Directed by Mark Waters. Starring Freddie Highmore, Sarah Bolger, Nick Nolte, Mary-Louise Parker, David Strathairn. Starring voices by Seth Rogen and Martin Short.
The Spiderwick Chronicles was a film, based on a children’s book, I wasn’t exactly anticipating, but I did want to see it after being exposed to a few trailers. The story follows the Graces, a family that moves into an old house in the country once owned byt heir great uncle, a Arthur Spiderwick. Spiderwick spent the bulk of his life documenting the magical world beyond our senses, filled with goblins, ogres, hobgoblins, and so on.
Anyways, the kids find the book Spideriwck compiled, which is wanted by Mulgarath – the evil orge, and they battle a bunch of magical stuff an, well, you know the sort of story.
The film has its plot-falls and I wish there had been more variation in the magical creatures shown, but those are really my only complaints about the film. The story is fun. What human being with even a bit of a heart and a little imagination wouldn’t be excited by the prospect of a crazy, fantastical world in their backyard? That’s really what the film is about. Remember when you were a kid and you’d run into the woods behind your house and pretend to fight fantastical creatures? Well, Spiderwick will conjure up similar memories, which I thought was premium bad ass.
Without giving undue credit to the film, it did present an interesting philosophical question: is security and safety worth sacrificing for knowledge, knowledge that has no practical use? The film answers “yes,” and whether or not the question it posed was intentional or not is debatable. Still, it gave the film a level of sophistication, not much of one, but I won’t complain considering it’s a children’s film.
Seth Rogen as the voice of Hogsqueal was legitimately lough-out-loud funny – a great character. Freddie Highmore (Finding Neverland) gave a pretty good performance as the the pair of twins, Jared and Simon Grace (is Freddie the next Lindsey Lohan?).
With this film, if you want to enjoy it, you need to just let your imagination go and enjoy the adventure.