The Lorax (2012)

Orange is the New Green

12-year old Ted lives in Thneed-Ville a place where nature no longer exists and everything is manufactured from the artificial grass to the equally artificial trees and those seeking a bit of a buzz can buy bottles of O'Hare's fresh air. Young Ted has a crush on Audrey who really wants to see a real life Truffula tree, the sort which use to grow where Thneed-Ville now resides and so Ted ventures outside to where the Once-ler lives in the bleak countryside which has been left ruined by greed. But Ted's journey into the outside world doesn't go unnoticed especially by businessman Mr. O'Hare who is all for the replacement of natural with artificial as it means people will buy his bottled air.

I have mentioned this before but I never read a Dr. Seuss book as a child and still haven't. As such whilst I have heard of the Grinch and the Cat in the Hat when it came to The Lorax I knew absolutely nothing. And so I have no idea whether "The Lorax" stays true to the original tale or not, I would imagine not as considering the main storyline is one about the destruction of the environment some of the sub-plots seem strange bed fellows. Not only that with some big musical scenes it certainly feels like that those behind "The Lorax" have had to draw things out to make it movie length.

The thing is that whilst I have no childhood, emotional connection to the original story I can see how "The Lorax" would entertain a young audience. We have plenty of quirky characters, lots of comedy at a variety of levels, some entertaining animation set pieces and clever casting of the voices with Danny DeVito's growl seemingly perfect as The Lorax. Plus of course there is the environmental storyline which is plain to see but done in such a way that it makes you smile despite of the unsubtlety.

But whilst I can see how for the right youthful audience "The Lorax" is sure to work as an adult I just needed something a bit more to make this more than just an enjoyable animation. It comes close at times with the amount of detail in the animations combined with the humour but still for me as a grown up I needed something else.

What this all boils down to is that "The Lorax" is a beautifully detailed animation with a very easy to follow storyline and plenty of humour. But for me this is very much an animation for children or those who read The Lorax as a child as for those like me who watch this with no knowledge of The Lorax it feels like it needs something more.