The Grinch review

My opinion right after watching the movie

My opinion right after watching this movie is that it’s one of the most simplistic movies I have EVER seen in my life. The pacing is so damn slow, and while the message is nice and a good message, they barely put any effort to make it substantial, even for an Illumination film. I have very little opinion on anything in this film, other than how completely lazy it was. At least they didn’t completely flanderize and slap Dr. Seuss in the face, like they did with The Lorax.


There really isn’t much to discuss in regards to the production of the film. It was announced in 2013 that they were going to adapt The Grinch, and the animation took place in France, like essentially all of Illumination’s work.


The film starts with everyone in Whoville excited for Christmas, with the exception of The Grinch (Benedict Cumberbatch), who hates Christmas, has a heart two sizes too small, and ends up having to buy food in Whoville.  Donna (Rashida Jones) is a mother who is overworked, and multitasking too much, which her daughter Cindy Lou (Cameron Seely) notices, and decides to send Santa a letter on her mother’s behalf.

Since all of the festivities get more rampant the closer it gets to Christmas, it gives him flashbacks of when he was a lonely boy at the orphanage, and was given no gifts or acknowledgement for Christmas. Ultimately, he decides to stop Christmas from happening.

The Grinch’s idea to ruin Christmas involves him becoming Santa Claus, and instead of giving people’s gifts to their rightful owner, he is going to throw them away. I am really struggling with this film, since we’re essentially almost halfway through, and nothing has happened yet. I had to deal with The Grinch twerking for……. no reason, instead of adding more elements to the plot, for some reason. His first job is to steal a reindeer named Fred for him to ride, while all of the children help Cindy Lou come up with some large contraption to get Santa Claus to them.

Anyways, a test run is made for The Grinch’s plan, and create a route for them to follow to steal the presents. He came to learn that Fred had a wife and child, and ended up returning him to then, and Max is promoted to the sleigh driver. The weather becomes perfect on Christmas Eve, and everyone in Whoville is joyous. The Grinch goes on about his work during the night of Christmas Eve, and just when I thought when the two plotlines would come together, he goes to Cindy Lou’s home, and refuses to go to bed before giving Santa her wish for her mother to be happy. The story ended up moving him, and carried onto the plan, only to turn things around when he sees Whovilles make lemons out of lemonade, and really appreciated that Christmas was about appreciating one another. The Grinch returns the gifts, and trees, with him being invited to a party with all of the Whos, since he has been alone for too long.

Illumination continues to be…… Illumination, meaning I am continously uninspired, and even more pandering filler than their last several films. People need to leave Dr. Seuss’ works alone, since it is clear justice will not be served. 3 more films to go for the year.


So, the one thing I can say in a positive manner about this film is that there are barely any characters, and there are only really 3 of them. All of them are painfully generic, but I prefer that over having a large ensemble of generic characters. This is the least interesting Grinch I have ever seen, and while he does get his backstory, he hasn’t even really funny, and has awkward dialogue. And his development in the end was RIDICULOUSLY rushed to the point where it was even contrived for Illumination sakes. The mother and daughter are……. the typical mother and daughter. I don’t really have anything else to say.


The animation is exactly what you would expect from Illumination Studios; simplistic, colourful, and very rounded. For a Dr. Seuss adaption, it looks like a part of the Dr. Seuss world, so it does that job well. Nothing really stands out to me in this regard, but it’s nothing necessarily bad. Just….. average, the go-to Illumination word.


What I remember regarding the music in this film is that there were some unneeded pop-culture music. Like,…….. I do not need to hear any of that, and it just took me even more out of the film.

Reception at Release

When the film was released on November 9th, it has (as of December 26th, 2018) made $260 million domestically, and $169 million in other territories, totaling to a worldwide amount of $425.2 million overall.


Story: 4/10

Characters: 4.5/10

Animation: 7/10

Music: 6/10

21.5/40 = 54%


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