After numerous attempts at live-action films, have animators finally found their groove when depicting a tale by the late, legendary Dr. Seuss? Or are the majority of professional reviewers correct in their belief that the subject matter is not expansive enough for a full-length feature?
Ted (voiced by Zac Efron) is a twelve year-old boy in the perfectly plastic metropolis of Thneedville. Everything in Thneedville is artificial and air itself is only available to those who pay for it. Ted (Efron), more than anything, wants to impress Audrey. Audrey (voiced by Taylor Swift) wants to see a real tree, but all the ones in Thneedville are electric and powered by batteries. Some even come equipped with a disco function utilizing music and mirrored balls. Ted asks his family where he might find a tree and his grandmother (voiced by Betty White) says that if he wants to know about trees he'll have to venture outside of town and ask the Once-ler. The Once-ler (voiced by Ed Helms) is a hermit who never leaves his house and refuses to even speak to visitors until his very specific, very peculiar demands are met. Once they are, he begins to recount the epic tale of his arrival in the forest and eventual introduction to its protector and advocate The Lorax (voiced by Danny DeVito).
In such politically-charged times, there'll no doubt be critics who decry this film as preachy or anti-business. Perhaps if I held beliefs similar to said critics, I might agree. As I don't hold such beliefs, what I saw was highly entertaining and even hilarious. I'm no fan of Zac Efron or Taylor Swift, but they were up to the task and while Danny DeVito might not have been the best choice, in my opinion, he managed. If you have young children, this film is a must-see that you might actually enjoy and if you don't have children, who knows? You might just enjoy it anyway. I did.