‘Tintin’ fans eagerly awat film’s theatrical release


The animated version of the Belgium comic book features an all-star vocal cast.

By By Bhaavya Srivastava, News Production Editor

 People from all over the world have grown up reading The Adventures of Tintin, a series of comic books written by late Belgian artist Hergé, featuring the clever boy reporter, Tintin, and his loyal and adept dog, Snowy.

 Although the series is hugely popular in Europe, it never gained a large following in the US. However, the upcoming movie, due to be released in the US on Dec. 21, directed by Steven Spielberg and produced by Peter Jackson, hopes to change that trend.

 The Adventures of Tintinis an engaging movie, full of suspense, action and humor. Based on three of the original comic books, The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure, the movie combines the plots of all three to produce a visually appealing adaptation, which stays mostly faithful to the way Hergé portrayed his characters.

The movie starts off with Tintin (Jamie Bell, Billy Elliot) and Snowy buying an old model of a ship, the Unicorn, from a flea market. The purchase attracts the attention of the sinister Ivan Ivanovitch Sakharine (Daniel Craig, Casino Royale), who immediately tries to buy it from Tintin. Upon Tintin’s refusal, he is later kidnapped by Sakharine’s accomplices and imprisoned on a ship.

After he manages to escape, Tintin meets the liveliest character of the movie, Captain Haddock (Andy Serkis, The Lord of the Rings), and together they embark on a hunt for the treasure of the original Unicorn, battling Sakharine and his lackeys along the way.

The movie uses motion-capture animation to bring Hergé’s world to life, including some beautifully animated sequences where the action is as good as real. The performances of the actors are equally good, although the dialogue is stilted and awkward at times. Bell does an admirable job as Tintin; Serkis is loud and adds comic relief as Captain Haddock, while Craig manages to bring Sakharine’s evil nature to the forefront.

The plot does diverge often from those of the books — Sakharine was never the antagonist in the books — while other supporting characters were added and removed. Many elements of the original books are done away with completely in order to make the movie shorter and smoother. Avid fans will also notice inaccuracies in the leading characters: for instance, Captain Haddock is of Scottish descent; however, he speaks with a distinctly Eastern European accent.

Plot discrepancies and character changes aside, the movie is well paced and does not linger too long at any one point, and is supplemented by a great soundtrack. In the end, the movie is a fun and entertaining watch for everyone, from long-time Tintin fans to people who are discovering the comics and Tintin’s world for the first time.