Friday, December 14, 2012

The Polar Express (Robert Zemeckis, 2004) Review

More Christmas. It's always a good thing, right? So anyway we have The Polar Express which was a film that was made during Robert Zemeckis' obsession of using motion capture suits in order to make his films as opposed to using real actors...kind of. Well, It's time to take a look at another Christmas film that I watch every year. Does that mean It's a good thing? Let's find out!

On the night of Christmas Eve, a young boy (Daryl Sabara) is woken up in the night by a train that stops right out side of his house. He is greeted by the train conductor (Tom Hanks) and is told that the train comes to those who doubt in the existence of Santa Claus (Tom Hanks) and are taken to the North Pole to meet him. The boy decides to go on the train to see if Santa is really real or not. He is joined by a young girl (Nona Gaye) and a nerdy kid (Eddie Deezen) who also have their doubts about Santa and from there, the journey to the North Pole begins.

This is Tom Hanks the movie. Why? Because Tom Hanks plays the majority of the characters in the film. He plays the conductor, Santa, the hobo on the train, the boy's dad and so on and so forth. I have no idea why but he is his good old self and therefore is pretty good. The other actors are alright. Eddie Deezen brings his usual nerdy self (you might know him as Mandark in Dexter's Laboratory) but the other kids are...tolerable...just.

Sure, it looks amazing and there are some great looking scenes but this film has some problems. The first two thirds of the film are really good (well, except the spontaneous and pointless musical number) but once it hits the last third, things really slow down and start to drag...and it's stupid because elves are introduced. Oh god do I hate elves but these ones are especially bad. It's a shame too because normally the climax is the best part of a film...not this time.

The Polar Express is an amazing looking film and the idea of children's faith in Santa is actually quite a good idea although it's not exactly an original idea. Tom Hanks is clearly having fun with the role and there are some memorable characters. There are problems with the film that do almost kill it but there is more good than bad. I watch this every year just because of how great it looks! I would recommend that you watch this at least once.

An interesting film that, while has some stupid moments, looks amazing and has more Tom Hanks than you can handle!

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