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The Adventures of Tintin: The Seven Crystal Balls (Review)

To celebrate the release of The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn in the United States later this month, I’ll be taking a look at some of nineties animated television show. Check back daily!

Note: This is our review of the animated episode, check out our review of the book here.

I’ve always had a soft spot for The Seven Crystal Balls and Prisoners of the Sun. When I was younger, originally watching the show and reading the books, they were my favourite adventure, along with Cigars of the Pharaoh. Perhaps it was the exotic nature of the adventure, with Tintin setting off to far-off ports, or the fascinating occult and unexplained elements. I found it somewhat fascinating the Spielberg chose to make The Secret of the Unicornas his first film, since he makes the case that Tintin is a hero who shares a lot with Indiana Jones. I’d make the case that this adventure here is the one that most perfectly captures the strange occult vibe that Lucas and Spielberg tried to recreate with their whip-weilding explorer.

Not quite the boy scout he used to be...

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The Adventures of Tintin: Red Rackham’s Treasure (Review)

To celebrate the release of The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn in the United States later this month, I’ll be taking a look at some of nineties animated television show. Check back daily!

Note: This is our review of the animated episode, check out our review of the book here.

It’s quite strange, given how lukewarm I was to The Secret of the Unicorn, that I am undeniably fond of Red Rackham’s Treasure. At a time when Hergé seemed to be aiming for fantastic escapism, perhaps to avoid dealing with wartime reality, I think that Red Rackham’s Treasure perfectly encapsulates a lot of what was fun about Tintin, at least for my inner child. There’s hidden treasure, untouched tropic islands, walks along the ocean floor, submarines and even a shark attack! It’s all very light and whimsical, but it’s pure adventure all the way through, with a giddy enthusiasm sustaining the narrative.

Pushing the boat out...

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October 2011 In Review

I occasionally post a little section at the end of the month reviewing some of the more interesting stuff I’ve written – perhaps it might be helpful to a reader navigating the archives, but it’s really for myself, looking back from time to time. Anyway, I hope you enjoy it.

It was a fun month here at the m0vie blog, and one in which we gleefully got to indulge our nerdy little interests. To celebrate the release of Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, I decided to try to review all 24 of Hergé’s Adventures of Tintin. In case you want to browse the reviews, here they are:

It was also a fun month because I somehow ended up on the front page of IMDb, recommended on their hit-list for an article I wrote about my anticipation around the release of Tintin. It’s always a huge pleasure to be cited by people who you admire and respect, in a field where they are really the very big players, and I’m honestly humbled by the experience.

And then there was this

Paul Cornell, comic book writer at DC and writer for the revived Doctor Who (and the novels that preceded it), linked to my review of his superb run on Action Comics. It’s one of the truly great modern comic book runs, and wholeheartedly recommended, but it’s just really, really cool to have Mr. Cornell acknowledge the review. At the risk of gushing, he’s a writer that I’ve been following ever since I caught a repeat of Father’s Day, which was the episode that convinced me that Doctor Who was well worth my time. So, the idea that the guy somehow innocuously clicked on to this blog made my week.

So, yep, at the risk of geeking, it was an awesome month.

Non-Review Review: The Adventures of Tintin – The Secret of the Unicorn

It’s Indiana Jones, but for kids! It’s fascinating that the collaboration of Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson should produce something that feels much more like the earlier Indiana Jones films than Spielberg’s most recent collaboration with George Lucas. Adapting Hergé’s The Adventures of Tintin was always going to be a challenging proposition, and it’s to the credit of everybody involved that it turned out so well. While it’s not quite perfect, The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn is undoubtedly Spielberg’s most entertaining family film since Jurassic Park.

Franchise launcher?

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“You Shiver In Such An-tici-pation”: Upcoming Releases and the Waiting Game…

It’s a bit of a defunct popular witticism that the actual purpose of the internet is not to increase global communication or facilitate and encourage the development and spread of ideas, but exists solely for pornography. I don’t think that’s necessarily true (in fact, it only accounts for 1% of the internet). Instead, I’d argue that the internet exists primarily to provide spoilers, casting calls, plot summaries, set pictures and gossip around all the upcoming releases. In an era where even fictitious characters have facebook and twitter accounts, it sometimes feels like information overload, with constant updates about the status of a given project and director and cast.

All at sea?

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Tintin: The Seven Crystal Balls (Review)

In the lead-up to the release of The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, I’m going to be taking a look at Hergé’s celebrated comic book character, from his humble beginnings through to the incomplete post-modern finale. I hope you enjoy the ride.

Apparently, if Steven Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn is a success, Peter Jackson will be directing a sequel that will be based on the two-part story directly following The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure. I’m already anticipating that, seen as The Seven Crystal Balls and Prisoners of the Sun are probably among my favourite Tintin stories, and I can actually see the rather wonderful conflict between mysticism and rationality playing out really well on the big-screen. It’s pure unadulterated pulp fiction, and it’s pulp fiction done exceptionally well.

Mummy!

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Tintin: Red Rackham’s Treasure (Review)

In the lead-up to the release of The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, I’m going to be taking a look at Hergé’s celebrated comic book character, from his humble beginnings through to the incomplete post-modern finale. I hope you enjoy the ride.

I have to admit to being just a little bit lukewarm to The Secret of the Unicorn as an entry in The Adventures of Tintin. However, the second part in the adventure, Red Rackham’s Treasure, is a much stronger instalment, standing on its own two feet. Part of me has always liked the more exotic Tintin adventures, but I reckon a large part of the appeal of this instalment is seeing Hergé resurrect a genre that has been left fallow for quite a few decades: the good old-fashioned treasure hunt.

Are Tintin and Haddock LOST?

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