How to make a festive classic

The Grinch is the best present you can give the family this Christmas!

 Goodwill is overrated. Sure, there’s a time for snuggling up with your family and watching cockle-warming festive classics, but admit it: you’d all secretly love to change channels and see Joe Pesci being blowtorched in Home Alone or Will Ferrell getting drop-kicked by an irate dwarf in Elf.

When it comes to Christmas movies, naughty is nice, bad is good and wicked is better. And as a new 3D-animated take of The Grinch hits ODEON cinemas on 9 November, we take a closer look at why this anarchic romp guarantees a cool Christmas. 

Take a bonkers kids’ book…

Back in 1957, Random House published a children’s storybook called How The Grinch Stole Christmas – and promptly sparked a global phenomenon.

The author behind those madcap rhymes – Theodor ‘Dr Seuss’ Geisel – had already made his name with zany texts like The Cat in the Hat, but the Grinch was the first time he’d chosen a villain for his lead character, in a tale that broke the mould of children’s literature by exploring the darkness behind the twinkle of Christmas.


…add a deliciously wicked anti-hero…

Dr Seuss once revealed that he dreamt up the Grinch after looking at his own haggard reflection in the bathroom mirror. From there, the character virtually wrote itself: a green, mean, cave-dwelling hermit who hates Christmas and everyone who celebrates it in the local town of Whoville.

As one critic wrote, the Grinch is “easily the best Christmas cad since Scrooge” – and we reckon even Charles Dickens’ invention might tell this foul-tempered furball to lighten up. 


Throw in an all-star cast…

Jim Carrey’s rubber-faced turn as the Grinch in the 2000 movie is a tough act to follow. But given that he’s aced all of cinema’s most iconic roles – from Hamlet to Sherlock Holmes – it shouldn’t surprise you that Emmy-winning British screen god Benedict Cumberbatch is up to the job.

Want more stardust? Well, you might recognise Cinema’s grande dame, Angela Lansbury, as the mayor of Whoville, the smooth flow of rap star Pharrell Williams as the narrator – not to mention the spidery soundtrack work of Danny Elfman and Tyler The Creator. 

…and some smirksome gags…

Universal Pictures and Illumination haven’t messed with the classic plot, which finds the Grinch plotting to ruin Christmas with the help of his long-suffering pet dog, Max.

But even Dr Seuss can’t equal the frenetic gag-rate from the team behind Sing and Despicable Me, as the Grinch demolishes snowmen, batters kids with snowballs and flies a runaway drone into his own face. You’ll be ho-ho-ho-ing harder than Santa.

And top it all off with a kid-friendly moral

Granted, a surly, snarling, shag-haired monster might not seem like the best role model for your kids.

But rest assured that for all its snarky humour, The Grinch will teach the whole family a valuable lesson about companionship and the true meaning of the festive season, melting your heart like a snowball on a radiator and leaving you counting down to the big day. 

Get your Christmas on at ODEON cinemas from 9 November…

NHS Test and Trace
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