“The Lorax” Blu-Ray/DVD Review
Kidzworld gives you the deets on this sweet, tree-hugging movie now out on home video.
By: Lynn Barker
What if you lived in an all-plastic world? No trees anywhere except plastic ones and to get oxygen (which real trees help make) you had to buy it? Kinda would suck! Based on the popular Dr. Seuss book, The Lorax centers upon a magical creature who speaks on behalf of trees!
Story Goes: Tween Ted (voice of Zac Efron) lives in the plastic town of Thneedville where he’s crushin’ on pretty (voice of Taylor Swift). He keeps “losing” toys in her yard as an excuse to get close to her. When she says all she wants in the world is a real tree, Ted makes it his mission to get her one. Nobody ever goes outside Thneedville but Ted manages to escape only to discover a horrible polluted, plantless world where, as his granny (voice of Betty White) has told him, he must ask a person named The Once-Ler about what happened to the trees.
The Once-Ler tells Ted the story of how he, the inventor of the thneed (an all-purpose knit scarf/rag/you-name-it) first made friends with The Lorax (voice of Danny DeVito), protector of the trees in a beautiful valley then betrayed him and all the forest animals by chopping down every tree there in order to meet the huge demand for his product which was made from the fibers of the trees.
Despite being chased by Mr. O’Hare, who sells air in Thneedville and doesn’t want any tree to ever live again, Ted manages to get the complete story from the Once-Ler and take the seed of the very last Truffula tree back to town.
With the help of his family and Audrey, Ted is able to discredit O’Hare and plant the tree in the town square. Once the townspeople see the destroyed world outside, they are happy to let the seed grow and the world is reforested.
Special Features: There are lots of fun features on this Blu-Ray/DVD combo set.
“3 Mini Movies”-These are “Wagon Ho”, “Forces of Nature” and “Serenade”. All feature the Lorax and/or the adorable forest animals in various cute adventures. I like “Serenade” best since it involves some fun dancing and singing.
“Making of the Mini Movies” – The directors and producer talk about how a couple of the little shorts were made from ideas cut out of the longer feature film etc. Interesting.
“Deleted Scene” – from the feature movie focuses on a cute cat who gets caught in a discarded thneed. Funny
“Expedition of Truffula Valley” – This featurette allows you to pick several locations featured in the animated film and explore. You get character descriptions, storyboards, concept art and videos. You can draw along as animator Mark O’Hare guides you through creating cute, fat bear Lou. Hey, my sketch didn’t look too bad!
“Seuss to Screen” explores how the original Dr. Seuss story and artwork helped inspire filmmakers. Zac Efron, Taylor Swift and Danny DeVito talk a bit and you see how the flat Lorax became the fluffy fella in the movie. Cute but could have used more with Zac and Taylor!
Games – You get “The Once-Ler’s Wagon” in which you pick items to see little shorts using each one. Best for younger viewers. “Get Out of Town” is way more challenging as you use your controller keys to “jump” Ted and his motorbike over various obstacles as he tries to escape the city. There are several levels and it took me forever but you may be better at it. Everybody should enjoy this one. “Truffula Run” features the Lorax as you move him around to avoid obstacles and gain points. Fun for most ages.
“Let It Grow Singalong” is what it sounds like with words on the bottom of the screen.
“My Scenes” lets you bookmark your fave scenes in the movie.
“Feature Commentary” is the two directors telling you tons of details on why and how they made decisions throughout the movie. Really talky and interesting but watch the film without it first. These guys (or one of them anyway) talk a lot!
Wrapping Up: The Lorax is a very sweet movie with a great theme.. each one of us has to make a decision to do things to protect our environment before corporate greed and careless people destroy it. There are some enjoyable extra features and a few fun games for repeat play. Although the film might be more geared to younger kids than was Despicable Me by the same animators, it is fun for everyone and well worth adding to your home entertainment collection!