Th all the char­ac­ters we know and love

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Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODPOSTER - JBJ RE­PORTER

SNOOPY & Char­lie Brown: The Peanuts Movie is a sweet lit­tle gift for fans of the long-run­ning comic strip.

Based on a script writ­ten in part by the son and grand­son of Peanuts cre­ator Charles M Schulz, The Peanuts Movie is de­light­fully faith­ful to the earnest spirit of the orig­i­nal char­ac­ters and their beloved hol­i­day tele­vi­sion spe­cials. Di­rec­tor Steve Martino fo­cuses on sev­eral themes fa­mil­iar from those works: youth­ful angst, love, em­bar­rass­ment and imag­i­na­tion, all of which will tug on the heart­strings of nos­tal­gic adults alike while in­tro­duc­ing even the youngest movie­go­ers to the world of Char­lie Brown and his pals.

Char­lie (voiced by Noah Sch­napp) has fallen in love with the Lit­tle Red-Haired Girl (Francesca Ca­paldi), who has moved in across the street. Try­ing his hard­est to im­press her, he learns magic tricks and dance moves. But he’s re­peat­edly foiled be­fore he can find the courage to talk to her.

Snoopy – whose vo­cal­i­sa­tions use archival record­ings by the late Bill Me­len­dez – is also in love, but with the dog of his day­dreams. As the imag­i­nary Fly­ing Ace bat­tling the Red Baron from the roof of his dog­house, Snoopy comes across a beau­ti­ful French poo­dle, Fifi (Kristin Chenoweth). The brightly coloured World War I flight scenes take good ad­van­tage of the film’s 3D an­i­ma­tion.

Di­rec­tor Martino has cap­tured the emo­tions that made Peanuts so mean­ing­ful, mas­ter­fully repli­cat­ing Schulz’s hand-drawn ex­pres­sions, in­clud­ing Char­lie’s sighs, Sally’s smiles and the ex­as­per­ated yells of Lucy (Hadley Belle Miller). The film-makers also stay true to the time­less­ness of Schulz’s world. The only tweets come from Wood­stock, and Li­nus (Alexan­der Garfin) grips his blan­ket in­stead of an iPhone. Schroeder (Noah John­ston) still plays Beethoven on his toy pi­ano, and Lucy charges only 5c for ad­vice.

Par­ents’ hearts will melt ev­ery time Sally (Mariel Sheets) lov­ingly calls Char­lie “Big Brother”, and when Char­lie – feel­ing de­jected at his prospects – laments that he has no fu­ture with the Lit­tle Red- Haired Girl be­cause “she’s some­thing, and I’m noth­ing”. An en­ter­tain­ing com­bi­na­tion of hu­mour and ten­der­ness, The Peanuts Movie isn’t just an all-ages crowd-pleaser. It’s the per­fect first fea­ture film for a preschooler. – Wash­ing­ton Post

WIN: Three read­ers can win a ham­per with a Peanuts bag, school set, cap,T-shirt and watch. E-mail your name, sur­name and age and with the sub­ject line “The Peanuts Movie” to me­lanie.peters@inl.co.za by Mon­day.

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