Movie Review: The Grinch

By Ceara Kelly: Staff Writer
[Illumination; 2018]
Rating: 2.5/10

Christmas is dead. People always talk about how it is nothing but a greedy holiday about money and nothing more, and after watching the newest remake of Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch, you can’t help but think maybe those people are right. There’s no other explanation for this abomination existing. No other movie takes a classic tale and turns it into a giant, overly expensive, outdated meme reference, trapping some of the best-known names in Hollywood in this holiday-themed hell like this one. But what did you expect from the third adaption of a children’s book that couldn’t even get the copyright for the title without throwing the author in there?

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Where to even begin with this ridiculous production… The changes unique to this adaption all leave you reeling. Did they really kill off Cindy Lou Who’s dad? Yes, and they did indeed imply that the Grinch himself is going to be her new stepdad. There’s also the implications created by using explicitly religious Christmas music in the film. There is now a confirmed Jesus Christ who died on a Whocifix for our Who-sins. We as viewers can no longer live in a pretend world where Christmas is just a fun holiday about family and giving in this universe. Even the Grinch worships Jesus in the end.

Bizarre plot decisions aside, the actual production quality of this film is terrible. There are so many imitated pan shots in this animation and all of them look out of focus. Not motion blurred, just plain old, not wearing glasses blurry. The worst part of this is that’s more expensive to do. Animation models aren’t naturally blurred even when the “camera” is moving. Either the artists in charge of these models were not good, or the studio made a conscious decision to spend more time and money to make the audience think they had to go to the eye doctor. It never blurs the scenes you don’t want to see, either. No, when the Grinch is twerking full frame, you have to suffer.

The humor is just terrible. Remember back in 2012 when screaming goats were the funniest thing on the internet? They are the funniest thing in this movie. Normally, kids movies have a few jokes for adults to enjoy too. There is not a single one to be found in this. Really, it was like the kids in the theater weren’t laughing either.

It only gets worse when you realize just how little the writers knew or cared about the original story. The Grinch isn’t the odd green Who that doesn’t wear clothes and has social anxiety. The meaning of the story is lost because now the Grinch loves his dog he just didn’t know how to show it. This is a children’s movie. There is supposed to be a lesson, and by changing the story and its lead character to the very core, it erases it. Now it’s not about learning to care for one another and see that people are what’s important, it’s “well leave your house and talk to people or you’re just a Grinch”, effectively destroying every college student’s social life.

There are only so many ways you can say a movie is bad. Sure, if you take your six-year-old to it they’ll probably have fun because it’s Christmas and has cute animals, but don’t take them. Kids movies don’t have to suck. Continuing to support the terrible ones is just letting production companies know they don’t have to try. Going to Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch is just going to lead to another being made about Miss Lou Who and the Grinch’s love life. Stop it before it happens.

Watch the trailer here:

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