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"The Grinch" Movie Review

Updated on December 25, 2021
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Nathan is a film critic and aspiring author with a true passion for the film industry who hopes his writings will help launch his career.

The story of How the Grinch Stole Christmas has been around since 1957. First published as a book then made into a cartoon in 1966, The Grinch has been a beloved tale for children and adults alike. While this adaptation has more humor and is more glammed up for the kids, it doesn't lose the heart that made the other adaptations so special, nor does it forget to leave a positive and powerful message for its viewers.

For those that don't know (where have you been?), The Grinch is the story of Mr. Grinch, a wayward and lonely Who who despises Christmastime. After 50-odd years of putting up with the Whos, the Grinch decides to stop Christmas from coming by stealing all their decorations and gifts.

I was surprised to find that I got pretty emotional in a few points during the film. I honestly figured that it would be dumbed down and more silly than meaningful. I've never been happier to be so wrong. The Grinch was absolutely wonderful and provided some emotional kicks in the arse that everyone needs right now. The impact of the film was heard right there in the theater. A mom had brought her daughter to see it. They were sitting directly behind me. When Cindy Lou thanks her mom Donna Lou for how hard she works to provide for her and her brothers, Donna told Cindy that she was the greatest gift a Who could ask for. Cindy followed up with "I love you, mom". Immediately, the girl behind me said "I love you, mom". My eyes immediately filled with tears. I don't know if it was more from the movie or the precious child behind me. Maybe it was a little of both. Either way, this film started making a difference in lives immediately.

As I mentioned earlier, this adaptation was a bit glammed up for younger audiences and a few story points were changed, such as there actually being a reindeer, Grinch being a tech genius, Grinch's backstory, and also Grinch being a loving pet owner. I was more than fine with these changes. In fact, I think it added more depth to the character and made you really understand why he is the way he is. The only other time we had an explanation as to why the Grinch is so grinchy was in the Jim Carrey live adaptation. We see that he was accidentally delivered to two sisters, was bullied as a kid, and the kid who bullied him grew up to be the Mayor of Whoville. Sure, that's a good explanation and I enjoyed Carrey's film. Benedict Cumberbatch's Grinch, however, has a much simpler and even more emotional reason behind his actions. The book never gave the Grinch a backstory, so it really is open to multiple interpretations. There's nothing wrong with giving a multi-generational character a little leeway.

In conclusion, I loved this adaptation just as much as the previous two. It was perfect in almost every way and I'd certainly go see it multiple times. I give the film a 4 out of 4.

© 2018 Nathan Jasper


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