Despite growing up within an hour’s drive from Disneyland, I was always more of a Knott’s Berry Farm kind of kid. Snoopy and the Peanuts gang have been with me for as long as I can remember. I used to have a brown teddy bear named Charlie Brown because I was a very clever kid. I’ve read the comic strips and watched all the movies, and the new 3D animated feature is no exception.
The beautiful thing about Charlie Brown (and I think why I still love Peanuts as an adult) is that he is an absolute failure. But no matter how many times Lucy pulls the football away, good ol’ Chuck keeps going in for the kick. The movie stays true to the Peanuts spirit in this way; it embodies perseverance and the value of learning through failure.
Before watching the film I watched this video of 107 Facts about the Peanuts. I already knew a lot of the information but the video also included some facts about Schulz and the production of The Peanuts Movie.
What I found particularly interesting was the animators’ goal to make the movement in the film feel as close to comics and 2D animation as possible. I didn’t appreciate just how comic-like the film was until I saw it in full. Yes, the movements are quite jagged and stiff with static backgrounds, but they also added a lot of little accents to make it really feel like old school Charlie Brown.
No matter what your favourite Peanuts gag is, you’ll probably see it on the big screen along with all the neighborhood kids. Very little of the film was “new.” There were a lot of familiar recurring scenes and gags, making this a great movie if you have a case of nostalgia for the little beagle and his bald human, or if you want to introduce some little ones to the gang.
I do have one criticism for the creators of this movie and that is: how dare you give Kristen Chenoweth a role that barely makes noise!