"There is expected to be two more Tintin films, and that is a good thing."
I had the pleasure of reading the many Tintin comic books when I was younger, something that I recommend doing before you see this film. After hearing there was a movie planned, I was thrilled, to say the least. Like a geek, I researched everything and anything that had to do with the film, becoming more excited with every new discovery.
Then, I finally got to see the film. Was the film going to be awful? Amazing? Mediocre? I'll put it simply: I loved it.
You might know that this film is based off of the following three Tintin books; "The Crab With The Golden Claws," "The Secret Of The Unicorn," and "Red Rackham's Treasure." However, a much more accurate term would be "inspired" from these books, rather than based off of. The film only borrows scenes, locations, and characters rather than the stories and plots of each. This isn't really a bad thing though, because it's nice to get to expereince a new, if familiar, adventure.
When the film opens, the audience is treated to a 3 minute title sequence, portraying scenes from Tintin books, as well as showing off a fine musical theme by John Williams, whose musical talent is consistent throughout the film. In fact, it's one of my favorite film scores.
Once the actual film starts, we see Tintin in a flea market-like surrounding. This scene not only sets up the film, but does a fine job of displaying some of the greatest animation I've ever seen. It looks absolutely gorgeous, and quite life-like. The style choice is ingenious; putting cartoonish characters in a life-like setting. It's not unlike what other animation studios have done, but it's much more exaggerated in this film, and much more detailed.
The characters are portrayed faithfully. All the characters look like they do in the book, and the voice actors have been selected excellently. Tintin is exactly as I imagined him to be, the Thompson twins are hilarious, and all the other characters have been given a fine treatement as well. Even Bianca Castifore has a short scene.
I do have a few complaints regarding the character of Captian Haddock, however. In the book, he is portrayed as cranky, and usually drunk. In the film, he's portrayed as sad, stupid, occassionaly cheerful, and usually drunk. This portrayal is not a bad one, it's just not very faithful to the books. Also, Professor Calculus is omitted from the film, but he doesn't really belong in this film anyway. However, based on what I've heard the sequel is going to be about, Calculus will probably be added to the cast.
Also, for those who are curious, Snowy does not "think" as he does in the books, he's no different than any normal dog.
Me and the friends that I saw the film with, have all read the books, and it was very rewarding when watching the film. There are literally DOZENS of references, cameos, and easter eggs from the Tintin books. From characters walking in the background, to props, to posters, to names, to buildings, it doesn't end! There is actually a refrence to almost EVERY book in the series.
There are some excellent chase scenes, some exciting fight scenes, and some thrilling escape scenes. I can't remember I had so much fun at the theater. The film was also, quite hilarious, though there was some junevile humor that I didn't appreciate.
Out of a lot of praise, I do have some complaints. I have already expressed my feelings toward the change of Captian Haddock, but I do have some other things to point out as well. For one, the movie didn't have much of a plot. It felt more like the characters were trying to get from point A to point B, without much thought about what to do when they get there. Also, the film felt somewhat non-conclusive, but I feel that this was done intentionally for the sequels.
There was some cheesy dialogue (the last two lines spoken by Tintin and Haddock are ridiculously hammy), and Tintin just cannot say "Great Snakes!" without sounding forced.
I do love this film, I didn't want it to end. I am looking forward to the sequels, more so than any other film, and I have great anticipations for what Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg plan to do with the next Tintin.