Written by / 3/04/2012 / 1 Comment / , , , , ,

GROUCHY GROWNUP REVIEW OF THE LORAX

year: 2012 rating: *1/2
If you think Hollywood is the greediest moneygrubbing plastic city in the world, think again – and welcome to Thneedville, where every overly promoted, abundantly commercialized item costs bundles and, scariest of all, there are no trees.

Enter Ted, a kid smitten with a gorgeous girl Audrey, who has only one wish – painted along the back of her house are tall skinny things resembling straws harboring wispy windblown cotton candy. These are the long forgotten trees, and she wants one, a real one, badly. Through his wise old granny, Ted learns of The Once-ler, a hermit residing on the outskirts of the shallow metropolis: walled in and policed by a wicked, and very short, dictator O’Hare. But Ted gets easily past the border and, using his power scooter, zips into a dark flatland where he finds a faceless hermit in a spooky house.

Here he learns the backstory and what the film’s all about: Once-ler was once a poor farm boy who discovered a land abundant in nature and cutesy animals. He realizes, to make his dream invention – what he calls the Thneed (think of a Bionic Snuggie) – he has to chop down a tree: which summons our titular hero, The Lorax.

This mustached, peanut-shaped, blunt yet lovable orange creature (voiced by Danny DeVito) is an underdog environmentalist that can only point the Once-ler toward wisdom. But becoming a powerful businessman is Once-ler’s priority – and his Thneed's a big hit until all the trees are gone.

Now we’re back with Ted, whose input means very little – especially since the title character (who has surprisingly minimal screen time and plot relevance) is history and the real tale has been told. Nevertheless, Ted’s final mission is to plant one last seed. Although the greedy O’Hare – who sells clean air in cans and fake trees for big bucks – wants him stopped.

Kids will enjoy the wonderfully vivid animation and the cutesy characters, especially a bear cub and singing fish residing in the tree-laden forest. Here’s where the most involving, fast-paced action occurs. And the overly obvious environmental message works in scenes where each tree falls: like best friends dying slowly, and painfully, before your very eyes.

But once the movie ends with a corny singalong about letting it grow, you’ll realize this ninety-minute tale was really just a message with vibrant color: Other than a greedy entrepreneur cutting down trees to make money and then realizing his mistake, not much really happens.

Yet the real moral of this anti-capitalist movie is that it grossed a whopping $70 million this weekend. But since spending, and making, large amounts of money is a supposedly bad thing, you can do the producers a favor: instead of paying $14 bucks to watch THE LORAX, go plant a tree!
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1 comment:

  1. Kids, this is why you shouldn't drink when you get older. You wake up in the morning, New Year's Morning, and watch this movie. Bad. Bad. Bad. Bad. It could have been only Bad X3 but it gets the x4 because the music is horrific.

    Great review. Awful movie.

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