That was Tintin's fate tonight, premiere night, when my particular group of relational units went to see the newest Spielberg project.
Movie poster from here.
To be fair, there were only 2 true Tintin fans in the focus group, my son and I. Bedtimes were our favorite time to read all the classic graphic novels by Herge, the Belgian genius storyteller. We also watched all the animated TV shows that were out there on VHS tape back in the day. I first saw one of those way way back in the seventies, and for me, it was the greatest thing ever, the books brought to life.
The movie was a careful tribute to the original books, including references and Easter eggs throughout.
Yet for all that, I couldn't give it more than a 7. There was something tiresome about the whole thing. I have read the books so many times there was no suspense as to the ending (the plot is, if you don't know and do care, based on The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham's Treasure). And all the unlikely chase scenes and explosions and hotels with tanks inside them ended up feeling contrived, as if thousands of people had worked on them to get them perfect.
Which, I think, is what actually happened.
Plus, this idea of a one-on-one duel with the bad guy at the end that lasts for about 20 minutes is getting boring as well. (Do not worry, I am not spoiling anything by saying this. You probably won't see it coming, and it has a lot of unusual elements that are somewhat surprising.)
I liked Tintin the character. I like Jamie Bell, who voices Tintin, and the animation does a good job capturing him and his dog Snowy. Snowy was the consensus favorite character among our crowd. We do have a little white dog at home. Maybe this influenced things.
There will be a sequel. I will go see it. But I don't think that it will ever replace the memory of that TV show in my young heart. Often, nostalgia for a thing is better than someone else's vision of the thing itself.