Dreamworks are rising up in my esteem lately. With the excellent How To Train Your Dragon a couple of years back, and me not hating Kung Fu Panda 2, or even Madagascar 3, they've surprised me again with Rise Of The Guardians.
The movie follows Jack Frost, the winter spirit who has existed for more than 300 years without a purpose. After another day of covering everything in snow and ice, he finds himself nominated by The Man In The Moon to join the ranks of the legendary Guardians of children, consisting of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and the Sandman. The re-emergence of the Bogeyman has threatened to envelop the world's children in fear, quashing their beliefs, and thus weakening the powers, of the Guardians. It's up to Jack Frost and his new allies to keep the children's beliefs alive, and use their powers to put a stop to the Bogeyman once and for all.
Rise Of The Guardians certainly has an interesting premise, with the interconnecting lairs and responsibilities of the Guardians, and the belief system that provides them with powers and even visibility. No matter how much of a mishmash all the different characters seem to be, the plot does a very good job of bringing them together into a very effective team. Frost, sand, and various other powers are flung around during some quite spectacular battle scenes, it seems almost like an Avengers for kids (well, little kids).
The Guardians themselves are all fantastic. The inexplicably Russian Santa chortles along with his dual swords, the Easter Bunny is distinctly Australian, wielding a deadly boomerang and dry humour, and even the Sandman has oodles of character, despite the fact that he never talks. There are some great voices behind the Guardians, and the Bogeyman, and they all do a fantastic job at portraying the uniqueness of their characters and the camaraderie of the group.
Rise Of The Guardians is a fantastic kids movie. It looks beautiful, has a great cast of characters, and some quite intense fight scenes that really kept my attention throughout. I'll definitely be watching it again.
My rating: 5/5