| Original Score: 2/4
| Original Score: 4/5
| Original Score: 5/5
| Original Score: A-
[A] disappointing mixed bag.
A rich, mostly tender fairy tale.
A tepid, CGI-enhanced family movie that should delight 6-year-olds with a lap full of popcorn.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
What makes The Water Horse different is its sophisticated, wraparound story, which initially seems at odds with a computer-generated sea-beast.
| Original Score: 3/4
The film is a triumph of empathy.
| Original Score: 4/4
Maybe the best thing about this cute pet movie is that the kids won't be able to talk you into picking one up on the way home from the theater.
| Original Score: 3/5
Few kid films manage to assemble this much ambition alongside this much sincere, sweet emotion.
| Original Score: B
It's a little corny and somewhat overlong, but a sweet sensibility and stirring adventure scenes make The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep a welcome gift for anyone looking to keep kids entertained over the holidays.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
The film is what family entertainment ought to be, but so rarely is: a ripping good adventure, a parable about childhood and maturity, and a romp.
The Water Horse moves along at a dutiful clip, engaging us without transporting us.
Many lonely children yearn for a pet to call their own. In The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep based on a novel by Dick King-Smith, a boy finds not only that, but a best friend as well.
| Original Score: 4/5
Parents, forget about those warbling mischievous chipmunks. If you want to take the kids on a delightful animal adventure that you will enjoy as much as they do, go see The Water Horse.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep is a Christmas surprise, a charming family film that skips the sugar coating to create a believable bond between a boy and a beast.
| Original Score: B+
...the film looks grand. A little too grand for the sappy proceedings.
The average 12-year-old will find it slow and predictable.
What it lacks in originality, it makes up for in execution.
Adapted with charming dispatch from the Dick King-Smith story.
You can't deny the solid performances, the meticulous period detail and, most importantly, the way it refuses to talk down to young audiences.
In an era when pop-culture onslaughts are more fashionable, family movies of this quality are hard to find.
A sweet, familiar story, beautifully filmed and lovingly told.
Director Jay Russell grounds the fantasy in serious drama, with enough slapstick to keep it from getting too scary for tots.
Like most British family films, Water Horse doesn't dumb down its young characters or insult the intelligence of the audience. It has a lot of sly humor.
No surprises, really, just a nice-looking movie with good digital effects and a cute kid.
The story is clever and heartwarming enough for the film to work on some level for adults and children (although it skews younger). Plus, the CGI work is competently done.
It all plays out as you know it must, right down to [Brian] Cox's narrative revelation at the end, but that doesn't diminish the sense of satisfaction this gratifying family entertainment delivers.
It declines to take itself seriously, yet manages, sometimes simultaneously, to be exciting, instructive, cheerfully absurd and genuinely affecting.
The best kiddie picture of the season -- and, along with Ratatouille, of the year.
Family films that won't make adults gag are always in short supply, so a pleasing British fantasy, The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep, is a welcome addition to the holiday season.
Though it strikes some predictable coming-of-age notes, this moving, well-wrought adventure should appeal to fans of E.T. and Carroll Ballard.
The star of this Scottish fable, about the mythical Loch Ness monster, looks like a raw chicken breast with teeth when he hatches.
| Original Score: C-