Gulliver’s Travels

  • 2011-01-06
  • By Michael Litvinsky

Director: Rob Letterman

Competing with the classics is always tough. Especially when your goal is not really to make a screen adaptation, but rather to fantasize on a similar subject. The only two things that connect the movie to the original novel by Jonathan Swift are the last name of the main character and the fact that, at some point, he finds himself in the country of Lilliput, inhabited by tiny people. With this, unfortunately, the similarities end.

The new Gulliver works as a travel writer, and is forced to write about the Bermuda triangle, when his boat wrecks. He finds an island inhabited fully by lilliputs, and that’s where the fun begins. Jack Black, playing Gulliver, does what he does best – grimaces, jives and makes a fool of his character in every way possible. And since he is one of the best in Hollywood in doing that, the movie starts off really funny. Unfortunately, all the physical jokes begin to get very annoying after the first 30 minutes, and the lack of classy textual humor and a solid script for the movie becomes really obvious.

Since the movie was released in 3D format, it is pretty obvious that the visual effects in the film are on a good level, nevertheless, it must be said that, after “Avatar” and “Inception,” it is really hard for a movie-maker to surprise a viewer with just special effects and sparkle. Furthermore, “Gulliver’s Travels” is a comedy, a genre, which puts the visual dressing of the film in second place.

For director Rob Letterman, “Gulliver’s Travels” is the first movie he directed. Before that, he had only worked on the cartoons “Shark’s Tale” and “Monster vs. Aliens,” both of which were pretty good. Maybe the problem with “Gulliver’s Travels” is its excessive “cartoonness,” which doesn’t always work well in a movie. Anyway, “Gulliver’s Travels” is a fun way to kill time or to watch together in a big group.

Now showing in Latvia; Premiere in Estonia and Lithuania on Feb. 11


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