This all-time classic now has Horton Hears a Who!
on the same video for a great double bill.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
To heck with the kids--this is one of the best holiday presents you can give yourself. Adapted from the children's book by Dr. Seuss, this charming story is one to watch every holiday season. It is just edgy enough to help you forget the more cloying aspects of Christmas, yet it is also sweet enough to remind you of the reason for all that holiday cheer. Animation genius Chuck Jones directed this 1966 television production featuring the voice of Boris Karloff as the mean greenie. Bitter and selfish, the Grinch decides to steal Christmas away from the Whos, the sweet little folk who live at the bottom of his mountain home. When little Cindy Loo Who returns his hateful act with kindness, she melts the old miser's heart. There are many reasons to watch this: inventive wordplay, Karloff's impressive narration, and a very memorable soundtrack. --Rochelle O'Gorman
Horton Hears a Who!
Chuck Jones was chief animator on this lively adaptation of the famous book by Dr. Seuss. The story of a friendly elephant named Horton who discovers--deep inside a daisy--a tiny city called Whoville with tiny, intelligent residents--this film (fleshed out a bit from the source) is strong on character and has striking, appealing visuals. The little folks of Whoville, with their natural air of aristocracy, are a kick, and when they come to see Horton as a hero for his democratic view of all life big and small, the effect is quite touching. This should be a real treat for kids already familiar with the book, and just might inspire those who haven't read it to pick it up. --Tom Keogh
Without a new cover or much fanfare, this new edition of the hallowed Christmas film has several additional extras. Best is TNT's 25-minute documentary from 1996. Phil Hartman hosts this easy-going look at the history and creation of Grinch
. Composer Albert Hague and vocalist Thurl Ravenscroft are featured in more detail in a shorter featurette, "Songs in the Key of Grinch." The commentary by animator Phil Roman and voice actress June Foray (Cindy Low Who) is trivial. The quality of the digital enhancement is not as wonderful as expected. Color definition is better, as are the cuts between scenes. While some dirt has been cleaned up, the print is still not pristine by any means. --Doug Thomas