“Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who” – Susan Granger reviews

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Thanks to Blue Sky, the White Plains, New York- based, award-winning animation studio that rivals Pixar/Disney and DreamWorks, this feature-length adaptation of one of Theodore Geisel’s most beloved tales is absolutely glorious family entertainment.

“On the fifteenth of May, in jungle of Nool, in the heat of the day, in the cool of the pool, he was splashing…enjoying the jungle’s great joys…When Horton the elephant heard a small noise,” begins CBS’ broadcaster Charles Osgood who, as narrator, makes the most of the playfully rhyming text.

That ‘noise’ heard by Horton (voiced by Jim Carrey) turns out to be a faint cry for help emanating from a tiny speck of dust floating through the air. It seems that particle houses an entire city named Who-ville, inhabited by microscopic Whos, led by their Mayor (voiced by Steve Carrell). And they’re in danger! So despite being ridiculed and threatened by doubters – Vlad the Eagle (voiced by Will Arnett) and Kangaroo (voiced by Carol Burnett) – Horton, on the advice of Morton the Mouse (voiced by Seth Rogen), is determined to save them – because “a person’s a person, no matter how small.”

Directed by Jimmy Howard and Steve Martino, Blue Sky’s computer animation captures Dr. Seuss’ weird world, particularly the massive clover field in which sweetly sincere Horton must find the tiny speck.

While Dr. Seuss is served better by animation than live-action (“How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” “The Cat in the Hat”), the plot’s really too thin so it’s been gently padded with hip, G-rated slapstick comedy by Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio (“College Road Trip”).

On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, “Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who!” is a wacky, wondrous 10 – bountiful fun for children of all ages.

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Susan Granger

Susan Granger is a product of Hollywood. Her natural father, S. Sylvan Simon, was a director and producer at R.K.O., M.G.M. and Columbia Pictures; her adoptive father, Armand Deutsch, produced movies at M.G.M. As a child, Susan appeared in movies with Abbott & Costello, Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, Margaret O'Brien and Lassie. She attended Mills College in California, studying journalism with Pierre Salinger, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, Phi Beta Kappa, with highest honors in journalism. During her adult life, Susan has been on radio and television as an anchorwoman and movie/drama critic. Her newspaper reviews have been syndicated around the world, and she has appeared on American Movie Classics cable television. In addition, her celebrity interviews and articles have been published in REDBOOK, PLAYBOY, FAMILY CIRCLE, COSMOPOLITAN, WORKING WOMAN and THE NEW YORK TIMES, as well as in PARIS MATCH, ELLE, HELLO, CARIBBEAN WORLD, ISLAND LIFE, MACO DESTINATIONS, NEWS LIMITED NEWSPAPERS (Australia), UK DAILY MAIL, UK SUNDAY MIRROR, DS (France), LA REPUBBLICA (Italy), BUNTE (Germany), VIP TRAVELLER (Krisworld) and many other international publications through SSG Syndicate. Susan also lectures on the "Magic and Mythology of Hollywood" and "Don't Take It Personally: Conquering Criticism and other Survival Skills," originally published on tape by Dove Audio.