Nov 172010
 

Unlike the 3D presentation, I found the 2D to be very fulfilling. The film though still does not entertain me much, and I don’t see myself ever wanting to re-watch it again. But for fans of the classic tale, or parents willing to sit through this with their little ones, sure, give it a shot. Just don’t be upset if you find yourself holding the same opinion I have.

 

 


A Christmas Carol (2009)

Genre(s): Animation/Fantasy/Comedy/Drama
Disney | PG – 96 min. – $39.99 | November 16, 2010

MOVIE INFO:
Directed by:
Robert Zemeckis
Writer(s):
Charles Dickens (novel); Robert Zemeckis (screenplay)
Cast:
Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Cary Elwes, Robin Wright Penn, Bob Hoskins

Theatrical Release Date: November 6, 2010

DISC INFO:
Features:
Featurettes, Deleted Scenes
Number of Discs:
2

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video:
1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Subtitles:
English SDH, French, Spanish
Codec:
MPEG-4 AVC
Regions: A

THE MOVIE – 1.5/5

ZzZzZz. I’m sorry, what? Was I napping? Oh, right, I was just watching “A Christmas Carol” and must have dozed off.

When three ghosts take penny-pinching Scrooge (voiced by Jim Carrey) on an eye-opening journey, he discovers the true meaning of Christmas. Scrooge, one whom the villagers turn away from, is a bitter old man who only cares about one thing – himself. Oh, and his money. Seven years after his partner had passed away, Scrooge is visited by three ghosts who show Scrooge his Past, the Present, and his Future. Following closely to the original Charles Dickens’s tale, fans of the original will enjoy this film.

But what if you don’t like the original? You’ll need to skip this release.

After reading many reviews on this film (both theatrically in 2009 and now in 2010), I’m a bit amazed at how many people are actually enjoying this film. I’ve seen it re-told and “re-envisioned” many times before, but this one just takes the cake for being the one that is sure to bring magic fairy dust to your eye and put you in a deep…..sleep.

What went wrong? Honestly, I’m not sure. Jim Carrey voices the character marvelously (Scrooge is even somewhat modeled after Carrey himself), but the story just seems to stumble about 20 minutes into it. Using the typical ‘zany’ nature in Disney films, they added in a lot of new things that don’t seem to work in what I would consider an adult re-telling of the story. Why not just add a talking frog or a singing bird while we’re at it?

I’m going to do something I don’t typically do and warn parents. To me, this film – someone with no children – seemed to be a bit too adult for the kids. Animals in the world are made out to be extremely dangerous and evil looking, and Scrooge himself is in a constant depression. I’m really baffled as to why Disney didn’t just, well, Disney this film up a bit.

SPECIAL FEATURES – 3/5

All features are presented in HD.

This release (2 Disc Combo Pack) includes a slip cover.

Blu-ray Disc Disc:
Behind the Carol
(Full Length of the Film) – Much like other PiP tracks, this lets you watch the film and see how it changed from the motion-capture system/animation to the film product. An optional commentary with Robert Zemeckis is also available (you can do all three at the same time).

Capturing Dickens: A Novel Retelling (15 Minutes) – An interesting look at how the motion-capture system was implemented to make the film shine.

Rounding out the Disc is Six Deleted Scenes (9 Minutes) presented in animated form (some rougher than others), On the Set with Sammi (2 Minutes) is a brief look with actor Sammi Hanratty as he puts on his green suit to be captured, Discover 3D with Timon and Pumba (3 Minutes) is a walk through on how 3D works as well as some new titles coming out and an Interactive Calendar.

Rounding out this set is a DVD (with Special Features).

VIDEO – 4.25/5

A Christmas Carol is presented in 2.35:1 on a 50GB Disc. The 2D release is an odd duck. While I found it to be a better presentation of the film over the 3D, I don’t see myself ever watching the 2D version if I have a 3D version available. But if you only plan on being a 2D household, well, you’ll be set! The film takes on a rather drab look to it, and only really gets somewhat colorful about halfway through the film with the three ghosts show up. I didn’t notice any icky DNR being used, and Disney appears to have made a dark film look good.

AUDIO – 4.75/5

Disney knocks it out of the park with an English 5.1 DTS MA Track. As usual, Disney knows what it’s doing and provides a rich and full filling 5.1 DTS MA track (identical to the 2D Blu-ray). Dialogue was crisp, and hearing the creaks of the old wood and the plopping of snow was great.


OVERALL – 2.25/5

Unlike the 3D presentation, I found the 2D to be very fulfilling. The film though still does not entertain me much, and I don’t see myself ever wanting to re-watch it again. But for fans of the classic tale, or parents willing to sit through this with their little ones, sure, give it a shot. Just don’t be upset if you find yourself holding the same opinion I have.

 

Brad Lowenberg
Published:
11/17/2010

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