The Adventures of Tintin…

The Adventures of Tintin… December 22, 2011

… A very quick review.

The Adventures of Tintin

My son & I have been long time fans of the Tintin comic books and we carried that enthusiasm with us when we went last evening to watch the movie opening night. Neither of was disappointed.

I was anticipating the latest instrumental music score composed by John Williams – one the most recognizable composers having done the scores for Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Schindler’s List, and the movie that gave me an irrational fear of dinosaurs, Jurassic Park. It’s been over 3 years since movie goers last heard his music on the big screen, not since that one movie that should have never been made, whose name we do not speak.

I love movies with instrumental scores composed specifically for the movie, with it’s various scenes and individual characters kept in mind. Composed film scores in these instances become integral parts of the film, like scenery and mood development. I loathe movies that are nothing more than 2 hour long music videos full of insipid pop music. For that reason alone I will not be taking my son to the latest Chipmunk or Happy Feet movie.

Directed by Steven Spielberg, The Adventures of Tintin is based on parts taken from three comics; The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure. It was fun to see visual clues hinting to the other Tintin Adventures sprinkled throughout the movie, so if you’re familiar with the rest of the series you’ll have fun picking them out.

Visually, the movie was as equally stunning as the score. It’s a smarter action movie directed toward older kids and kids at heart. At two hours running length I think smaller children will get antsy or bored with the intricate plot and historical references that will go over their heads.

Again, this isn’t a typical kid’s movie. There are no sexual innuendos, pop music or fart jokes. There’s physical comedy you’d typically see in adventure movies but not slap stick that most kids enjoy.

I think a few things a parent might find objectionable is Captain Haddock’s love of Whiskey and his drunken antics. Also, the action is intense, there’s is mild violence and gun use, and someone dies in the beginning of the film and there’s a tiny bit of blood. A more puritanical parent might find these offensive but for the most of us this is mild in comparison to other “children” movies that have been produced lately.

There are absolutely no sexual connotations and innuendos in this film that will make a parent uncomfortable. I’ve noticed a trend toward interjecting “adult humor” into children’s film, as if to imply adults can’t sit through a movie without some raunchy low brow humor directed at them for their enjoyment.

I can’t recommend Tintin more highly and if the world doesn’t end next year I’ll be as equally excited about the sequel currently in production.

Related Links: Long time fans of John Williams will enjoy the Wall Street Journals article, The Last Movie Maestro.

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