The BoxTrolls

Where I Watched it: Netflix

English Audio Description?: Yes

I missed this one when I could still see. I can’t really remember why. I enjoy most stop motion animation, and this one did have critical acclaim. Something tells me it wasn’t in theatres very long, though that wouldn’t have stopped me from getting this on Redbox. So, I have no excuse.

My first foray into this absolutely bonkers animated feature is with audio description. I think there’s something beautiful about the stop motion process, and it’s hard to really capture that with audio description. Sometimes, magic is just magic, and you either feel it or you don’t.

I think stop motion has led to so many off-beat projects over the years, films like The Corpse Bride, A nightmare Before Christmas, Coraline, ParaNorman, and last years Wendell and Wild and Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio. The BoxTrolls is definitely creative and inventive, but I’m just not sure I liked it.

The story of an orphan raised by this group of creatures known as the BoxTrolls, is told through the eyes of children, with a hint of corruption thrown into the plot. Much like Jane learns when she finds Tarzan, our main girl (voiced by Saorise Ronan) finds out that these creatures she’s always heard eat people, actually don’t. Great kids movie.

I don’t know. I think this just didn’t work for me. If I could tweak the audio description a bit more, i would have it lean in on describing the visual differences a bit more in the BoxTrolls. I have a feeling they’re a slightly more gothic version of the bright and colorful Trolls that last went on World Tour, and those trolls were all about their physical appearance. They were basically defined by how they look. Here, I didn’t feel like the BoxTrolls felt one dimensional. To be fair, I had the same problem with Trolls.

I know critics will disagree with me, but this is one of those rare occasions where the time and energy spent on a stop motion film just didn’t pay off. It’s not bad, I just have no real desire to sit through this again. And with the weirdness of the plot, I’m thinking that like Coraline, this one might not really be for kids. At least, not elementary school aged ones. But, if you choose, the audio description is fine. Not exceptional, but fine.

Final Grade: C

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