Aren't there some books or series you wish Hollywood had just left alone? Alas, when inspiration falls short, it's not uncommon for studios to go shopping for ideas in their local libraries or on Amazon. Sometimes they strike gold (The Hunger Games, Harry Potter) but when they muck up, as they have before with Dr Seuss books, it's bound to make any otherwise peace-loving fan see bloody red.
Fortunately 'Dr Seuss' The Lorax' is a far, far cry from the cinematic horrors that were 'The Grinch Who Stole Christmas' and 'The Cat In The Hat'. Following in the footsteps of 'Horton Hears a Who', this film is an animated feature awash in candy hues and featuring characters that put a smile on your face. And no, they don't talk in rhyme all the time.
What's it about?
Teg Wiggins (Zac Efron) is a 12-year-old living in Thneed-Ville, a town where the residents buy air and the trees are mechanical installations that run on batteries and come with a remote control. Like any good, hot-blooded male protagonist, Ted harbours a secret crush on his neighbour Audrey (Taylor Swift), whose dream it is to see a real live tree. Ted's batty grandmother (Betty White) tells him that he must visit the Once-ler (Ed Helms) to find out about trees.
The Once-ler turns out to be a wrinkled old man who keeps himself locked in, ashamed of his past. He was once a young inventor looking to make a 'thneed' - a product everyone needs. In his greed he chops down all the Truffula Trees around, paying no heed to forest's guardian The Lorax (Danny DeVito). And thus the responsibility of bringing trees back falls on Ted. However, determined to stop him is Aloysius O'Hare (Rob Riggle) who's made a fortune selling fresh air, and trees that make oxygen for free aren't exactly conducive to his business plans.
Dr Seuss' world comes alive in 3D but this movie could just as well be enjoyed in 2D too. Special mention should go to Betty White who makes Ted's grandmother one of our favourite characters. The Lorax himself is less endearing. DeVito tries hard to make the character, who looks like a cross between Garfield and a walrus, likeable but we're not really buying it. There are parts that feel a tad too preachy, but for the most the movie's a breezy ride.
What to do?
While kids will enjoy the pretty colours, baby bears, a trio of singing fish and the sing-along songs, it just might be a bit tedious for adults. But if you're looking for some clean, candy floss entertainment, you might want to give this a try.
in.com rating: 2.5/5
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