Monday, August 22, 2011

Review of Tale of Despereaux

The Tale of Despereaux is the story of a brave little mouse who changes the whole kingdom of Dor. Dor is famous for its soups; it even has a day dedicated just to soup. One tragic Soup Day, a rat disembarks from a ship seeking adventure. Roscuro, the rat, follows the enchanting smell of soup right to the palace, where the royal family is about to enjoy their specially made soup. Unfortunately, Roscuro tumbles into the Queen's soup, causing her to panic, faint, and drown in her soup. The whole castle is suddenly in upheaval. Roscuro is chased by the king's knights, but he gets away.

The king, in grief and anger, bans soup and rats from the Kingdom of Dor. Roscuro is taken away from light, food, and happiness as he is forced to live in Ratworld, an underground town of terrible rats.

In enters Despereaux, a little mouse, even in mice standards, who refuses to be afraid, much to the people of Mouseworld's dismay. Unlike other mice, he isn't timid and loves to read books instead of eating them. When reading a book, he decides he will become a hero and save a princess. Thus, the adventure begins...

I enjoyed how different this movie is. The voice actors were excellent (Matthew Broderick, Emma Watson, and Dustin Hoffman are all part of the cast) The plot is very detailed, with numerous subplots. The use of a narrator (Sigourney Weaver) adds beautifully to the story with moral tidbits. The animation is really well done.

This movie is unlike anything I've ever seen. For a children's movie, it seems a bit too deep. The morals are strong, and I appreciate that. Such themes include forgiveness, value of other people, and the error of dark ways. I did watch the movie with a small child who actually enjoys the movie very much, but it seemed to have some elements that may be hard for a little one to understand. A secondary character "dies", which absolutely made me, yes, me sad. In short, the thematic elements may be too scary or too much to handle.

Overall, I was absolutely enchanted by this movie. I'd say it's a great movie for kids at heart. 

I rate this movie four out of five stars.


1 comment:

Marlena Cassidy said...

The Tale of Despereaux was one of my favorite movies when I saw it. And I think it handled heavy emotion fairly well. It was tough to watch some scenes but there was always something else to offset it or to make it better. It had a good balance.

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