Rise of the Guardians - Well that sure is a holiday film, huh? Santa, the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy et al teaming up like a kiddie version of Avengers, basically. It does remind me how even as a kid I wasn’t that much of Christmas person. Blame it on a Catholic upbringing if you will, but even now, as a non-believer, I find something special in the incense and solemnity of Easter celebrations.
Christmas less so.
Anyway, Rise entertains. It looks like a million dollars - the level of craft on the various environments alone stuns - even if the various characters look like they’ve been designed by different artists, leading to (perhaps) a lack of coherence within the film’s universe. Except for Jack Frost and The Bogeyman/Pitch, who look like they belong to a bland C-grade anime. Actually a Japanese animation comparison is apt, since the film does have a similar feel to the zippy, frequent action sequences.
But is it any good? Hard to say. The plot’s slight when it isn’t all over the place, and it hinges on kids believing, which feels a little bit lazy when not morally objectionable.
Then again, I quite like badass Russian Santa. He’s my favourite!
Marco Attard, 2012