so many jaw-dropping moments of visual splendor that it takes a while to realize that there’s really nothing much of interest here except the jaw-dropping visual splendor.
Employing the motion-capture animation techniques employed in films like “The Polar Express” and the Jim Carrey “Christmas Carol,” this screen adaptation of the late Herge’s universally popular comic book hero should please long-time fans. But it’s hard to imagine it winning many new converts to the Tintin brand.
Tintin (voiced by Jamie Bell of “Billy Elliott” fame) is a perpetually boyish, carrot-topped newspaper reporter who goes nowhere without a tan trench coat, brown knickers and a white pooch named Snowy.
He’s sort of like a junior Sherlock Holmes who’s always up to his neck in one mystery or another.
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“RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES” My rating: C (Opens wide on Aug. 5)
105 minutes | MPAA rating: PG-13
At about the one-hour-and-20-minute mark the simian protagonists of “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” rebel against their human captors/tormentors and run amuck in San Francisco. And for a few moments this moribund movie comes to life.
Getting to that point, though, is a real slog.
This prequel, which purports to show how those chimps, gorillas and orangutans in the original “Planet of the Apes” came to rule over humans, is sort of like a rejected Dickens novel. Instead of a plucky young human protagonist we have Caesar, an animated chimp acted by Andy Serkis (Gollum of the “LOTR” franchise) and made flesh — er, pixels — through the wonders of motion capture technology. (more…)
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