The Grinch film review: a gift this Christmas

Cindy Lou and the Grinch.
Cindy Lou and the Grinch.

DOES the world need another festive flick version of the Dr. Suess 1957 classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas following Jim Carrey’s 2000 live-action adaptation?

The answer is a whole-hearted “yes” after seeing the disgruntled orphan, whose heart is two times too small, in all his Illumination-produced animated glory.

With the title character voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch and narration from Pharrell Williams, The Grinch is a colourful, joyful and highly entertaining film to get everyone in the Christmas spirit, even those who might relate with the green creature’s anti-festive feelings.

Living with his loyal dog Max on Mount Crumpit, overlooking Whoville, the Grinch decides this year’s festivities are too much for him to handle when Mayor McGerkle (Angela Lansbury) decides Christmas needs to be three times bigger than before.

He plots to spoil Whoville’s Christmas celebration by stealing all the town’s decorations and gifts on Christmas Eve with an elaborate set of gadgets and gizmos.

The Grinch.

Meanwhile, five-year-old Cindy Lou (Cameron Seely) worries about her stressed single mother-of-three Donna Lou (Rashida Jones) and decides to stay awake on Christmas Eve to ask Santa for help.

There are laugh aloud moments, especially from supporting characters including Cindy Lou’s best friend Groopert (Brad O’Hare), the Grinch’s neighbour Bricklebaum (Kenan Thompson), coffee-making reindeer Fred who has a fondness for whipped cream and a random goat.

The film captures the childhood wonder of Christmas but more importantly, it tackles a bigger societal issue highlighted during the festive season – loneliness.

Kindness can change a life and a take-home message about inclusion is one of the greatest Grinch gifts of all.

 

THE ESSENTIALS

The Grinch (G)

Directed by: Scott Mosier and Yarrow Cheney

Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch, Pharrell Williams, Angela Lansbury

Three and a half stars

Review by Tanya MacNaughton

In cinemas November 29