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Trailer Watch: The Adventures of Tintin

The uncanny valley rears its head in the new teaser for the motion captured Hergé adaptation, The Adventures of Tintin (previously subtitled, Secret of the Unicorn) from director Stephen Spielberg and producer Peter Jackson, sporting a script by the current Dr. Who head writer Steven Moffat and Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish. The film stars Jamie Bell at Tintin, Daniel Craig, Andy Serkis, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Gad Elmaleh, Toby Jones and Mackenzie Crook.

It’s probably telling that they avoided any shots with people talking (at least with synced sound); every motion-captured effort I’ve seen to date has, at best, looked a bit dodgy once the figures are in motion. At their worst, they look like corpses with sticks shoved up their bums, bouncing around like mop puppets. And while this certainly looks better than that, I can’t say I’m crazy about the too-“realistic” character designs. But then, I’m biased — I adore the original comics, and I had hoped for a less photoreal, more stylized approach to the motion capture. I don’t think it’s an inherently bad technique, just that it hasn’t yet been used well. (Yes, I saw Beowulf.)

Those of you who aren’t as attached to the originals: what do you think?

The Adventures of Tintin hits theaters on December 23rd.

8 Responses to “Trailer Watch: The Adventures of Tintin”

  1. Well, that close up shot at the end makes Tintin look like the kid from Cabaret that sings “Tomorrow belongs to me”, and that can`t be good….

  2. Not sure how I feel about the look. But I am more than willing to give it a chance, just based on who’s involved in it.

    • Yeah, there’s almost no question that the script will be good, and the cast is spectacular. If I have to close my eyes and imagine a better-looking movie, I will, but I’d sure love for the visuals to convince me once I’m sitting down in the theater.

  3. Adam L. Cox says:

     I am absolutely appalled by this.  There was no need whatsoever to make this film motion capture. In fact, I would go so far as to say a motion-capture Tintin is the polar opposite of Herge’s lovely books. Which, yes, made my childhood bearable.

  4. And just what is a ship doing running under full sail in a storm like that? Credibility fail. Whill filmmakers never learn?

  5. Rob Wilson says:

     I just don’t understand why they wouldn’t make Tintin a traditionally-animated feature. It’s right there. 

    In my mind, it’d look somewhere between a late-model Miyazaki film such as Ponyo (which was pretty, though dull) and those old Babar cartoons with the watercolor backgrounds.

  6. […] work a camera — apparently, even a virtual one — and I think I can get over it for two hours. The first trailer piqued my interest, but this new one actually shows characters talking and interacting more, and […]