How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000): Christmas in July 2020

Hello and welcome to the penultimate day and final guest post of the seventh annual Christmas in July Blogathon. The last guest of the blogathon is the blogger who has participated in every year of the Christmas in July Blogathon so far, Rob from MovieRob. Rob has thousands of reviews on his blog and participates in blogathons across the blogosphere, as well as hosting a monthly Genre Grandeur feature, where a specific film genre is selected by a blogger and that genre is highlighted by other bloggers. No matter your taste in film, chances are Rob has reviews for you. Today, he reviews the Jim Carrey version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) movie poster“The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there – on such short notice! Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn’t allow it. 4:00, wallow in self pity; 4:30, stare into the abyss; 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one; 5:30, jazzercize; 6:30, dinner with me – I can’t cancel that again; 7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing… I’m booked. Of course, if I bump the loathing to 9, I could still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear? ” – The Grinch

Number of Times Seen – 1 (14 Jul 2020)

Brief Synopsis – An outcast from Whoville who lives in a cave away from town tries to make the town miss Christmas by stealing all of the presents and decorations.

My Take on it – When Drew announced that he would once again be doing a Christmas in July Blogathon, I immediately signed up since it always gives me an excuse to try and find a Christmas film to watch that I had never seen before.

This year I chose this film because, I have been putting off watching this movie for two decades and I figured that it was about time to check it out.

As a kid, I read the book by Dr. Seuss numerous times and even saw the animated version that would be shown on TV every year.

This unfortunately is quite an ineffective adaptation of the story and doesn’t work at all.

They try far too hard to try and give this movie a more emotional meaning to the events that take place, yet in the end it doesn’t allow the story to flow at all.

This, in part, is due to the excessive amount of exposition added here that wasn’t part of the original version and makes the story unbearable to watch.

Jim Carrey is truly the best part of this film and it is easy to see that he was born to play this character.

When he is in his make-up, he is transformed into the character.

There is no question in my mind that they were quite deserving of winning an Oscar for Make-up for the work done here because it is so genuine and realistic looking.

The story has a great message about Christmas and about family time, but it all seems bogged down by the attempt to create a strange new world for the character to inhabit.

Ultimately tho, the world they envisioned feels far too creepy for its own good.

I suggest that if one wants to see this story done right, read the book or watch the animated special from the 60’s.

Bottom Line – Pretty ineffective adaptation of the classic Dr. Seuss book. This film tries too hard to give a more emotional meaning to everything that transpires but in the end it takes away from the flow of the story because there is far too much exposition than is needed to make this story work.  The best part of this film is Carrey who seems truly born to play this character. The makeup he uses helps transform him into this notable Christmas grouch. They definitely deserved their Oscar for Makeup because it looks so much more genuine than one might expect. The story’s message about Christmas is somewhat lost in the overbearing attempt to create a strange new world for these characters to inhabit.  Stick to the original book or the TV special from the 60’s.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The scene where the Grinch is directing his dog, Max (Kelley), before stealing Christmas, is Jim Carrey making fun of producer and director Ron Howard, imitating his style of directing. Howard found the scene hilarious, and decided to include it in this movie. (From IMDB)

Rating – Razzie Worthy (4/10)


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Rob’s guest to the party is the 90s rom-com queen herself, Meg Ryan.

Thank you Rob for joining in the blogathon once again!

Tomorrow is the final day of the blogathon, which will be closed out by yours truly.

Until next time, cheers!

Movie Quote of the Week – 12/8/17

Answer to MWL 12/6/17: The Narrator (Boris Karloff (voice)) – How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

Narrator: But this, this sound wasn’t sad. Why, this sound sounded glad! Every Who down in Whoville, the tall and the small, was singing, without any presents at all. He hadn’t stopped Christmas from coming, it came. Somehow or other, it came just the same. And the Grinch with his Grinch feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling.
The Grinch: How could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. it came without packages, boxes or bags!
Narrator: He puzzled and puzzed ’til his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. ‘Maybe Christmas,’ he thought, ‘doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.‘ What happened then? Well, in Whoville they say that the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day.

Thanks for everyone’s submissions and a roast beast to the following people for answering correctly:

Kim (Tranquil Dreams)
Tom (Plain, Simple Tom Reviews)
Rob (Movierob)

Christmas in July Blogathon 2015: How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

Well here we are! The Christmas in July Blogathon has arrived.  To kick us off, Steve from Movie Movie Blog Blog reviews the 1966 TV special How the Grinch Stole Christmas.  This is one that I usually watch at least once every holiday season, as I’m sure rings true for many people.  Now, onto you Steve!

grinchBy any standard — and certainly compared to Jim Carrey’s torturous 2000 movie remake — the 1966 TV-special version of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” still holds up beautifully. I know adults who can recite entire scenes by heart. Veteran cartoon director Chuck Jones knew he had tapped into something special. In an interview I had with him a few years ago (sorry, I have to toot my own horn here–see the interview at my blog), he told how he understood the importance of audience identification. “Everyone hates Christmas a little,” he said. “To find a character who ‘hates Christmas a lot’ is a real find!”

And he was right. As the children who saw this special as a kid (yours truly included) grow older, they are assaulted by the same commercialization that Charlie Brown complained about in his own Christmas special. Thus, it unfortunately becomes very easy to identify with this Grinch who plots to steal Christmas from an entire town and dump it off a nearby mountain 50,000 feet high.

maxPerhaps it’s this very grim take on a beloved holiday that saves this special from the sugariness that sapped the life from future Dr. Seuss specials. Even though The Grinch’s dog Max (a continuing victim in Grinch’s plotting) and Cindy-Lou Who (to whom The Grinch, dressed as Santa Claus, blatantly lies) tread the border of treacliness, we never forget that that nasty old Grinch is the main character in this story.

cindy-louMuch of this is helped along by superb voice characterizations. Boris Karloff gives the perfect bite to The Grinch’s voice, and he also narrates the story wonderfully. And Thurl Ravenscroft, best known as the voice of Tony the Tiger in Kellogg’s TV commercials, immortalized the song “You’re a Mean One, Mister Grinch” for a generation of cartoon-lovers. (If you ever get a chance, listen to the Whirling Dervishes’ alternative take on this gem.)

Many of the Christmas specials we loved as kids, sadly, don’t hold up so well for us in later years. (This is probably a minority opinion, but for me, the Rankin/Bass version of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” sounds like it was recorded in a lavatory.) The Grinch, perhaps because he started out so old to start with, never seems dated.

Thanks, Steve! And with that, we are officially underway! Next up is Tim with an interesting and unique entry. Check back for that later today.

Movie Quote of the Week – 12/19/14

Answer to MWL 12/17/14: The Grinch (Jim Carrey) – How the Grinch Stole Christmas

The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there, on such short notice! Even if I wanted to go, my schedule wouldn’t allow it. 1:00, wallow in self pity. 4:30, stare into the abyss. 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one. 5:30, jazzercise. 6:30, dinner with me. I can’t cancel that again. 7:00, wrestle with myself-loathing. I’m booked! Of course if I bumped the loathing to 9, I can still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. -The Grinch

The following people answered correctly: