Christopher Robin takes a little while to get going and might have trouble finding an audience, but it's a sweet family movie nonetheless.
Director: Marc Forster
Summary: A working-class family man, Christopher Robin, encounters his childhood friend Winnie-the-Pooh, who helps him to rediscover the joys of life.
Disney continues its trend toward world domination remaking all of its classic properties with Christopher Robin. However, unlike the other remakes that have come out so far, this one is less of a retelling as it is a sequel. We follow an adult Christopher Robin (Ewan McGregor) and his quest to regain his childhood.
While this is a good story to tell an adult, it's a little harder to make it appeal to a child. The first half of the movie is very focused on Christopher growing up and becoming an overworked father. That sort of thing is hard to make interesting for a kid, and the first half of the movie suffers for it. That's not to say that it's bad — it's just a little slow.
Once Christopher makes it back to the Hundred Acre Wood, the movie turns around and becomes the more kids-geared flick we've been seeing in the trailers. There are some fantastic moments that will really get to the adults in the movie, and the best laughs comes from the various animals saying fantastic one-liners — Eeyore being one of the standouts.
That very Winnie-the-Pooh message of the importance of family and acceptance is the thing that really brings the movie together. It takes a little too long to set up, though, when it really feels like it could have been handled in the already overly long prologue. The movie we see in the trailers is in here, and once it gets there it's great, but it does beg the question of whether there was enough material here for a full movie or just a short. The setup is important and does make the point hit home a little harder, but it might be at the cost of alienating a portion of the audience.
Christopher Robin is a cute and fun family film once the overly long first act ends. While it takes a little time to get there, when the animals show up and we start that portion of the plot, it gets a lot better. Whether or not that structure decision hurts the movie with its audience has yet to be seen.