Horton Hears a Who! (2008)

(On Cable TV, December 2016) Big, colourful and bold, Horton Hears a Who! Is nonetheless a wholly average animated film. I don’t mean this as a slam: After all, the bare minimum for a kid’s movie these days is something that won’t make adults run away screaming after the fifth repetition. In this regard, Horton Hears a Who! is decently successful: There’s a lot to look at in terms of animation, and the story is serviceable enough to string along the set pieces. There’s a good moment of needle-in-a-haystack despair late in the move that’s a bit heavier than I expected for a film for young audiences. While I’m told that the film is greatly expanded from the original book, much of Dr. Seuss’s particular whimsy is captured in the film’s aesthetics. (Unfortunately, I happen to dislike the Seuss style…) Voice performances are fine, the animation is decent … but the film as a whole remains just this side of forgettable. At least it’s not actively unpleasant, and that’s already something.

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