Rise_The_Guardian_Character_Posters_Give_Fuller_Looks_Legends_1339606054I’ve had quite a good run of animation films for kids recently – ParaNorman and Despicable Me 2 spring to mind (but of Hotel Transylvania we shall not speak). And I’m pleased to say that Rise of the Guardians, while not quite as strong as the others, was a pleasant addition to the list of successes.

IMDb in its infinite wisdom describes the set-up thusly:

When the evil spirit Pitch launches an assault on Earth, the Immortal Guardians team up to protect the innocence of children all around the world

Which is not really the main thrust of the film, which sees all of this through the eyes of Jack Frost who at the beginning of the film has just come into being, with no past that he can remember and a bit of a lax attitude to things because the kids can’t see him so he generally mucks about and causes chaos.

But when Pitch launches his evilness Jack is made into a Guardian and has to work alongside the others to protect the dreams and ideals of children from nightmares and general horribleness.

Of course this is a sort of coming of age tale as Jack discovers his strengths and why being a loner is not necessarily a good thing and how he came to be who he is now.

And of course we learn lots of uplifting moral lessons while we watch the story unfold.

And of course it has a happy ending because that’s the way these things work.

But it’s also great fun and the artwork is lovely and the characterisations were great. All of the Guardians were wonderfully designed and all of the voices work. My particular favourites were the Sandman (who doesn’t actually say anything at all) and the Easter Bunny given voice by Hugh Jackman as an all-Australian hardass with an impressive collection of weaponry while still being a bit of a softie inside.

A really enjoyable family film.