• Saira D.

Welcome to December ft. "The Nutcracker & the Four Realms"!

Happy December readers! Can you believe we’ve already entered the magical month of holiday cheer and Christmas movies until January 1st? To kick December off with classic holiday features, FLIX presents Lasse Hallström and Joe Johnston’s 2018 The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. This Disney twist on a Christmas classic based off E.T.A. Hoffman’s 1816 The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, brings viewers fantastic special effects that truly make you feel as though you’ve fallen into a Christmas fairytale world, sets or at least CGI backgrounds that truly emulate the holiday spirit, a star-studded cast but then again… Disney, a very interesting plot twist to add to this twisted take on The Nutcracker and, we get it all for under two hours – which, in these modern days is a definite gift!

First off, let’s talk all things wonders and wonderful! As soon as the film starts, we are thrown into Christmas Eve where of course, we have a grand dinner party at the protagonist Clara’s godfather’s Manor. The Manor whose owner is played by no other than Morgan Freeman, is exquisitely luxurious (as most things were back when The Nutcracker is set to take place) and riddled with holiday décor. The setting alone makes you feel the magic of Christmas, without making you feel as though Christmas is just around the corner since it’s only December 3rd folks! But how is that so if the film takes place on Christmas Eve? Luckily for us, the film very quickly moves to another setting, a setting containing four such realms: The Land of Sweets, The Land of Amusement, The Land of Flowers, and The Land of Snowflakes. Here we spend most of the film and it’s brilliant because the landscapes and architecture are so beautiful one could even say… magical! And of course, what is The Nutcracker or the holidays really without, The Nutcracker Ballet? Overall The Nutcracker and the Four Realms provides a very poignant appearance filled with all things naughty and nice, Christmas wonder and the kind of warmth only candlelight and Christmas lights can emit.

Next, we have our Christmas star… studded cast and the plot twist ending that truly fooled me when I first watched this film! So we already know Morgan Freeman is Clara’s godfather, but let’s talk about some rulers, specifically in the realms of The Land of Sweets and Amusement. Sugar Plum who rules The Land of Sweets is played by Keira Knightly and Mother Ginger from the Land of Amusements is no other than Helen Mirren. What the casting alone tells me is that this film will be great for all ages, because everyone in any age group knows and pretty well loves Morgan Freeman, Keira Knightley, and Helen Mirren! These seasoned actors bring the best to their roles whether they’re antagonists or protagonists, which honestly makes you believe in their joy or rage so much more than you’d probably feel with any other actor with less experience – and I’m here for it! Which perfectly sets us up to delve into the plot twist this Nutcracker-with­-a­-twist film contains. Avoiding any spoilers, The Nutcracker story tells us to keep believing in our dreams and that things are not always as they appear to be (like when your toys come to life) – a message that parallels right back onto this new Nutcracker story and its characters. We come to learn and discover so much on Clara’s quest for discovery and truth Christmas Eve night, and it’s a magical whirlwind ride to get swept into in December. So without further ado, get the Christmas candles lit, open Disney+, and start the sleigh ride to Christmas with Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.

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