On Christmas Eve, a little girl named Marie (Cohen) falls asleep after a party at her home and dreams herself (or does she?) into a fantastic world where toys become larger than life. Her ...
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The colorful holiday classic is finally brought to the big screen, designed by famed children's story author and artist Maurice Sendak, and written for the first time to be as close as ... See full summary »
It is Christmas Eve, and the Stahlbaum family is happily unwrapping their Christmas gifts. After all the merriment, seven-year-old Marie receives a very special gift--a mysterious ... See full summary »
A cowardly boy, who buries himself in accident statistics, enters a library to escape a storm, only to be transformed into an animated illustration by the Pagemaster. He has to work through obstacles from classic books to return to real-life.
On Christmas Eve, a little girl named Marie (Cohen) falls asleep after a party at her home and dreams herself (or does she?) into a fantastic world where toys become larger than life. Her beloved Nutcracker (Culkin) comes to life and defends her from the Mouse King, then is turned into a Prince after Marie saves his life.Written by
This version of the ballet, an adaptation of the famous George Balanchine staging presented annually in New York City, is the only well-known American production of "The Nutcracker" to use children in the roles of Marie (known as Clara in most versions) and the Nutcracker/Prince, so the roles are not choreographed to be as technically demanding as in other productions of the ballet. The original 1892 Russian production also used children. Several other productions, including the recent Helgi Tomasson one for the San Francisco Ballet, have taken their cue from Balanchine and cast a little girl in the role of Clara, but in the Tomasson version, Clara is magically transformed into an adult in Act II so that she can dance the pas de deux with the Prince (danced in the Tomasson production by an adult). Many other productions (especially Russian ones) now cast adults as the Nutcracker/Prince and the girl, usually known as Clara rather than Marie, so that there is an adult love interest between the couple. See more »
This is the Stahlbaums' house. These are their children, Marie and Fritz. It was Christmas Eve, when there was always a big family party. The children had been waiting and waiting for their guests to arrive. The house was full of rich, wonderful smells of baking, chocolate, and peppermint sticks.
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In the opening credits, Macaulay Culkin is listed as playing Drosselmeier's nephew, but he is not listed as playing either The Nutcracker or The Prince. See more »
This 1993 Balanchine version is not as good as the 1985, 1989, 1994, 2001 and 2009 productions, all of which are just magical and entirely captivating. It is however superior to the self-indulgent Maurice Bejart, incoherent Mariinsky(the worst version) and dull 2012 Mariinsky productions. I found myself rather mixed on the whole on this version. There were things I didn't like, all of which have been said before. The sound effects really do distract from the music and quite frankly were not needed. The Nutcracker's make-up and costume looked ridiculous, I actually asked myself was there any particular reason for it to be this particular colour scheme? Macaulay Culkin is rather stiff as the Nutcracker(and I do agree he overdoes the smirking too much), and there is some overacting from Drosselmeyer. However, I did like the rest of the costumes,- well maybe except for Sugar Plum Fairy's tights- the production is well lit and the sets were enchanting. The photography was fine I thought, I highly doubt there'll be a Nutcracker production as poorly shot as the 2012 Mariinsky version. The effects are not the best I've seen but are serviceable. The music has a lot of tinkering but is still timeless and beautiful, typical Tchaikovsky really. It is lovingly performed by the orchestra and the tempos are well chosen. I do love the story, always have, and on the most part the production is faithful to the ballet, with some touches like Marie sneaking downstairs, falling asleep on the sofa and then dreaming of Nutcracker and Drosselmeyer. The choreography is outstanding, with Balanchine's musicality and style all over it, the standouts being the Soldier Doll, Snowflakes, Arabian and Waltz of the Flowers dances. Culkin aside, the dancing was exemplary complete with an impeccable Corps De Ballet. Overall, problematic but does have a number of things to warrant it a partial recommendation. 6/10 Bethany Cox
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