By Kimberly Rosales |Staff Writer|
A tiny, slightly annoying but endearing orange creature has taken over the big screen.
“The Lorax,” which opened on March 2, is a musical comedy-drama which takes the audience into the whimsical world of Ted Wiggins, voiced by Zac Efron, an optimistic 12-year-old boy who lives in the town of “Thneed-ville,” a walled in city that is completely artificial, lacking any form of nature that is not made of plastic or other man-made materials.
To win over the affections of the girls of his dreams, Audrey (Taylor Swift), Ted sets out to find the one thing she dreams of seeing, a real live tree.
With the help of his eccentric grandmother (Betty White), Ted manages to locate the Once-ler (Ed Helms), a man who lives far outside the city walls in a wasteland.
The Once-ler tells Ted the story of the Lorax (Danny DeVito), a creature who speaks for the trees and how they came to be nonexistent.
Ted soon discovers that there’s more to the story behind his comfy, seemingly perfect town of Thneed-ville, and soon finds himself on a mission to change the past with Mr. O’Hare (Rob Riggle), the greedy proprietor of a bottled oxygen company, out to stop him.
Though the film is more pleasant than not, its plot is unexpected.
For viewers who have not read Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax,” the trailer gives the impression that the film is about a young boy who goes on this great adventure to find a Truffula tree and encounters the Lorax.
The storyline is completely different than how the trailers for “The Lorax” presented it.
The book, “The Lorax” focuses more on the story of the Once-ler recounting his story to the boy and urging him to plant the last of the Truffle seed.
The film adds completely new characters and focuses on the boy, Ted, who apparently is the key to saving the town and restoring nature to their artificial city. The plot ends up giving the actual Lorax minimal screen time.
One of the strong points of the film is the quirky characters, mainly the Lorax, the gang of cute forest creatures and Ted himself who give the film its funny moments.
The bright and unconventional colors in the film help contribute to the delightfulness of the Dr. Seuss based film.
“The Lorax” is plenty enjoyable for children but strikes a different tone with an adult audience.
The film becomes preachy towards the end by trying to appeal to the inner environmentalist in all of us.
“The Lorax” has a strong “Go Green” message from the second half of the film and on that it soon feels like a lecture on the importance of conserving the planet.
This does not go unnoticed by critics. The film scored a Metacritic score of 47, based on various mixed or average reviews.
Regardless of all criticism, “The Lorax” opened as No. 1 at the box office, raking in $70.2 million in its first week.
Though “The Lorax” may seem like an 90-minute ad for environmentalism, it is a cute film with plenty of funny moments and is worth watching at least once with family.