Monday, March 9, 2009

Variety likes Michael Landon Jr.'s Velveteen Rabbit

Joe Leydon at Variety reviewed and rather liked Michael Landon Jr.'s The Velveteen Rabbit.  He doesn't get specific about how it deviates from the book, but he implies that the ending might not be as bittersweet as the classic novel.   He says that it is a great small kids movie, which hopefully means it has a bit more energy than a typical Landon Jr. snooze-fest.  He describes the animation as "70s after-school special," which looks accurate.  It might even be a fun retro-style look if audiences can get past the lower quality of the animation.  I have to give great credit for them not going with super-cheap CGI.  Every time I happen to catch a glimpse of the CGI Mickey Mouse show for small kids I die a little inside. 

To give you an idea of Leydon's position, he has previously reviewed, and gave a mixed review to Fireproof.  I had to go back a while to find another movie he reviewed that I'd seen, but he liked Forgetting Sarah Marshall not quite as much as I did.  I can't figure out if his lack of mention of the best part of the movie is because he didn't like it or because he's dodging "spoiler" attacks. 

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Awakenpictures said...

Is it that you think of ML, Jr's film as snoozers because they're chick flicks or is it something else?

I've watched some of his films and thought they were good. A lot of women love his Love Come Softly films.

I'm curious about it because they do pretty well as TV movies that might succeed along with Little House on the Prairie type shows.

Tiredofsteam said...

They are 'snoozers' because they are chick flicks. yes. also, they are lumped in with 'Little House on the Prairie-type shows', ie. snoozers.

I think one of his films might be next on the docket to review!

jonnyflash said...

I'm probably a little too hard on him, because I've only actually seen 1 MLJ film, The Last Sin Eater. But boy, was it a doozy. Awful produciton values, boring as all get out, characters I loathed and the only "Christian" in the film is a guy who spouts disjointed Bible verses at random, but somehow his influence converts a whole town of pagan cult-members.

And Don, re: Little House on the Prarie, I guess we can't knock MLJ on following in his father's footsteps. Maybe he'll do a Highway to Heaven inspired film soon.

Awakenpictures said...

I know you guys would probably prefer a time travel movie where a dude does battle with a Sin Eater and there's a major fight scene and then he blasts out of there in a rocket ship (actually - I dig films like that myself :) ) - but my wife and I actually liked the Last Sin Eater. It wasn't perfect, but I thought the film wasn't so bad. The interesting thing about the film is that there were "Sin eaters" historically and that makes for an interesting story.