No matter how it turns out to be, I want this franchise to continue and hopefully will, eventually, filmed the rest of the adventures. As it turns out, “The Adventures of Tintin,” when it’s amazing, it’s amazing. One of the action sequences beats the hell out of everything that I’ve seen so far this year. Yes, it was animated, so it’s probably more feasible to pull through than if it was done with real actors and real props. But, I was completely breathless, and muttered audibly, “wow.” And for someone who treated silence during cinema religiously, that is a great deal.
Based primarily on “The Secret of the Unicorn,” (as far as I know, not the first book in the series, either by published date or by the adventures’ chronological order but, my memories are a bit rusty) the movie follows an adventure of a young, curious journalist, Tintin, along with his faithful companion, Snowy, as he sort of stumbled into a model of a warship, Unicorn. The model held a secret, and quickly propels Tintin to the sea, to the air, and through the desert in order to unravel a secret that only a certain family could be deemed worthy to uncover. This movie is also the first time Tintin met with his longtime partner, Captain Haddock, although I remembered that in the book, their meeting was in another adventure altogether.
Growing up, Tintin was a luxury to me. Back then (Indonesia, the 90s), it was more expensive (almost twice the price) than any other comics. I’ve probably had only two or three volumes of it and the rest, I had to read in a public library. And I read them, whenever I had a chance, over and over again. Which is why, the movie’s opening sequence bought a smile to my face as it features faces, artifacts, and events from all the books in the series. That is a smell of nostalgia there and it’s only meaningful if you had a fond memory of them. If you hadn’t, I sincerely pity you. The movie’s opening sequence had easily won me over. Of course, “The Adventures of Tintin” was republished in Indonesia not too long ago, but just like any other comics that I grew up with and has been republished since, it doesn’t have that same feeling, the translators simply does it wrong.
Anyway, like I’ve said, the action sequences were Amazing. With a capital “A.” Not necessarily plausible, but who cares? It’s fun, and the level of animation details are simply stunning, it’s worth every damn dime to watch it again over a glorious High Definition. However, the movie itself takes rather too long to build, that I think will be this movie’s achilles’ heel for many. I was slightly disappointed with Andy Serkis’ portrayal of Captain Haddock but that’s more because after all that he has done in motion captures, my expectations are probably too high. That, and given the fact that I had my own visual imagination of how Captain Haddock is supposed to be fortified by years and years of childhood. And that vision doesn’t really sync in line with what Mr.Spielberg’s had in mind. Obviously, Mr.Spielberg pulls it through, and I’m just a whiny films critic wannabe.
But most disappointing is Jamie Bell as the titular character. After the initial shock of seeing him for the very first time, he failed to gives any lasting impression. His lines’ deliveries are lacking that certain something that makes a character spark, and I couldn’t make myself cared about him anymore than necessary. The rest of the characters are unfortunately doesn’t fare much too well. Beyond the initial amazement of recognition and then to animation’s details, they are hardly, if ever, picking up my interest more than necessary.
All in all, as animation film goes, it’s simply amazing. An adventure movie done right (especially with the young boys demography, in age or in heart), to which I had a small doubt that adventure movie’s fans would be enjoying immensely. One of the action sequence is so beautifully crafted that it was probably the best action pieces setting I’ve seen this year. However, as a long time fan, and probably because Tintin has a significant amount of nostalgia to yours truly here, I might asking too much and I had a bit of trouble in accepting Tintin depicted in one dimension higher that what I used to.
One more thing, if you liked the adventures of Indiana Jones (excluding the fourth movie, obviously), you’ll most likely liked this film as well.