A misunderstood Grinch who’s green with envy
This version of the classic tale shows a different, surprising side to the Whos and the Grinch
1/2 (out of 4)
The three words that best describe The Grinch are as follows, and I quote: Who woulda thunk?
Who woulda thunk that Yarrow Cheney and Scott Mosier, the latest filmmakers to big-screen Dr. Seuss’s Yuletide classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, would find equal if unspoken inspiration from another holiday perennial, A Charlie Brown Christmas?
This curious incarnation of the Grinch, enthusiastically voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch, reveals the seasonal meanie to be more Charlie Brown lonely boy than Christmas-hating misanthrope. He’s green with envy, yearning for Christmas fellowship he never really knew and struggling to understand the joy of others.
In this telling of the Seussian saga, the Grinch was orphaned and exiled from Whoville to desolate nearby Mount Crumpit, with only his dog Max for company. He stares down in despair and fury at the colourful Who cottages.
The merrymaking Whos are happily more diverse than before: Kenan Thompson voices a jolly character named Bricklebaum and Pharrell Williams narrates.
But the Whos aren’t saints. They’re as negligent about offering assistance to guys like the Grinch as they are with obeying construction safety codes and noise bylaws. Poohpooh to the Whos!
The Grinch is still planning to steal Christmas as before, but now he’s doing a practice run using a drone camera.
The best bits are at the start, where we learn more about the Grinch’s lonely daily routine. Who knew he wears tighty whities in bed, shops for Who Hash at the Who Foods store and serenades himself by playing Eric Carmen’s “All By Myself ” on a giant baroque organ?
Read Howell’s full review at thestar.com/movies
Benedict Cumberbatch enthusiastically voices the latest iteration of The Grinch.