Although I was born at the end of the 20th
century (1993), I still watched a lot of old movies growing up. I noticed that
many of them were musicals.
There was “The Wizard of Oz”, “Singing in the Rain”, “The Sound
of Music” and many, many more. Then there were the Disney classics, like “Cinderella”
and “The Little Mermaid”. But Disney still makes their classics musicals, even
if they [sadly] stopped doing 2D-animated movies after 2011.
While there are musical movies of this century, like “The
Greatest Showman” and “Mamma Mia”, I am going to focus on those released in the
Why were musicals so big? Was it because movies were new
forms of entertainment in the early 1900’s. Well, those had no dialogue, except
for words shown on the screen after the scenes.
But once dialogue could be heard and not explained through
separate words on the screen, musical films were born.
Of course, not every movie was a musical. For example, could
you imagine films like “Jaws” being a musical? Or “Friday the 13th”?
I think horror and thriller movies would have looked strange with singing and dancing.
By the end of the 20th century, musical movies
seemed less common. Maybe people were tired of them? Or they wanted to focus more
on the stories than the singing and dancing? There are people who favor that
more. Therefore, they prefer live plays over musicals. I’m the opposite,
though. I find shows with singing and dancing more fun to watch as they look much
harder to perform in. But that’s another topic.
Musical films seem a lot less common these days. Oh well.
Just like time, trends change. I have not seen “The Greatest Showman”, but I
have seen “Into the Woods”. Although I usually enjoy musicals, I will admit
that “Into the Woods” wasn’t really my cup of tea.
This post may have seemed like a lot of questions asked. But
it is just an observation of movies and their trends.
Who doesn’t love movies? I don’t know about you, but I
always have. There were also times where I didn’t know what I was watching. This
was mostly when I was little.
I just saw scenes and enjoyed the characters. But did not
know the plot. When I was an older child, I started understanding the storylines
of movies. When I studied creative writing, I started pointing out plot points
(inciting incident, call-to-action, midpoint, falling action, and resolution).
Many adults will understand sarcastic or dry humor. Unfortunately,
I don’t, although I do get the inappropriate stuff, even when it’s snuck into G
and PG-rated movies. People may also point out hidden symbolisms.
What I do, though, is not only identify the plot points as
well as the main conflict and other literary elements, but I also point out
these two unique things:
1: Moments that would get you arrested in real life
Have you seen “Toy Story 2” or “Night at the Museum 3” or
even watched “Ned’s Declassified: School Survival Guide” on TV? If not, I would
not suggest reading forward—unless you
are uninterested in watching them.
So here it is. Remember in “Night at the Museum 3”, when
Lancelot went crazy and ran on stage during a live performance of “Camelot”?
Rather than calling security and having Lancelot arrested, the guy playing Arthur
just explained to him that he was just an actor and held the play as he calmly
told Lancelot to get off the stage. However, if you run on stage during a live-performance
in real life, you would get arrested. Forget about yelling at the actors and
threatening to hurt them, like Lancelot did. You could run on stage, stand there,
and say nothing and still get arrested. Just the action itself is illegal.
In “Toy Story 2”, Al steals Woody from the garage sale Andy’s
mom holds. He gets away with it. Andy’s mom doesn’t bother to call the police.
However, in real life, not only would Al have been arrested for stealing, but
so would have Andy’s mother for failing to report a crime she’d witnessed. But
if that happened, Andy and Molly would’ve been taken away by CPS and the ending
would’ve been too sad. Therefore, “Toy Story 3” may never have been made as audiences
would have complained about the ending to “Toy Story 2”.
In an episode of “Ned’s Declassified”, where students were
having the fifth graders tour the middle school, there was a scene when one of
them (not in sight) that removed Seth’s clothes. He was naked while using a plush
elephant to cover himself. Everybody else laughed. A younger kid may have done
the same. A parent may have stated that it was inappropriate and turned off the
TV. I, as an older sibling, reacted by saying, “You’d get arrested for that in
real life.” Yup, even as young as 17, I was pointing out things that would get
you arrested in real life.
Because of having to learn about the importance of believability
in prose writing, I have developed expectations too high for movies and TV
shows. I now find it strange when characters in movies do things that real people
would get arrested for, but the characters don’t. So many illegal activities
happened constantly in the movies “Monster Truck” and “Dumb and Dumber Too”,
but the characters didn’t get arrested because of plot movements or
While many say “It’s just a movie”, that can also be an
issue. Someone who doesn’t know better may imitate those actions and get
surprised when they get arrested because the characters in the film didn’t get
arrested. Then someone could try to sue the film company.
If the characters can’t get arrested for plot reasons, couldn’t
there, at least, be a disclaimer in the end credits, warning audiences not to
try those activities or else they’ll get arrested?
2: Things that would not be acceptable today
There are so many of these. I could not state them in one
post. However, I will give a few examples of movies that I don’t think would
come out today.
“A Christmas Story”
If you’ve seen this film, the kid, Ralphie, wants a bb gun
for Christmas. Obviously, in the 80’s, that was acceptable. However, today, after
so much gun violence, especially in the US, I do not believe this would be
acceptable today. No way would a child with a bb gun be appropriate.
Although rated G, there is smoking, drinking, and the use of
a dirty word, which I will not specify. Smoking wasn’t always inappropriate,
especially when people were unaware of the dangers before the 60’s. They
thought smoking was cool. And “Pinocchio” was released in 1940. That was at least
20 years before smoking-dangers were discovered. And even then, people were
resistant to the studies. I saw in a video that it was not until the 90’s when
smoking became inappropriate for young audiences. I don’t think “Pinocchio”
would be released today.
“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”
Just this past holiday season, this movie got tons of
criticism for it being offensive, promoting prejudice and discrimination, and
more. I was confused, so I watched the film. And I could see why people
complained. When Rudolph’s nose cover came off, revealing his red nose, the
other reindeer freaked out. Even Santa took their side (“You should be ashamed
of yourself,” Santa said to Rudolph’s dad). The elf boss gave Hermey a hard
time about being a dentist and not wanting to make toys. “You’re an elf, and
elves make toys!” the boss said. Umm… that’s elfist. Another scene is where
Rudolph, Hermey, and Yukon Cornelius arrived on the land of misfit toys. There
is a Jack-in-the-box whose name is actually Charlie. He complained that no kid
would want to play with a Charlie-in-the-box (that’s namist). Sensitivity is
growing for some reason. So I could never see “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”
being released today.
So that is really it for what I look for in movies. I apologize
if I seem overcritical at times. But thanks for reading.
This film must have been so hard to produce. And that is
what makes it so enjoyable. It probably involved a lot of studies behind the
mind and emotions.
There were actually going to be more emotions than the five
the film created for Riley. But that didn’t work out.
Enough said on the introduction. Let’s get down to the
First, the strengths:
1: The mind and emotion constructions
The mind is an abstract place. The creators made everything so
literal, and that must’ve been very difficult. There was the train of thought,
the core memories, islands representing Riley’s different interests and life
essentials, and, of course, the emotions: Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust, and
The emotions matured as Riley aged over time. When Riley was
a toddler, the emotions would react strongly to broccoli and no dessert if she
didn’t finish her dinner (which had no protein, by the way. But that’s another
By the time Riley was eleven, the emotions have matured even more. I appreciated how Joy could feel grief and pain as she was unable to make Riley happy throughout much of the film. She even cried in the “all is lost” moment. However, there is also a special feature of Riley without her internal emotions being shown. And I heard the viewer can understand why Riley can’t be happy.
Who doesn’t love Bing Bong? Or that cute little song Riley
made up as a toddler? He was such an imaginative character as well as a fun
one. I loved when he barged into Riley’s dream. But it was very sad when he
died as Joy had to continue her way back to headquarters.
3: The “Triple Dent Gum” song
Why was that song so annoying to Riley and even the bus driver
in the end credits? I found it amazing and funny. It was a great way to incorporate
4: The boy’s emotions at the end
“Girl, girl, girl.” The emotions panic like crazy in his
head. It was so hilarious. It is also realistic for boys if girls like them. Many
have been nervous about impressing girls. The animals’ emotions were funny too.
Which brings me to the flaws…
1: Why do Riley’s parents have all male or female emotions
while Riley has both?
This plot hole has been wondered so much by the general
public. However, the creators revealed that it was just for humor. I guess that’ll
2: Why do the Andersons move?
When things go well, of course conflict has to happen. However,
why did Mr. and Mrs. Anderson sell the house? Why did they move to a less-appealing
building, both unattractive on the outside and the inside? Were they unable to
afford the house in Minnesota? Did one of the parents get offered a new job in
It makes sense for Riley to be unhappy with the move. At the end, one of her parents says that they missed Minnesota (but they were the one who chose to leave). Is it supposed to remain a mystery?
3: Would a pizzeria really only serve broccoli pizza?
It’s believable for a pizzeria to only to plain cheese
pizza. But just broccoli pizza, only for plot convenience? I can’t imagine so. Also,
couldn’t Riley have just removed the broccoli from her pizza?
4: “Child runs away from home and parents comfort them after”
I don’t know why the media keeps portraying this. It’s not really
credible, let alone allowing an eleven-year-old to walk to school unsupervised
in the 2010s (which would get you in trouble with CPS). Riley also stole her
mom’s credit card to pay for a bus ticket back to Minnesota. Add that to running
away, Riley would’ve gotten the beating of her life and been severely punished
for months if this were believable. But the parents had to feel sorry just for
plot convenience. Kids, don’t try this in real life. You will most definitely
get the beating of your life as well as be grounded for several months—at least.
5: Toddler Riley has no nipples
Okay, this might be a bit much, although they show topless
Toddler Riley. And she has no nipples. When I saw this in the movie theater, I found
it strange and was thinking “Maggie Simpson has nipples”.
And that’s all. I would rate this movie 5 out of 5 stars. It must’ve been one of the hardest films for Pixar and Disney to create. I always found productions that look so challenging to make more enjoyable than those that look to easy to create.
I saw this movie with camp when I was eight. It was one of
Disney’s few successful features in the early 2000’s. It had a few sequels and
even a TV series on Disney Channel.
The story centers around an alien and a little girl from
Hawaii desperate for a friend. Stitch is blasted off a planet. At that point,
he is dangerous and his identity is Experiment 626. The POV switches to Lilo, a
small girl late for her luau class after feeding Pudge the fish his peanut-butter
sandwich. Lilo and the other girls break out into a fight and then she runs
away unsupervised. Her older sister, Nani, gets in trouble with CPS as a
consequence for the escape. After an arguement between the two, Nani forgives
Lilo. The two go to adopt a dog. Lilo chooses Stitch, thinking he is a dog. Their
time begins from there.
Now here are the strengths of this film.
1: The plot
In some ways, it reminds me a lot of “Beauty and the Beast”.
The structure of scenes, the characterizations and actions of both Stitch and
Lilo, and how they go from an unhealthy to heartwarming bond. Does that ring a
bell? I can’t imagine this was intentional, but it was well-executed.
2: The Elvis music
Not often do you hear pop music in a Disney movie. Although “Lilo
& Stitch” is sometimes treated like classics such as “The Little Mermaid”
or “Pinocchio”, it sometimes is not. None of the characters sing. But the scenes
where Stitch plays the guitar dressed as Elvis and where “Hound Dog” and “Burning
Love” play are great.
3: The way this film was promoted (lol)
As a way to promote the movie, Stitch barged into classics,
such as “The Little Mermaid”, “Beauty and the Beast”, “Aladdin” and “The Lion
King”. I love this line from the others, “Get your own movie” (Belle really is
a funny girl). I will admit, however, that the picture quality wasn’t the
Which brings me to moments that could’ve been improved or
1: How does Stitch learn to speak?
The alien somehow goes from monstrous feral beast to knowing
how to use developed speech like a human. Yet, it is never explained why or how
(correct me if it gets revealed in the series or one of the sequels). I was surprised
to hear that there is talk on making a live-action “Lilo and Stitch” remake. I
don’t know if this plothole will be resolved, though, depending on how many
people are bugged by this. But it’d be nice if this question is answered.
2: Why was Cobra Bubbles there at Lilo’s birthday in that brief
I get he was an important character, but doesn’t anyone find
it a bit strange to invite someone from CPS to celebrate a child’s birthday? I
wouldn’t do that.
That’s really it. I would rate “Lilo & Stitch” 5 out of
As children in different stages of our youth (early childhood,
grade school age, and adolescence) we all had different tastes in different pop
culture and entertainment. When we were babies and small children, about ages 3
– 5*, we loved pretty much the same movies and TV shows, such as “Barney and
Friends”, “Sesame Street”, Teletubbies” and “Blue’s Clues”. And as we got
older, by around 6, our tastes split up as we discovered our personalities and
differences. Some of us watched Cartoon Network, such as “The PowerPuff Girls”,
“Scooby Doo”, “Dexter’s Laboratory” and “Codename: Kids Next Door”. Some of us
enjoyed Nickelodeon and their programs, such as “Rugrats” “Spongebob SquarePants”
“The Fairly Odd Parents” and “Danny Phantom”. Some loved Disney Channel and
their shows, like “Lizzie McGuire”, “Hannah Montana”, “Kim Possible” and “Phineas
and Ferb”. And others mixed and matched channels.
By about 10 – 11, some kids might find those shows childish
and watch to move on to older shows, which can be an issue as many are too inappropriate
for children. Tweens might be a common time for kids to get attracted to unsuitable
content (or at least was when I was that age). It’s probably gotten younger
over the years as society changed kids’ tastes and how quickly their favors
matured. But there probably is and never will be an average age a kid gets
attracted to stuff that’s too inappropriate from them and adults have to stop
them. It likely varies a lot from as early as 2.5 – 3 years old and as late as
young teens. But that’s another topic.
By early teens, 13 – 14, depending on their parents or
guardians’ rules, some may outgrow all kids shows as they are ready for PG-13
content, such as occasional swearing. At 15 – 17, a kid may be interested in R-rated
movies. Parents might deny the film them at the younger end of that range. By 18,
they’re ready for a purely mature taste in entertainment.
But that’s just an example based on psychological development
as well as the individual’s environment and taught mindsets. In fact, many kids
and adults do not follow that expected standard. I most definitely didn’t want
to. Sometimes, I got to follow my tastes my way. But that was more recently in my
In fact, during my youth, I was constantly being judged by
others. Worse, I was being pressured to “grow up.” As early as 10, I was taught
that I was too old for family-appropriate movies. For instance, I was 10 when I
saw the movie “Home on the Range” in the theaters. Six months later, I wanted
to get it on DVD. But my mom was shocked and said I was too old. I was in sixth
grade then, and I was really annoyed. She was treating like it was geared
toward early childhood and was as young as “Teletubbies”. At 11, I was told I
was too old for “Rugrats” (the spin-off didn’t matter in this case). At 12, I
was told I was too big for Waffle Boy games (based of the Waffle Crisp cereal)
and “The Fairly Odd Parents”. At 13, I was told I was too old for “Happy Feet”
and “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” – the film.
For years I would believe that. I would even avoid many
Disney movies because I was “too big”. It wasn’t until young adulthood I
revisited my childhood cartoons and stopped considering myself too old for them.
I wish I didn’t have to live with that insecurity for years. I would either avoid
them like the plague, or watch them secretly, but insecurely. But I never
should’ve had to.
In fact, many of my peers then enjoyed clean TV shows and
movies such as anime and even Nick JR. I’m not kidding. Because of what I was
taught, I would tell other kids they were too old for shows like “Dora the Explorer”.
They were unhappy.
If only my family had empathized with me and understood that
I did NOT choose to like the “childish” entertainment forms. Instead, they
treated it like it was at least as bad as watching something inappropriate. It
While there are negative psychological effects if a young
person watches something inappropriate, there is nothing for watching something
you’re “too old” for. Yes, children need to be taught what behaviors they are too big for. But they should get to watch what
they love as long as it’s appropriate. And adults can watch anything, including
It’s okay to love something that others believe are geared
toward younger children. Just because something is clean and has no mature
content, that doesn’t mean it’s only for little kids. Older kids and adults
deserve the right to watch what appeals to them.
You should be able to watch something, regardless of rating or cleanliness, with no problem—with 100% confidence. Don’t let others judge you. In fact, I wish I had never been judged the way I was. For instance, I used to keep it secret from my peers in middle school that I liked “Danny Phantom” because I was constantly judged.
Now, with the exception of Disney, if I want to watch a family-friendly
show or film, I go into another room and keep the volume low (this is only if I’m
home). If someone comes inside, I pause the video and turn the device away from
the other person. And I don’t like it. I want to be confident with watching a
clean movie or TV show without someone criticizing me.
Don’t be afraid to walk into a bar with a “Mickey Mouse” shirt.
Don’t be afraid to go into a casino with a “Shrek” tattoo in a visible area. It’s
all right to love “The PowerPuff Girls” at 25 (my current age). It’s fine to
love “The Fairly Odd Parents” at 30. And it’s more than acceptable to be passionate
about “Shrek” at 60.
I am abandoning all the pressures to outgrow my likes for
clean entertainment. But it’s very difficult and is going slow. It might take
several years. Hopefully, it doesn’t. I am never too old for what I like. The only
exceptions are stuff like “Barney” and “Teletubbies”, where there is little to
no conflict and problems are resolved in a mild cute way. Those shows were definitely
intended for early childhood.
And here’s a bonus fact: many “kid’s” TV shows and movies
have jokes or references that only adults could get. “Bee Movie” is an example.
So remember, love what you love. Don’t be insecure. Don’t
let others judge you. Don’t force yourself to stop enjoying something because people
say you’re too old. Be who you want to be. And most importantly, who you are.
*This varies a lot, especially in recent years. It’s just an
estimate. No two children of the same age are alike in their entertainment
I saw this film a year after it was released in theaters. I watched it at my house. It was such a beautiful movie.
As a baby, Moana is interested in the story she is hearing in daycare about Maui stealing the heart of Te Fiti. All the other children are scared. Moana is somehow called to the ocean. But her overprotective father forbids her to go near it.
Years later, when Moana has reached her current age for the main part of the story, there is a shortage of fish by the reef. Moana suggests going beyond the reef. But her father gets angry and will still prohibit anyone going further than the reef. Moana’s mother reveals why her dad is so against going beyond the reef. Moana tries sailing, but it ends up not working out. Her grandma shows the story of her ancestors and how they used to go beyond the reef all the time. They stopped because there were too many dangerous monsters, especially Te Ka the lava demon. Unfortunately, not long after, Moana’s grandmother is dying. She tells Moana to sail out to the ocean, seek Maui, and return the heart of Te Fiti. Moana’s journey begins from there.
I really admired many parts of this movie, from the story to the characters, especially Moana. She is one of the few Disney princesses to have no love interest. The other two are Merida and Elsa (which is why fans were begging Disney to give Elsa a girlfriend in the “Frozen” sequel). Anyway, Moana was fierce, brave, and strong, which is what many expect for female characters today.
The music was also fantastic. Many songs sounded different from traditional Disney songs. Some sounded more like pop songs, such as “How Far I’ll Go” and “Shiny”. I particularly appreciated the rap section in “You’re Welcome” sung by Maui.
That being said, there were a couple flaws in this movie, such as some urine jokes and (sorry to disappoint some of you) the coconut pirate scene. I loved when Moana said that they were cute and then they went vicious. However, I couldn’t see how important it was to the story. I felt it was just a little filler to add conflict. And the story told in Moana’s daycare is really too mature for little kids. It was only used for plot convenience.
The ending was beautiful. After violence with Te Ka the lava monster, Moana figured out that she was really Te Fiti without the heart. The scene where Moana returns the heart and Te Fiti turns back into a beautiful Goddess and Island was heartwarming. It was also funny how Te Fiti looks a lot like Moana.
I would rate Moana 5 out of 5 stars. It is such a wonderful movie that I would recommend to all, especially with a strong, independent female lead.
I’ve never been a superhero fan, regardless of brand or characters. I saw “Thor Ragnarok” at a birthday party a little over a year ago. It turned out better than I thought. However, I will say that I didn’t love it.
The film starts with Thor is some underworld environment. He then joins his father and brother. Thor discovers that the planet, Asgard, is in danger. In fact, an evil woman, named Hela, gains so much power and puts the whole planet in danger as she becomes a tyrant.
Thor is whisked away to another planet, where there are messed up beings and cannibals. Thor is imprisoned somewhere. Not long after, his hair is cut and he has to fight the Hulk in a stadium. Meanwhile, Asgard is falling apart. It takes time for Thor to get others to trust him and try to save his planet.
Unfortunately, the planet is pretty much destroyed once Thor arrives. The people there have to move to Earth.
The film was interesting. I will admit that. But I found some things disappointing, like when Thor had his long hair chopped off (I actually have a super-painful memory of me experiencing my hair chopped off years ago) as well as his eye removed. I felt sorry for Thor’s hair to be cut and right after that, the crowd booing at him. At least the scissors guy let Thor keep his beard. As for the eye, something satisfying happened in the “Avengers” film with all the Marvel characters (I won’t say what, though).
Hela was so evil. She was not only unlikable to the point that I couldn’t even have just the tiniest amount of sympathy for her, but she also wasn’t really believable . She just abused her power. Maybe she has a tragic backstory and wasn’t always evil. But pure evil villains are too stereotypical and even lazy.
Thor’s brother wasn’t too likable, either. The ruler of the planet (played by Jeff Goldblum) or the Grandmaster, was wicked in a special way. He was calm and acted more positively. I think that’s more creative than the approach to developing Hela.
The ending was disappointing too. I know this is an installment, but still. It could have been at least a little more satisfying. Will things turn around later?
I would rate “Thor Ragnarok” 3.5 out of 5 stars. It was engaging. I will also admit that many parts were funny. Just a few things didn’t really work out for me.
Many of us have seen Disney’s “Pocahontas”, whether we grew
up with it, watched it in our early childhoods, or first saw it in recent
years. I was 21 when I first saw it. Despite the mixed success and criticism on
the movie’s portrayal of Native Americans, I really enjoyed the film. I would
give it five stars.
However, no story, in any form, is without its flaws. Aside
from the grossly insensitive lyrics in the song, “Savages”, sung when John
Smith is about to be executed (but he is rescued, of course), there are a few
parts of “Pocahontas” that bother me a bit. They are plot holes. Regardless of
what I said about them, I don’t obsess over them. At least not too much.
There’s the first plot hole, of where are Nakoma’s
(Pocahontas’s friend) parents or guardians. The second is how did Pocahontas
sneak out to see Grandmother Willow after her father yelled at her for
wandering off at a dangerous time. And the third, which this post focuses on,
is where do those flying leaves come from.
I noticed they come at crucial points of the story. They
also seem to arrive when characters change. Obviously, Pocahontas is not
unknowingly or secretly an enchantress (that would make an interesting
conspiracy theory, but would be shut down by everyone). But what is the point
of the flying colored leaves? I’ve actually recently nicknamed them the deux ex
Having you also noticed this? When Powhatan is about to
execute John Smith and Pocahontas not only saves her love interest, but also defends
him, the leaves fly into Powhatan’s face. He closes his eyes and seems to
absorb the wind. Then he suddenly changes and decides not to fight the English.
He also lets John Smith go.
I don’t believe the leaves forced Powhatan to change. Nor do I think they have a bunch of supernatural powers (they do have some, though, as they alter John’s shirt during the “Colors of the Wind” number). But it seems to be a mystery to where they come from and what powers they have besides changing colors as they fly as well as a few other skills.
Thirty years prior to the film’s main time setting, an orphaned baby is put to bed in his crib. The infant sees Santa come down the chimney. The baby crawls into the sack while Santa is not looking.
Santa returns to his workshop, only to discover the infant coming out of his sack. An elf reads his diaper and sees the name, Buddy. An elder elf, known as Papa Elf, adopts the child and his name becomes Buddy.
Through the years, Buddy notices that he is different from the other elves. He grows much bigger than them. After realizing his differences, Buddy leaves the north pole to seek his father in New York City.
This film was absolutely funny. Buddy had such a great sense of humor by acting uncivilized in New York City as he has never been around humans, besides Santa Claus. He runs into a coffee place that says in its sign that it’s the world’s best coffee, and congratulates them loudly. He also tries to hug a racoon, drinks an entire bottle of Coke and burps for a long time, and screams happily in revolving doors.
But the funniest moment of all is when Buddy sees “Santa” at the mall and gets excited. Then he discovers that he was just an ordinary guy dressed as Santa. He rips off the beard, the kids scream, and he wrestles the man. So hilarious!
I would gladly recommend “Elf” as a great holiday classic and comedy. It is a definite 5 out of 5 star-rated film.
I first saw this film last year around the holidays. I can’t remember why. But I enjoyed it both then and this year. It’s about the legend of Santa and his early life, why he does certain things, and much more.
I’m not going to narrate the whole movie. But I am going to point out what I thought worked well and what could’ve been better.
First with the strengths.
1: The plot and reasons behind Santa’s life and choices
Using the song “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” as a guide, I must admit that this was done with lots of thought put into it. It was likely no easy task, let alone the stop-motion animation. You find out why Santa was called Kris Kringle in his early life, why he wears red, why he goes through the chimney to deliver toys, and a lot more.
2: The musical numbers
Every song in this film is fantastic. They have great tunes, lyrics, and emotional sensation.
3: The brief Rudolph cameo
When the children are naming Santa’s reindeer, one almost acknowledges Rudolph until the narrator stops them and says, “That’s a different story.” Even the character’s design in this film differed from the Rudolph in 1964’s “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer”. Lol.
And now onto the parts that could’ve been improved.
1: Kris Kringle’s character design as a young man
As much as I enjoyed this movie, to be honest, I was never a fan of Kris Kringle’s youthful face with mature voice. I don’t know his age at the time, but still.
2: Why were the wizard and penguin still alive when Santa reached old age?
Unless the wizard was supposed to live longer with magic, even if he lost most of it (and this was made long before “Harry Potter”), shouldn’t he have died years before? Same with the penguin?
Yes, yes, I know. It’s a child-friendly movie. So death might be too mature. Even if it was never mentioned and the warlock and penguin disappeared without reason, it still would’ve raised questions to parents.
However, to young childless adults, like me, it feels strange and unrealistic. Oh well. It’s a cartoon.
3: The characters never really expressed strong emotions
Even in high-stressful situations, characters barely reacted. Their emotions seemed weak and neutral. It’s kind of hard to relate to them like that. In other child-friendly movies, characters will react more strongly, thus making them more believable.
That’s all. Despite some of the flaws, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” is a great film, worthy of 5 out of 5 stars.