Title: The Adventures of Tintin
Year: 2011
Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure
Play time: 
Director: Steven Spielberg
Screenwriters: Steven Moffat
Starring: Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig

Was taken aback by how straightforward this is – 109 minutes of straight-up action-adventure, Indiana Jones-style, gorgeously rendered in mo-capped 3D (which sure has come a long way, baby, since The Polar Express) and staged with typical brio and top-notch craftsmanship by Spielberg. But more so than even Indy, Tintin is monomaniacal about its gleeful  treasure-hunt plot: there is no set-up, no subplots, and any jokes seem incidental rather than constructed. The result is a film that is tremendously energetic and fun, with a rollicking sense of play Spielberg hasn’t mustered since the opening sequence of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, but also one that’s not particularly memorable: I was never for a second bored, but am hard-pressed to come up with a highlight, if that makes sense. I do wonder what Tintin will play like to someone familiar with the (apparently tremendously popular) source material, because to me it seemed like a weird mix of the generic (in the grand scheme) and the inspired (in the particulars); Tintin himself seems oddly robotic, apparently motivated only by a general hunger for truth and “getting the story,” though the fact that he’s a reporter plays into the plot not at all. The supporting characters are barely more distinctive, though I did like Interpol agents Thomson and Thompson, as well as the drunken ne’er-do-well sea captain with whom Tintin teams up. Almost all the fun is in the way the film moves, from scene to scene and shot to shot, relentless and propulsive and inventive. It’s pure, giddy cinematic joy from the man who might know the most about it.


Eugene Novikov

Seeking in movies meaning and reflection in real-time. On the look out for biography, thriller & drama best pieces.

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