Friday, October 28, 2011

Puss in Boots

Have you ever wanted to know the backstory and continuing adventures of fabled characters like Puss in Boots, Humpty Dumpty, Jack and Jill, Jack & the Beanstalk, and the goose that lays golden eggs?  No of course you didn't, because you're an adult.  And since I am as well, I really didn't have much interest in this 'Shrek' spin-off featuring the voice of Antonio Banderas as the titular character and Salma Hayek as his partner in crime and feline crush.  But, in the right frame of mind, and for the right audience, it's really not bad.

I really like Banderas because he understands that a suave lead who gets the joke is better than one who doesn't, as he's shown splendidly in 'Four Rooms' and the 'Spy Kids' series.  He could easily take himself too seriously, but he smartly does not.  And even before I knew Hayek was in the film, I thought to myself, this film could really use Salma Hayek.  And then there she was.  That's good casting.  Zach Galifianakis, Billy Bob Thornton, Amy Sedaris also round out the cast and are all satisfactory.  Furthermore, the score and the 3D work to keep it from being a snoozefest even at times when it drags a bit.  So I think this is one of the better family films of the year that parents can still appreciate, about on the same level as 'Rango', but not as good as 'Rio'.

Grade: B-

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