The Lorax / Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax
Director: Chris Renaud, Kyle Balda
Cast: Zac Efron, Danny DeVito, Ed Helms, Taylor Swift, Rob Riggle, Betty White, Jenny Slate
To impress a girl, 12-year-old Ted ventures outside the artificial town of Thneedville to find a real truffula tree. There he meets Once-ler, who tells him a sad story of the time when all the trees were cut down. This animation is expanded from Dr. Seuss’ 1971 children’s book, and it has a strong ecological and anticonsumerist message. However, this grim doom-mongering doesn’t sit well next to the cutesy slapstick and chirpy songs. In fact the film itself is a prime example of a disposable consumer product that nobody needs. It has some enjoyable comedy moments, but the title character is oddly useless. Lorax is a magical creature who speaks for the trees, and that is all he does for them.