Dr Seuss is back on the big screen. After seeing The Grinch, The Cat in the Hat, and Horton hears a Who become movies, it’s The Lorax’s turn for the feature treatment. Dr. Seuss had a powerful imagination that was able to cater to all ages. Sure he wrote stories for little kids like Green Eggs and Ham, but he also had the ability to speak for the genus he was to craft power messages. The Lorax is said to be Seuss’ personal favorite, due to it’s strong environmental message and he loved the great outdoors.
The original story involved a boy listening to the once-ler tell his tale from riches to rags. Despite warnings from the creature known as the Lorax, he ended up cutting down all of the trees in the forest. Left dark and dirty like a scary graveyard, the once-ler gives the boy the last truffula seed, with a message of hope.
This kind of story is fantastic. Short, simple, but still leaves a good environmental message for everyone. So how do you do this in an hour in a half time frame.
The Lorax expands everything to tell another kind of story. This time, the boy has a name (Ted) and a motivation (a girl) in order to get him to listen to the once-ler. And he lives in a town made of plastic. I found much of this very fascinating. The trouble is that we are rushed immediately into the plot with little time to take in what were seeing.
Everything in this movie looks great. The colors and texture obviously look like that time was taken on everything. This movie proved that Dr. Seuss stories should be animated, not live action.
Would Seuss approve of this movie? Almost. While the movie looks good, I wish that the writers had taken a bigger chance on the story. The original Lorax was dark, showing the once-ler as a guy who let’s the impact of cutting the trees change his soul. This Once-ler is more of a misguided fool who lets others make bad decisions and he suffers for those reasons. I think people would have wanted someone much more evil for the once-ler. It’s not Ed Helms fault, but the writers.
What saves this movie is a new ending. I was scared of this. The Lorax ended in darkness with it’s message of hope. This new Lorax expands on the last truffula seed. I’m not gonna give it away, but the final image is surprisingly beautiful.
I'll give this environmental story 4 out of 5 Trufula trees. The Lorax is a story that does not mathc the book, but should be enjoyed by all ages.