Charlie Brown is truly a timeless classic. Enjoyed for the past couple of generations, no one can forget A Charlie Brown Christmas or It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Those seasonal shows are still shown on television every year and have been for the last 50 years. Now, a new generation of kids will be introduced to Charlie Brown and the gang in the new movie that is due to be released November 6. The question is whether the movie does the classic Charlie Brown justice or whether it’s a flop.
— Slate (@Slate) November 5, 2015
The reviews for The Peanuts Movie have started coming out and they are somewhat mixed, although overall mostly positive. The Guardian reports that the movie is good overall, a combination of smaller plots, some of which are better than others, but that capture the spirit of Charlie Brown fairly well.
On the other hand, The Globe and Mail has blatantly said that Charlie Brown has been ruined.
“While it’s naive to expect that any media property would stand exempt from the relentless grind of rebooting and revival (and perhaps especially a property as thoroughly franchised as the Peanuts comics), there’s something sad about seeing a character as sweet and simple as good ol’ Charlie Brown so totally ruined.”
— New York Times Arts (@nytimesarts) November 4, 2015
One thing to be grateful for in the new Charlie Brown movie is that they haven’t 21st-centuried it. Mashable reports that the kids don’t have today’s technology and that they haven’t brought today’s pop-culture references into the movie.
“The kids don’t suddenly have cell phones or social media. There are no winky pop-culture references or new characters wedged into the gang’s dynamic for inclusiveness’ sake. They aren’t trying to save the planet, or the town, or even one another (with the exception of Snoopy, whose WWI Flying Ace fantasy gets a good workout).”
Mashable also points out that even though the animation done by Fox’s Blue Sky Studio was done by computer so the characters were 3D, they stayed true to the simple lines of Schulz and the look of the original animation. They even used the original sounds of Snoopy and Woodstock, done by the late director Bill Melendez and taken from the original footage of the old cartoons. As for the voice work of the actors and actresses who played the characters, it was incredible. It appears that the creators of the new movie really did try to stay as true to the original Charlie Brown as possible.
If Charlie Brown has been around for so long, it would seem reasonable to assume everything there is to know about the lovable character is known, right? Well, maybe not. There are a number of things many people don’t know about the beloved classic and ScreenCrush tells all about it.
For instance, the first time the Peanuts appeared in animation was for an early commercial for Ford. When it came to A Charlie Brown Christmas, it was made in just six months and was the inspiration for both Frosty the Snowman and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas holiday specials. You Think You Know TV? has a special on what people might not know about Charlie Brown and the gang.
Overall, response to the new Charlie Brown movie has been very positive and there are plenty of tweets to prove it.
— Rotten Tomatoes (@RottenTomatoes) November 7, 2015
— Ryan W. Mead (@rwmead) November 7, 2015
— Bettie Cross (@Bettie_KEYETV) November 6, 2015
Would Charles Schulz be happy with The Peanuts Movie and the way Charlie Brown and his gang have been preserved? We will never know, but his son and grandson, Craig Schulz and Bryan Schulz, were producers on the movie, so they were there to keep the vision of the original Charlie Brown intact.
[Photo by Neilson Barnard / Getty Images]