DVD Review: The Adventures of Tintin

I haven't seen a movie I both really liked and really disliked in ages.  Because there are several of each and I don't want to confuse you here's my list of pros and cons for The Adventures of Tintin

1.  I loved the visual style - and I hated previous incarnations of this kind of motion capture animation (The Polar Express is just creepy).  Perhaps it was just the first DVD I watched on my Blu-ray player, but I have trouble believing it would improve a lowly DVD that much.  The style of animation has improved enormously.  I really enjoyed the animation and I can see how it would have been very striking in 3D.

2.  I loved the self-referential humor.  Tintin was almost aware he is an iconic character.  That tongue in cheek nod to his original graphic novel status was played well throughout.

3.  His relationship with his dog, Snowy, was also well played for both laughs and character development.  As good an actor as the dog from The Artist, even if he was animated.

4. The voice work was particularly well done.  Other than Jaime Bell as Tintin, I could actively identify anyone, but really enjoyed them all.  Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost all have voices I would have found familiar, but they did a good job diving into their characters and leaving their acting on the table.

1.  I find a children's book character (it was rated PG) that is having long conversations about how hard it would be to be sober and what it will take to have him overcome his dependence on alcohol particularly offputting in this context.  Captain Haddock, who Tintin was trying to save/help on the adventure was an alcoholic.  He was complaining when they walked through the desert that he'd run out of booze.  Is that really what needed to happen in a children's story?

2. This story, for all it's twists and turns, historical and political fighting, and over the top oddities was really dull.  They kept losing my attention.

3. Mostly those two.


  1. I'm pretty much with you on this. I went in expecting to be annoyed by the visual style and like the story. I came out disliking the story and loving the visual style. The overall story was dull and then was filled with random slapstick, goofball moments. And then the action got way too ridiculous (the battling cranes sequence, anyone?).

  2. I was surprised how much I really enjoyed the visual. I just wanted the dialogue if not the story to live up to it. I needed one more sympathetic character or something. Odd.

  3. Slander! All those plus points and those mere two points completely knocked it down! I have watched the film at least 5 times now and certain sequences play so well - snowy chasing after tintin to the docks, the chase in bagghar, etc. These are brilliant sequences! The dullness I didn't pick up - but I worry that (a) it may be your MTV sensibilities (he he) and (b) that once you know the story, and therefore the pace, you can get swept up in it more. A rewatch perhaps...?

    1. Simon - I sense I will rewatch it for exactly that reason. For whatever reason, it didn't engage my inner child. Since I loved Tintin growing up, I'm surprised. Still don't think I'll like the drunk as a main character.

  4. I liked this one a lot. Yea, it has some narrative weaknesses, for sure, but the visual filmmaking is just so magnificent. While I haven't liked all the films he's produced in this time, I think this demonstrates that Spielberg is still on top of his game, able to craft a visually compelling sequence of events.

    Maybe I just was too won over by how great it all ran together, but I thought this was surprisingly fantastic.


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