For a generically titled Christmas cash cow, Rise of the Guardians 3D is not a bad effort from Dreamworks. It’s a bit like The Avengers, but for little kids. Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Toothfairy and the Sandman all team up to look after the world’s children from the fear incited by the Boogeyman. Santa learns from the Man in the Moon that Jack Frost, frustrated for centuries that children haven’t believed in him, has been chosen as their new member, or guardian. Jack reluctantly joins the team in their battle to save the innocence of children while discovering more about his own past.
The story has its moments of grown up poignancy amidst its exciting fantasy, although the film does seem to lag int the middle. I actually didn’t mind the use of 3D. It’s bright without suffering from the customary colour-loss and it’s packed full of scenes with things running at you so at least it serves some purpose. The whole film is bright, unremarkable fun with a good heart and kids will certainly soak it up even if it’s still some way from the best that Pixar have produced (How to Train Your Dragon being a rare example of Dreamworks reaching that mark). It strikes a similar chord to last year’s Arthur Christmas, a cute festive tale of childhood innocence – sweet and passes the time nicely.
Review by David Rank
Rise of the Guardians 3D is out on 30th November in the UK and out now in the US. Certificate PG (UK). Running time 97 mins.
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