The Peanuts Review

The Peanuts Review

Max Bowman, Writer

Let’s say there’s an R rated comedy. The humor is fine for those 16 and under yet they can’t see the movie,  while for those over 17, the humor is too childish. There’s no clear idea who the movie is trying to appeal to or what its intended demographic is. The Peanuts Movie has this problem. In this day and age, where animated kids movies are fast and kinetic, it doesn’t seem like Charlie Brown has a place. The pace and action is too middling for young kids, yet the humor (aside from a few cleverly placed jokes) is too juvenile for adults as it relies on simple slapstick far too often. While I actually enjoyed this movie quite thoroughly, I have no idea who to actually recommend it to. While this review will end with a star rating ensuring its seal of quality, be warned that a highly rated movie does not mean that you should go and see it

The plot here merely serves as a framing device for the characterization of Charlie Brown. Charlie Brown messes up everything he tries and is considered the loser of his neighborhood. However, when the little red-haired girl moves across the street he tries to prove himself as a winner and win her heart. The focus here is 100 percent on Charlie Brown as all the other characters are put to the side. While I do wish the other characters were given more of the  spotlight, considering how many of the side characters only have one defining trait the amount of screentime they were given was acceptable, all except for Linus who has been the star for many Charlie Brown specials and strips. However, all the focus on Charlie Brown makes for one of the most endearing kids characters I’ve seen in years. Time and time again, he’ll actually accomplish something impressive, only to let his spotlight fade in order to help someone else. The talent show is one of the sweeter moments as Charlie sacrifices his moment of greatness to help his little sister. He is one of the sweetest characters you’ll know, yet it seems as though the world is conspiring against him – giving him the instant charisma of an underdog.

Charlie Brown has a lot of heart. You can see the love and heart put into it and the dedication for sticking to the original comic strip that first aired all the way back in 1950. The Peanuts world has been painstakingly recreated –  whether it’s the lavish 3D animation that looks as though it’s been ripped straight out of a comic strip, or the authentic child voice actors who all do great jobs portraying their characters. It even keeps the slow, cynical pace with touches of heartfelt moments, which, unfortunately, proves to be the film’s biggest problem and accomplishment. While I loved the film’s slow pace, many others will be bored and the moments where the movie lulls, while i was satisfied due to the pounds of nostalgia constantly being heaved at me, other will be thoroughly bored. Charlie Brown was always known for being slow and deadpan which while not exactly deadpan anymore thanks to the slew of slapstick humor, is still very slow and subtle which will bore most audiences

The Peanuts Movie, as much praise as I’m giving it, is only a good movie. It hits all the right notes yet does nothing special. My only real complaints are whenever the movie uses modern songs that break the immersion and Snoopy’s Red Baron vignettes, which add up to be about 5 minutes too long. If you’re not familiar with Charlie Brown and hold no nostalgia for the series, it’s hard to say whether or not you’ll enjoy the movie. However, for all the Charlie Brown fans out there, this movie is just for you.