“The Nutcracker and the Four Realms”

MOVIE REVIEW: “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” stars Mackenzie Foy (Interstellar, The Conjuring), Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game, Begin Again), Jayden Fowora-Knight (Ready Player One, Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle), Helen Mirren (The Queen, Monsters University), Richard E. Grant (Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker, Gosford Park), Eugenio Derbez (Instructions Not Included, Overboard [2018]), Omid Djalili (The Mummy [1999], Gladiator), Jack Whitehall (Jungle Cruise, Bad Education [TV series]), Matthew Macfadyen (Pride & Prejudice [2005], Frost/Nixon), Ellie Bamber (Nocturnal Animals, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies), Tom Sweet (Where Hands Touch, The Drifters), and Morgan Freeman (The Shawshank Redemption, The Dark Knight). It is directed by Lasse Hallström (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, Dear John) and Joe Johnston (Captain America: The First Avenger, October Sky), with the screenplay being written by Ashleigh Powell (The Paper Magician, Somacell).

When a young girl named Clara (Foy) is suddenly transported to another world of sugar plums, nutcracker soldiers, and rats, she must unite the kingdom of four relams before it falls into tyranny.

Nothing screams Christmas like the Nutcracker ballet. And better yet, Disney has re-envisioned it as a feature film, with all the CGI you could ever ask for!

Whatever happened to this movie? I remember some promotions for it, but it kind of slipped through the cracks. I guess that’s the fate for most original Disney pictures. Audiences can’t seem to gravitate to one-off movies, let alone ones that involve nutcracker soldiers and rats.

“The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” really gives off an “Alice and Wonderland” vibe. Huge CGI landscapes, oddball characters, and a kingdom “worth restoring.” It’s also set around the same period in the real world, which I am a fan of (because who doesn’t like Victorian era atmosphere?). If there’s anything this movie can tout around, it’s the high quality production design. In its practical state, “Nutcracker” is a beautiful film, with wonderful wardrobe, soothing colors, and awesome cinematography. The visual effects are fairly solid as well, but there are certainly moments of fake-ness (gotta love a good blurred line around your characters to mask the backplate).

As for the story, it plays as you would expect it to. There’s some misdirection that is laid within the script, but even a kid could spot it a mile away. It’s an innocent tale that’s to the point, never really wasting a moment but at the same time not giving much for me to grapple to. Clara’s dilemma and eventual realization is kind of phoned in; pretty forced and not really set up. I understand it’s a Disney movie for kids, but when your message you want to give is “you’ve got all you need inside of you,” at least give us more to earn it. When Clara comes to this point it more so just… happens. I rolled my eyes. “Okay.”

There’s plenty in this to keep the family entertained. The look of it all is pretty impressive, but that’s what you would expect from a big budgeted Disney picture. Where it matters most is the story, which doesn’t do too much to stand out. The performances are pretty good, and the movie has quite a few big names, but that doesn’t do much to give this tale more dimension.

“The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” is an alright winter flick that should entertain the kiddos. It’s a beautiful looking movie that’s neat to watch in and of itself, but like I said, the story doesn’t make too much of an effort to be different. If you want to play something in the background this holiday season, I’d say it’s a harmless choice. FINAL SCORE: 68%= Burnt Popcorn

Here is the trailer:

One response to ““The Nutcracker and the Four Realms”

  1. Pingback: November Movie Rankings | Juicy Reviews·

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