After a rather sleepless night with Master C on Saturday night Mr C and I decided that he would instead take Little Miss C into London on Sunday morning to see an advance screening of The Boxtrolls – the new animated family title from Universal instead of me. They don’t often get to go somewhere just the two of them so it was a great opportunity for some quality father-daughter time.
The Boxtrolls is the story of a group of box wearing trolls (much as the film’s title suggests) who all live under the town of Cheesebridge. They bring up an orphaned human boy called Eggs (named after the box he’s in!) and all appears fine until the villain of the piece, Snatcher, decides he wants to catch all the Boxtrolls. Eggs becomes friends with Winnie, the daughter of the Council leader, and realises that it’s up to him to save his Boxtroll family. Here’s what Mr C had thought of it.
3 stars out of 5A quirky, stylish, family film, with a surprising amount for adults. It stands up for itself amongst strong competition in the genre over recent years, but the bar has been well raised by Pixar and others and it doesn’t scale the giddy heights. Perhaps most notable is the hand-crafted grotesque style of the world, comparable to Tim Burton’s creations. The villain, Snatcher steals the show, performance and animated-character-wise – a wonderful fiend, but a couple of strange casting decisions intruded into my consciousness, breaking the spell. The female lead sounded far too old for the young girl she was playing and Richard Ayoade (who in general I think is great) just made me think of Moss from the IT Crowd, and that aside I felt the voice didn’t feel right on the character.This was the first 3D film I’d seen and I was very glad to find that it merely enhanced the experience without being a distraction. On this experience, given the choice between 3D or not, for any given film, I’d go for 3D though I could well imagine it being overdone in other films. My four year old daughter refused to wear the glasses however because she found the film scary at times (and in overall concept) and didn’t want it to “be more real”. Thankfully, for the most part it was watchable without the glasses, for a young’un anyway, with further away things looking a bit fuzzy. As is typical with her, having cowered through the whole thing and even demanded to go home before it started, she then yammered on about it for the rest of the day. However she says it’s not as good as Frozen or Despicable Me!
The Boxtrolls is on release in UK cinemas on 12th September 2014.