THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN
By Gary Murray
Starring the voice talents of Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig and Simon Pegg
Written by Steven Moffat and Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish
Based on the comic by Herge
Directed by Steven Spielberg
Running time 107 min
MPAA Rating PG
Selig Film Rating FULL PRICE
I had never heard of Tintin before this year. The foreign comic by Remi Herge was something that never popped up on my radar. But, thankfully, it was on the screen of the world’s greatest film-maker Steven Spielberg. And under his charge, we get one of the most action-packed movies of the year.
The film is set up more along the lines of an old style serial. After a series of 2-D animations of previous adventures, this chapter starts. Our reporter Tintin buys a model ship, the Unicorn, during an excursion in town. Almost instantly, a Mr Sakharine is eager to buy the ship from the young man. When Tintin refuses, things take a dark turn and eventually Tintin is kidnapped. Along with his dog Snowy, the two have to deal with a crew in revolt and a drunken sea captain Haddock.
It seems that the model ship holds a clue to a giant pirate horde and different parties want the map that will lead them to the treasure. The ship contains a clue to the whereabouts of the loot. There are also references that Haddock knows a secret to the treasure, a secret that this bumbling seafarer has no clue about.
Tintin and Haddock along with Snowy join forces to follow the clues and fight the bad guys in order to find the treasure. Along the way, they deal with a Moroccan sheikh. And like all good serial adventures, the film ends on a high note suggesting that the next chapter will have even more thrills.
This film could never have been told live action. The way the camera moves and zooms around, up and down and all around, becomes a breath-taking experience. There are scenes that flow like a roller coaster, bobbing and weaving every direction at once while never losing track of the basics of storytelling. Shots only dreamed of in the live action world are common place in the world of Tintin.
Spielberg shows his mastery of this newest form of storytelling while delivering a film that has an old time feel. This movie reminds one of the films that made Steven Spielberg a worldwide, household name. It has all the joy of his greatest hits while still being in the new idiom of computer generated cinema.
The 3D in The Adventures of Tintin is a feat to behold. I have always been of the opinion that animated 3D works better than traditional camera work and Tintin shows just how perfect the image can be manipulated. There are few 3D films worth the added expensive at the box office and this one is definitely worth the extra money.
The Adventures of Tintin is the best animated film of 2010 and one of the best films of the year. It is a film that I will own when it comes out on DVD. It is an adventure in the style of Indiana Jones with all the bells and whistles of very modern cinema. This is one adventure not to be missed.