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Little Drummer Boy's storytelling is a little weak - Pa-rum-pa-pum-pum
I'll be honest right upfront here. This one isn't my favorite. I know some who really love The Little Drummer Boy, but I'm going to have to risk your wrath.
(If you feel differently than I, please feel free to write your own hub and let me have it. Yes, CarltheCritic1291, feel free to disagree with my assessment. I simply have a couple issues from a story-teller's point of view, but I will agree that the message of the show is touching and something we should all hear more often.)
I've rated other movies harsher than this one this month. But of the movies I've selected to review, this one does receive the lowest ranking of any movie that isn't a poor sequel to a superior movie. Not that I'm saying people should definitely avoid this one. Its perspective on the classic nativity story is ... interesting.
The story follows a young boy named Aaron (Ted Eccles) living in Israel around the time of Jesus' birth. His parents were killed when a group of bandits came to rob their place. From there, Aaron vowed to hate all people and simply play his drum for his animal friends in the desert. He is picked up by a traveling scoundrel named Ben Haramed (José Ferrer) who wants to use him in his traveling show. On the way, Aaron meets up with and follows a group of Kings who are following a star.
You can probably infer much of the rest of the story.
Again, I know some really like this one, but it's a little hard for me at times.
The whole "I hate people" thing just irks me. I could see hating all Romans if a band of Romans had killed his parents. Or if it was a pack of rabid midgets, he could hate people with rabies. But when a group of bandits kills your parents, it's a bit of a jump toward hating all people and shouting at the crowd that they're all killers and thieves.
Which is too bad, really. The rest of the movie plays out well enough for me. The songs are okay, though not something that sticks with me. The animation is not Rankin/Bass's best, but sufficient to the task. I just can't get behind the main character's conflict.
And that can hurt an otherwise okay story.
I'm even willing to overlook the fact that they show the wise men arriving at the stable on the night Jesus was born. It's a kid's movie and it's okay to simplify some things.
For me, this one gets a 5 / 10.
The Little Drummer Boy is unrated, but this one should be fine for just about everyone. However, parents may want to be there with the very young for when Aaron's parents get killed in case they have questions or concerns.
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