The animated movie is based on a popular series of comic books written in the 1940’s. This movie, specifically, based on The Secret of the Unicorn, created in 1943, is directed by Stephen Spielberg, and is the first animated film he has directed. The film won for Best Animated Featured Film at the Golden Globes.
The movie is a high adventure film featuring Tin Tin, a reporter, and his loyal and adorable terrier Snowy, along with Haddock, a drunken ship captain, in search of missing scrolls that will lead to a buried treasure. Action on the high seas, the Moroccan desert and around Europe kept young audience members (myself included) on the edge of their seats. The 3-D effect, which is not available in all theaters, was awesome. Some have referred to the movie as “Indiana Jones for Kids.”
The animation was extremely life-like, and I often forgot I was watching a cartoon. From the hair and sweat on the characters to Snowy’s cat-chasing antics, it was so much more life-like than most animated films I’ve seen recently. What repeatedly brought me back to reality was the noses on many of the characters. Amplified versions of schnozes were humorous and offed insight into the personas of their characters.
My favorite character, naturally, was Snowy, Tin Tin’s little white fox terrier. Loyal, brave and smart, Snowy also shows a vulnerable side. I found myself rooting for the pooch as much as I did for Tin Tin.
IMHO, the film, at 107 minutes, lasted about 20 minutes too long, with gratuitous swashbuckling for the sake of added excitement. The average age of the audience was around 4-8, (not including parents) and I noticed several kids becoming restless in the last half-hour. Regardless, I highly recommend this film for families. If you do go see it in theaters, make sure to see it in 3-D. It’s worth the extra $$.