It's been quite a ride: anticipation running high, speculation that this could be the greatest DreamWorks film yet, some mixed reviews, some more positive ones, trepidation; and now US fans can find out for themselves how good DreamWorks' Rise of the Guardians - playing now in the US - actually is!
Village Voice's Chris Packham says that "at times, it approaches some of Pixar's best." While, somewhat less enthusiastically, but still positively, L.A. Times' Betsy Sharkey says:
"Some of the scenes are minimal in detail, others are jam-packed and can make for visual overload. There is a lot to savor in "Rise of the Guardians," but sometimes too much of a good thing can be exhausting."
The growing consensus seems to be that the film is great fun, with fantastic animation and a grand story, but is far more of a kiddie-caper than expected. Roger Ebert calls Rise of the Guardians a "hyperkinetic 3-D action comedy" but says that "parents and older siblings may find the 89-minute running time quite long enough." But he ends his three star (our of four) review of the film on a positive note, saying that it's "a crisp, colorful fantasy world, sharper-edged than many feature-length children's cartoons."
Rise of the Guardians is directed by Peter Ramsey, who previously directed the Monsters vs. Aliens TV special, Mutant Pumpkins from Outer Space (and did a Reddit AMA yesterday) and based on the Guardians of Childhood book series by William Joyce. It currently holds a 77% Certified Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes from 65 reviews - with 88% from 8 Top Critics reviews.
To celebrate the US release of Rise of the Guardians (which I cannot wait for!), check out this hilarious new clip - clearly hoping to strike up an Avengers vibe with its title, "Guardians Assemble" - from the film, which opens next Friday (30th November) in the UK.
Seen Rise of the Guardians yet? Like it? Hate it? Underwhelmed? Let us know in the comments section or on Twitter.