Audiences will not fall for ‘Rise of the Guardians’

Photo courtesy of Dreamworks Pictures

Movie: “Rise of the Guardians”

Release: Nov. 21

Rating: PG

Pitchforks: 2 out of 5

 

With Dec. 25 quickly approaching, Hollywood has started pumping out its holiday movies. DreamWorks Animation released its attempt at a Christmas movie with “Rise of the Guardians.” The movie is about the carefree Jack Frost (Chris Pine) and how he reluctantly joins a band of fairytale characters called “The Guardians” after Pitch Black (Jude Law) tries to engulf the entire world with darkness by causing children to have nightmares. The Guardians — Santa Claus (Alec Baldwin), the Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), the Tooth Fairy (Isla Fisher) and the mute Sandman — join forces to save the world from Pitch’s evil scheme.

While the movie has impressive visuals that will entertain children, adults will find this film hard to watch due to its lack of substance. There are a couple of moments that utilize the digital CGI to full effect. For example, Pitch Black and the Sandman have a visually striking battle in the middle of the air. Sadly, these moments are too few and far between. The majority of the movie is filled with inane scenes that make the audience yearn for the characters to get back to the fighting. Generally, films don’t need fighting and action to be entertaining, but this film certainly does.

Being that “Rise of the Guardians” is a holiday film, all the familiar cliché is present, but even more unbearable this time around. For example, the villain wants to ruin the holidays for everyone, but when one boy declares his belief in holiday spirit, the day is saved.

The main problem in “Rise of the Guardians’’ is its lack of focus. The film focuses on too many characters. “Rise of the Guardians” balances characters like an amateur clown trying to juggle on a unicycle. The film would have benefited from solely focusing on Jack Frost, or one of the other Guardians. The Easter Bunny is a great character in the film, but he doesn’t get enough screen time, so his character comes across as underdeveloped. The Tooth Fairy is also fantastic, but she has even less time than the Easter Bunny. Having all of these characters jam-packed in one film and still maintaining a coherent storyline is a difficult feat to accomplish.

“Rise of the Guardians” is not a bad film. It just isn’t anything spectacular. The movie sails under the radar without trying to do more with its material. Children will find some entertainment value in watching their fairytale icons fight on the big screen. This film is perfect for parents wanting to bring their kids to the movies during the holidays. But for everyone else, this is a Christmas movie to skip. With all the Christmas movies available by the click of a button, it is wiser just to go on Netflix and stay home for the holidays.

 

Reach the reporter at tverti@asu.edu