Film Review “The Peanuts Movie”

imagesStarring: Noah Schnap, Hadley Bill Miller and Bill Melendez
Directed by: Steve Martino
Rated: PG
Running time: 1 hour 33 mins
20th Century Fox

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

For those of us from a certain time, the “Peanuts” comic strip is a definite part of our growing up. I collected the paperback books, read the daily comic strips and can proudly say that I am so old that I can remember watching “A Charlie Brown Christmas” when it debuted! Five decades of memories are treated with the respect they deserve in the new film “The Peanuts Movie.”

As the film begins, the gang are celebrating a new snow fall, which signals a snow day. We gradually meet all of the familiar characters (Linus, Lucy, Sally and, of course, Snoopy). And we meet a new one when a moving truck shows up. The family consists of a mother and father and a pretty little red-headed girl. Cue the arrows to the heart – Charlie Brown is in love.

A production from the same group that made the “Ice Age” films, I have to give great credit to the filmmakers for keeping the look of the characters the same. Even though the animation is done via CGI, the way the characters move and interact is similar to the original hand-drawn films and television specials from the past. Each character is given their familiar traits (Lucy’s vainness, Schroeder’s piano playing, Linus and his blanket) and situations. Each character is given their due, almost as if the film was a true ensemble piece. The story is straight-forward but will be entertaining for both young and old viewers.

Sometimes when my wife and I go to Walmart we’ll go near the aisle that has the musical Snoopy figures. We have been known to press “on” occasionally and do the Snoopy dance in the middle of the store, much to the enjoyment of the other customers. Go see “The Peanuts Movie.” You’ll be doing the Snoopy dance up the aisle when it’s over!

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