Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town Reviews

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December 24, 2015
I was kind of skeptical of Disney/Pixar releasing a 2nd film this year, being afraid that the one that took more time and effort would be overall the better one. So I thought of The Good Dinosaur as sort of a throwaway movie that didn't really mean much for Pixar (kind of like Cars 2.) I saw it was VERY under-promoted and the trailers didn't really show much of the actual film. So naturally my interest was...meh. Was I right? Well...let's take a look.

The first thing you need to know is that this takes place in an alternate reality where the supposed meteor that killed the dinosaurs passed and..didn't kill them off. Anyway, going on, when a storm washes a dinosaur named Arlo (voiced by Raymond Ochoa) downriver, he ends up stranded and meets this kid later named Spot (voiced by Jack Bright) and the two go on an epic journey to find Arlo's way home.

First off, I'll say that I almost overlooked the fact that the meteor thing didn't happen in this. I mean, it was only there for a minute and honestly didn't really effect the plot all that much. But other that, I'll say that overall, the guy who voices Arlo (again, Raymond Ochoa) is really good! He isn't one of the best child actors of all time or anything, but he does serve all the necessary emotion he needs.
Next, I'll say that one major thing I like about this film..scratch that, adore about it is its visuals. Dear lord, especially the backgrounds in this are some of the best CGI I have ever seen. It is beautiful and a HUGE step up in terms of Pixar. Extremely good work indeed!
When The Good Dinosaur needs to be suspenseful, it really is! As well as heartwarming. A certain scene a bit after he gets stranded is especially heartwarming and has some extremely good writing. The movie does have a tragedy that happens early on, and it's written well yet, if I'm being completely honest, it was kind of predictable. Not that big a problem but...meh. A bit of a nitpick.
Humor wasn't a huge part in this but for the little it had it was relatively funny! Nothing groundbreaking, nothing incredible. But relatively funny.
Surprisingly, Spot wasn't that annoying. I mean, most kids characters in films are written really really badly and usually very annoying. But Spot is one of the few exceptions....mostly. Granted, for the first 3rd of the film, until he starts to grow a connection with Arlo, I could easily see why people would find him annoying. And if I'm being completely honest..yeah, he was. But you seem to loose that vibe with him, again, as soon as he starts to grow a connection with Arlo.
Something I noticed a bit into the film is that I didn't think the film was composed by Michael Giacchino (composer of most of Pixar's films.) And really I could see why. This is that kind of film. It's relatively different in terms of Disney. It was nice to see a bit of a new more naturalistic feel to the music. I highly suggest you check it out.
One final thing I want to mention is the ending. Dear lord, the ending to this is fantastic. It is very very well written and very touching and heartwarming. Also kind of depressing to an extent. Though we have sort of seen the scenario before but.. I just can't help it, man, it's really good!

Now onto things I didn't necessarily like (up until the last paragraph). At times, the story can be a bit clunky. To the point where you can easily rip certain bits out of the film and it'd be perfectly fine. Honestly, some bits in the film were much more interesting than others. For example, the "main antagonist" if you can really call it that doesn't really come in until half in. If anything, The Good Dinosaur doesn't really HAVE a main antagonist. But they just decided to shoehorn in someone or something to make it more...traditional, perhaps? There was another section around the middle where the two come across some other dinosaurs. Nothing of substance really happens in this whole sequence and they continue on their way home 10 or 15 mins after. As I said earlier, this is one of the scenes that you could have easily cut out and it would not have changed a thing.
Although a very small thing in the movie, the relatives aren't very interesting. Granted, they aren't really supposed to be. The film isn't centered around them! But still, a bit more screen time and a bit more character development wouldn't have hurt. But that's just a nitpick.
Is it just me or are certain bits of this very reminiscent of the Lion King? I don't know, the tragedy happening, heck, the basic SET UP of the tragedy is VERY reminiscent of The Lion King. Other small bits are very very similar. Granted, the film overall isn't very similar as a whole. But specifically those sections got me really...odd. It was very odd.

So overall, I'd highly recommend you check it out! It's relatively good but, honestly, not as good as Inside Out. Actually, in terms of emotion, I think it might be better than Inside Out!...no pun intended. But as a overall film, probably not. Visually stunning and great in terms of heart, but with flaws, I highly suggest you check it out.
½ December 24, 2015
151224: A Christmas favourite.
December 21, 2015
My favorite Rankin/Bass special and one of my all time favorite Christmas movies! So much nostalgia and joy for me when I watch this. I love the characters, the songs, and the story so much! When I was a child, THIS was the Santa Claus I wanted to believe in!
December 18, 2015
You put one foot in front of the other
December 7, 2015
Classic holiday special
December 6, 2015
Creative, fun, and utterly harmless. When I think of the classic Rankin and Bass TV Christmas specials, I don't think of "Rudolph" or "Frosty the Snowman," but I immediately think of this lovely little gem.
November 13, 2015
One of those must-watch television specials for every holiday season! I do just that, and the magic never seems to fade. (First viewing - Childhood)
½ July 30, 2015
This was a good film and it works well, but it still lacked some fun action and a few ideas, but besides that, I liked this movie quite a bit and I would just barely consider this a classic.
January 11, 2015
Don't remember it well, but how could it be bad?
December 25, 2014
Another classic Christmas story to watch with the family like Rudolph & Frosty
½ December 14, 2014
Another great video craft production animation tv short. I love it and try too wAtch it every year but don't have time, awesome.
December 1, 2014
Great Christmas Classic! Wouldn't be Christmas without!
November 30, 2014
classic.

A must watch every Christmas
½ December 30, 2013
Rankin and Bass produce a stop motion story telling the origins of Santa using songs and comon Christmas traditions as inspiration. Burgermeister Meisterburger is truly one of the great villains of all time and only time manages to defeat him as Santa, despite all his efforts, only manages to work around his evil ways never truly removing the problem. Of course, Santa is more a pacifist which would explain why a man with animal like skills, an army of elf builders, a powerful wizard and flying reindeer can't seem to defeat an old grouch.
While I was a little displeased that the Christian aspects of the holiday were mostly left out of this story (only hinted at indirectly a couple times), and some of the "reasons" for Santa Claus' actions etc. were a little far fetched, Santa Claus is Comin' to Town! still manages to tell a fun tale trying to explain the big man in the red suit. The music is decent though not nearly as good as most of the other Rankin Bass productions but this is classic Christmas fare that should be consumed at least once a year.
December 29, 2013
One of the great Rankin/Bass Christmas specials with great songs, memorable characters, good voice work, and a solid story about the origins of Santa Claus. A must every Christmas.
December 24, 2013
Great movie!! :) I love it! Pretty Funny!
December 24, 2013
"Put one foot in front of the other!"
December 24, 2013
It was a really enjoyable, very magical and very special stop-motion animated Christmas special classic. It had really great animation, really great voice cast, very great narration, really great visuals, really great characters, really fun songs, great adventure and a great story. It's one of the best animated Christmas classics of all time. I will recommend this Christmas special to both children and adults.
December 24, 2013
This one just doesn't live up to the standards I've come to expect from Rankin-Bass, in terms of both characters and songs.
December 23, 2013
my favorite christmas movie of all time
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