So my girlfriend and I were sitting in Chipotle after an appointment I had, when she decides to tell me that she wants to see ‘Paddington’.
There were many movies playing that I wanted to see. A couple being ‘American Sniper’ and ‘Selma’. Odds are, I probably won’t get around to seeing those until they hit Blu-Ray.
I caved, and the two of us ended up getting tickets for this bear movie. We get inside the theater and lo and behold, the place was PACKED!
We had no idea this was going to be so popular. I remember some of the Paddington stories that my parents used to read to me but I didn’t know how relevant the character was in today’s world.
Now I can tell you after viewing this, that Paddington Bear should be relevant.
This movie was fantastic. Walking into a children’s movie can always be a scary thing. In my experience, there are two kinds of kids’ movies. One that is 100% for kids, and another where adults can get just as much (or more) enjoyment out of it that the kids do. This was definitely the latter.
There were actually multiple occasions where I laughed out loud for this. My favorite being the escalator scene, where Paddington takes the signs a bit too literally.
The casting was really good and it was cool to see many familiar European actors involved in this. Nicole Kidman (though Australian) plays the villain, and at first I thought she was going to be so cheesy and bad, mostly because of her appearance and style. I was half right, but her character was actually kind of funny and she pulled off playing a cheesy/cartoonish movie villain pretty well.
Ben Whishaw voiced Paddington himself. Who is that? Well he’s the new ‘Q’ that we will be very used to seeing in (hopefully) many James Bond movies to come. He was one of my favorite parts of ‘Skyfall’ as I felt he really brought something new to the ‘Q’ character. His calm and light sounding voice was absolutely perfect for Paddington. He always sounded so innocent, even though all of these terrible things kept happening while he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
My only minor nitpick with the movie was that it took me a little while to totally understand the fact that the characters (the people) were accustomed to talking bears already. It seemed weird and it was really just an execution issue. But once that was made clear to me, the rest of the movie was easier to enjoy.
I’ll give ‘Paddington’ a B+. The nitpick I just mentioned was on my mind for about 1/3 of the movie. But other that that, this is a really great family movie that I strongly recommend for all ages.