I watched the scariest shit this weekend.
That's how my face was during the entire duration of . . .
It wasn't the many instances of peril that the characters faced that had me so ill-at-ease . . .
. . . it was the characters' actual faces. I mean, look at them:
When The Polar Express was released last year, a lot of the reviews focused on this very point. With good reason! It's hard to pay attention to anything else when you're startled every two minutes by some matte humanoid's creepily realistic expressions. The movie is, at best, gorgeous torture, right down to the closing credits, over which a Josh Groban song plays. Ed Gonazlez's review contains the best summary the action sequences that I've read: "at turns suggests an Olympic-style luge event or a trip through an especially crowded FAO Schwartz."
Anyway, back to the ugly:
As though time hasn't been cruel enough to Tom Hanks!
I can't believe he signed off on that!
Not even Santa could escape the ugly stick.
Seriously, Billy Bob Thornton has nothing on him.
The elves are scary . . .
. . . the snowman's scary . . .
. . . and just when you think it can't get any scarier, Steven Tyler shows up as an elf:
As you can tell from the Hanks and Tyler characters, the movie's characters were rendered using detailed scans of human models. Clearly, the technology has yet to be perfected. Some $165 million was put into this movie. Director Robert Zemeckis was ripped off.
Watching these unlikeable characters interact is like watching cosmetically corrected corpses interact.
They waaaaannnntttt your soooooouuuuulllllllllll.
If only the script were as subversive as the flawed character design. It's not. The moral is something like: if you have faith in Jesus (for what is Santa Claus but Jesus with training wheels on?), your presents will work properly. Merry Gift Day!
One more dash of ugly:
I really hope Hanks, Zemeckis and everyone else involved got smacked upside the head with a bag of coal last Christmas. If not, I'll be happy to do the job this time around.