Director Robert Zemeckis
Written by Robert Zemeckis, Chris Weitz, Carlo Collodi (original story)
Tom Hanks, Cynthia Ervio, Lewin Lloyd, Luke Evans, Voice cast – Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Benjain Evan Ainsworth, Lorrain Bracco, Keegan-Michael Key.
Remake of the classic cartoon, has widowed clockmaker and woodcarver Geppetto make a marionette of a young boy, based on his late son, and names him Pinocchio. One night, when the narrator of the story Jiminy Cricket enters his shop, Geppetto makes a wish for the boy to become real – and he does. A visit from the Blue Fairy (Ervio), gives Jiminy the task of being Pinocchio’s conscience.
Pinocchio then has a series of adventures (similar to those in the original cartoon).
Let’s start by saying that no, this was not a good film.
Firstly Hanks is severely miscast as Geppetto, and despite this does a fair job at playing on screen alone in the scenes he is in – as most of the time he is playing against computer animation.
In regards to the computer animation, it is quite poor at times, and there are some moments where live actors are playing against Pinocchio – it appears clunky (especially when characters are holding Pinocchio).
Live action characters (and actors who play them) are either underused completely (like the Oscar nominated Ervio and Luke Evans who has a blink and you’ll miss it role) – or are caricatures of what they should be (like Stromboli and Lampwick). Accents of these characters are inconsistent throughout the entire film as well.
It is quite dark at times (literally dark, not figuratively) so it is hard to see what is happening in some scenes too. Important ‘figurative’ dark moments feel almost toned down from the original to this too, which considering this is almost half an hour longer, means there is poor pacing, and there could have been many moments that could have been edited.
One big up is the voice cast, especially that of Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket (Ainsworth and Gordon-Levitt) who are outstanding. There are some humorous movie references within Geppetto’s clocks too.
Disney continues to think we need these live action remakes. We don’t.