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The Peanuts Movie

The Peanuts Movie: Nostalgic Adaptation of Comic Strip Classic

  • Alexander GarfinAnastasia Bredikhina...
  • Family
  • Steve Martino
reviewed by
Marija Loncarevic
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The Peanuts Movie: Nostalgic Adaptation of Comic Strip Classic

Playing on notions of nostalgia, fans of Charles Schulz’s sixty-five-year-old comic strip classic will have plenty to love about the big-screen outing for Charlie Brown & friends in the charming and quietly witty, The Peanuts Movie.   

Written by Craig and Bryan Schulz – Charles Schulz’s son and grandson respectively – along with a relative newcomer in Cornelius Uliano, the story is centered on Charlie Brown (voiced superbly by Schnapp); an ordinary boy and a perpetual dud who, despite his best intentions, always ends up failing for one reason or another.  Along with his loyal sidekick dog, Snoopy (Melendez) and best-friend Linus (Garfin), Charlie is continually trying to prove himself to his peers who, unfortunately, have very little patience for his escapades.

Charlie’s world is soon turned upside down when he sets his eyes on a new student at his school – a.k.a ‘The Little Red-Haired Girl’ (Capaldi) – whom he very quickly falls for.  However, finding the courage to talk to her becomes a challenge which Charlie must overcome, much to the persistent encouragmenet from Snoopy and his small bird-friend, Woodstock (also voiced by Melendez). Determined to win her over, Charlie is ready for anything, even for the prospect of accepting who he is.

Marking the first theatrical Peanuts film in thirty-five years, you can’t help but be warmed by the film, whose simplistic approach – largely free of contemporary references – pays homage to Schultz’s classic newspaper comic in the most effective of ways. The stylistic choices of Charlie Brown’s world are simple – although the benefits of 3D aren’t utilised all too well – colorful and engaging and while the photo-realistic textures do their bit to enhance the viewing experience to some degree, it’s the presence of hand-drawn touches that give the film its aesthetic edge.

The voice acting is solid and the entire cast – which includes a several young newcomers who are all pretty new to the material – give just the right amount of energy and drive to bring their characters to life, while the use of archived recordings of the late Bill Melendez gives the characters of Snoopy and Woodstock the authenticity this modern adaptation needed.    

Staying true to the source material, director Steven Martino has created an entertaining and a truly nostalgic viewing experience which many of its long-time fans will appreciate. It’s an innocent and infectious animated offering which might be deemed as not being ambitious and maybe even playing it safe, but is still engaging enough for the whole family to enjoy. 

Like This? Try

Happiness is a Warm Blanket (2011), A Charlie Brown Valentine (2002), A Boy Named Charlie Brown (1969)

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