Quick Thoughts On The Tale Of Despereaux

Tale-Despereaux-Review.jpgOnce again, this isn’t a full The Tale Of Despereaux review since it’s a little late, but I wanted to at least give you guys my quick thoughts on the film.

First of all I was a bit taken aback when the opening credits rolled and I saw the names that were voicing the film. People like Matthew Broderick, Dustin Hoffman, Emma Watson, Sigourney Weaver, Christopher Lloyd, Frank Langella, Robbie Coltrane, Stanley Tucci, William H. Macy, Kevin Kline, and Tracey Ullman. I was a bit surprised that in the marketing they didn’t make more noise about the cast. This then also lead me to shake my head at the pointlessness of getting big named actors to do voices in animated films. They’re just not needed, and often actually take away from the film.

The Tale of Despereaux starts off very well. The first 30 minutes or so are just magical with some beautiful storytelling and wonderful narration. Despereaux himself is very cute and the simplicity is just beautiful.

The movie also has a wonderful message, especially for kids. The premise is that often (not all the time) people do evil things out of hurt and the resentment that comes from being hurt or wronged. At the same time, the powerful thing to counteract that isn’t might or a sword, but rather acts of kindness or forgiveness. I loved that idea, and on this level I think it’s probably the best “message” in a kids movie I’ve ever seen.

The problem is, although The Tale Of Despereaux had a wonderful message, it was still a sloppy movie. After the first 30 minutes the film began to feel convoluted. Seemingly random characters thrown into the mix who are then given significant roles to play in the story without every really letting the audience feel why they are significant. Simple themes turned into muddled messages and by the end you’re not really sure why what’s happening it actually happening.

Another problem I had with the movie was Matthew Broderick doing the voice of the young little mouse. All I heard was the voice of a 46 year old man and it was distracting to me everytime Despereaux spoke. Someone tell me again why they needed a named Hollywood actor whose face would never be seen to do the voice of a little animate mouse?

The Tale of Despereaux isn’t a “bad” movie. It just isn’t really worth going to see. Started off well, then sort of fell apart.

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3 thoughts on “Quick Thoughts On The Tale Of Despereaux

  1. I agree with the quick review. I love modern animated films, but Despereaux seemed so poorly made on the level of plot and story line. Like all modern animations the artistic talent was there, but the story lacked power and was a mishap of scenes that never came together. Far too much narration and no compelling story.

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