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The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: a beautiful disaster

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The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: a beautiful disaster

Poster for the movie at the Isis movie theater.

Poster for the movie at the Isis movie theater.

Photo by Kristen Spang

Poster for the movie at the Isis movie theater.

Photo by Kristen Spang

Photo by Kristen Spang

Poster for the movie at the Isis movie theater.

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With its dazzling scenery and mystical characters, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms is a must-see for kids and parents. The film, directed by Lasse Hallstrom and Joe Johnston, takes on a unique perspective of the traditional ballet and incorporates an imaginative outlook on the characters.

Mackenzie Foy, who is known for her role as Renesmee from the Twilight Saga, took on the leading role of Clara in this children’s film. She was joined by Kiera Knightly, Morgan Freeman, and Jayden Fowara-Knight–who played the nutcracker.

Clara (Foy) finds herself in a different world when a gold string leads her through the house of her Godfather, Drosselmeyer (Freeman). She meets the nutcracker soldier, Philip Hoffman (Fowara-Knight) here, who helps her. After some convincing, he allows her to go to where the mouse went and is soon met by the mouse king who is quite literally made up of mice. While their Mother Ginger (Helen Mirren), who is the ruler of the fourth realm and is companions with the mouse king, tries to capture Clara but is unsuccessful. Philip and Clara then go to the palace where Clara meets the other three rulers, Sugar Plum, ruler of the land of sweets; Shiver, ruler of the land of snowflakes; and Hawthorne, ruler of the land of flowers. The only ruler that is incorporated from the ballet is Sugar Plum, but her voice is so shrill and annoying it will make you want to rip your ears off.

The film incorporates ballet to tell the story of how Clara’s mother found the four realms that she travels through. However, it doesn’t remotely relate to any aspect of the ballet and there are miscellaneous characters that contributed nothing to the film. They included Mother Ginger who was poorly developed and had no relation to the ballet. Some scenes can come as a surprise for the audience, and the mouse king could be quite disturbing and disgusting to children because he is just a mass of mice. Just like the ballet, the ending includes a battle with the Nutcracker and Clara both involved. A few predictable twists occur throughout the movie and when looking for a casual movie it would be best to move on from this one and let the kids watch it instead.

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