Today I would like to recommend a film that bombed at the US box office: The Adventures of Tintin. It’s based on a series of comic books by a Belgian man and children in other parts of the world were raised on these stories. He’s like their Encylopedia Brown, only he has a dog named Snowball that can communicate, he has his own apartment, and his enemies are a bit more sophisticated than Bugs Meany. When I first heard about this film, I thought the animation looked strange and that it had something to do with Rin Tin Tin. On the advice of a movie buff, I Red-boxed Tintin and was absolutely stunned.
It’s directed by Steven Spielberg and produced by Peter Jackson and contains the most stunning animation I’ve since since Rango (also a terrific movie.) Not only that, but it contains the single greatest chase scene I’ve ever seen in any movie. It was like an M. C. Esher painting, combined with a jigsaw puzzle, combined with a kaleidoscope, all at super high speeds. Throughout the film I was charmed by the voice work of Jaime Bell (Billy Elliot) as well as the moments of true thrill created by a compelling narrative. (Every now and then my movie companion would shout, “GO SNOWBALL!”) I can’t recommend the Adventures of Tintin enough.