The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (PG) It’s not often Disney doesn’t deliver; whether animation or live-action, their big screen outings are normally at least enjoyable.
Sadly, this re-telling of E.T. A. Hoffmann’s short story The Nutcracker and the Mouse King and Marius Petipa’s The Nutcracker is sorely lacking the studio’s trademark magic.
The story is a familiar one as youngster Clara (Mackenzie Foy) is transported into a fantasyfilled world when she gets her hands on a mysterious key.
So far so Alice in Wonderland, but Disney’s Nutcracker could’ve done with embracing the kookiness and darker tone running throughout their take on the Lewis Carroll fairytale as this is shallow, day-glow fare in comparison.
Which is a shame as Foy does some powerful work as our guiding light; she isn’t just a wideeyed presence swept up in her plight, but a determined, intelligent young woman worthy of a more modern heroine.
Co-directors Lasse Hallström and Joe Johnston also do a good job with the visuals as every scene is bursting with colour and the costumes and sets look like they must have cost a fortune to whip up.
Everything else, though, either misses the mark or feels recycled from earlier, superior Disney outings.
Helen Mirren’s Mother Ginger doesn’t evoke enough menace to rate as one of the Mouse
Fantasy friends Foy (Clara) and Knightley (Sugar Plum Fairy)