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Three times too many?

Jake's take on the Grinch

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Three times too many?

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It’s time for what many consider to be the most wonderful time of the year. What’s better than checking out one of the most beloved Christmas classics of all time in How the Grinch Stole Christmas written by children’s author Dr. Suess. The most well known of his movies are the three I am looking at today, the most recent entry being The Grinch (2018).

Going back to the beginning, we’ll look at How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966). This is a short film narrated by Frankenstein himself, Boris Karlof. The film cuts to the chase immediately and details how much the Grinch hates Christmas. Following this is a montage of the Grinch preparing to steal Christmas set to one of the most iconic songs of your childhood in You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch. Almost anytime someone thinks of the Grinch, this one is usually the first one to pop into anyone’s head, even 52 years later. My rating for this one is nine cans of who-hash out of 10.

Moving forward 34 years, we were given a live-action adaptation of this story, also called How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000). This story gives us more of a backstory about the Grinch and explains why he hates Christmas so much. In short, they made him a child who was bullied around Christmas time, causing him to run away and hide in a mountain until adulthood. From there the rest of the story remains the same, a well done montage of the Grinch preparing and then stealing Christmas again, except this time it just looks awkward. Most of the scenes were taken almost exactly from the original story, but not everything translates well to live action. The most terrifying imagery of your childhood came from this movie. All of the actors are put in makeup that connects their nose and their upper lip, in order to make them look like the Who’s from the previous stories. While not a bad adaptation, something just doesn’t feel right about this one; however, nostalgia for this story forbids me to not enjoy it every time I watch it. My rating is four cans of who-hash out of 10.

Finally we have the new film, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, just simply called The Grinch (2018). As soon as a remake is announced everyone is quick to hate it. However, I went into this one open minded and it wasn’t actually terrible. We’re given a different backstory showing the Grinch as an orphan, feeling alone on Christmas. Just as simple as the previous film, but more effective to the story. He decides to steal Christmas and most of the movie is dedicated to careful planning rather than a montage. Still, once it gets to Christmas, we get another montage that has been updated and actually is my favorite out of the three. It changed some of the original jokes but not in a bad way. Some moments in this film will make a you cringe a little and some moments just in general are a little weird, but nothing is bad enough to make this a bad movie. If this were to become what kids thought of when someone says the Grinch, it is very justified. My rating is six cans of who-hash out of 10.

Going into this review, I tried to keep an open mind and not let nostalgia blind me. This was a very difficult task to do because all three of these movies tap into that nostalgia in some way. Obviously there’s going to be a best and worse movie and probably everyone would disagree with my review; but something all of these movies get right is the meaning of Christmas.

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Three times too many?