Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch

The iconic curmudgeon tries to steal Christmas from Whoville in 'Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch'


Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch ★ 1/2

In a perfect world, films would only be remade when there’s room for improvement. Of course, when it comes to Hollywood, this is hardly ever the case. Money rules all. Remember this when you trot your little ones off to see the third incarnation of Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas, an illustrated children’s book from 1957 that was first adapted into an animated special for television in 1966. This undisputed holiday classic, directed by peerless animator Chuck Jones (creator of Road Runner, Wile E. Coyote, Marvin the Martian and more), captured the spirit of Dr. Seuss’ beloved book and then some—aided immeasurably by a droll vocal performance by none other than Frankenstein’s Monster himself, Boris Karloff, who pulled double duty as the narrator of the fleet, 26-minute-long special, as well as the voice of the Grinch. This didn’t stop Ron Howard from directing an overblown live-action version in 2000 that featured rubber-faced comedian Jim Carrey (his face covered in actual rubber) prancing about in a putrid adaptation that accomplished far less with four times the screen time. Now, Illumination (creator of the Minions) has gone the computer animation route. This charmless, 90-minute concoction co-directed by Yarrow Cheney (The Secret Life of Pets) features a Pharrell Williams narration and Benedict Cumberbatch as a surprisingly toothless Grinch—both do little except remind you how great Karloff was. (At Assembly Row, Boston Common, Fenway, Seaport, South Bay and in the suburbs.)

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