Film: 'Dr. Seuss' The lorax'; Voiceovers: Zac Efron, Taylor Swift, Danny DeVito, Ed Helms; Directors: Chris Renaud and Kyle Balda; Rating: 3/5
Theodor Seuss Geisel, more popular as Dr. Seuss - a doctor of words not body - loved children. So much so that instead of preaching them important lessons of life, he created beautiful and imaginative stories around them. 'The lorax' is one of them.
Though the film, despite its good animation, does not live up to its expectation, just for its beautiful heart that beats for the right causes, it is good enough watch for adults. For kids of all ages, this one's a must watch.
Besotted by a girl who loves trees, 12-year-old Ted (Zac Efron), living in a futuristic city devoid of any real trees, goes in search of the 'Once-ler' (Ed Helms) to find from him the secret of the now disappeared trees. What unfolds is a story of horror where Once-ler, guided by his greed and oblivious to the dangers of his actions, has rid the world of its trees.
Children's stories or movies are often known for their very adult themes and messages. In that sense, 'The lorax' is a film that has a message as much for adults as for kid because though it is indeed important to groom kids to the messages of conservation and sustenance, those who need immediate reminding, are adults.
Adults, who in their mad craze for 'plastic' beauty and 'dirt' free environment have removed every ounce of nature they can, the walled city of Thneed-Ville in the animation film thus becomes every city in every industrialised country that has traded nature for false security of a modern and clean existence.
That this existence has led to the desecration of nature and everything that protects us on spaceship earth, is something that despite loads of warning and danger signals flashing all over like global warming, sudden weather variations etc., we have failed to see.
In that sense, 'The lorax' tries to show the importance of living in harmony with nature and not with its destruction, as the basis of human existence.
It makes a comment on industrialised society we live in and cities where everything is spic and span at the surface, but causes so much filth and garbage that this artificial beauty is literally floating on its own excretion. Humanity, when it comes to nature, perennially lives in the sweep-below-the-carpet syndrome.
Yet, these serious messages are only for adults. For children, it is neither preachy nor didactic. It is just a fun film for kids, despite the few problems that could have easily been ironed out at the scripting stage.