New Grinch tops previous Christmas renditions


Hannah Darbro, Fielder Friday Editor

When remaking any movie, producers run the risk of changing too much of the plot and alienating people who reminisce on the original because it invokes memories of childhood.
Based on the Dr. Seuss book published in 1957, How the Grinch Stole Christmas was released as a 25-minute cartoon in 1966. It was then remade in 2000 and again in 2018. The 2000 version is the most different visually as it is the only movie of the three to portray the Grinch in a live-action movie, rather than cartoon.
The 1966 Grinch most closely resembles Dr. Seuss’ other movies on almost every level, from the no-frills animation to the rhyming, almost poetic diction. This classic movie offers the most basic plot of the three and would be the easiest for young children to follow.
However, the 1966 might not be the best to introduce to younger siblings first though. 1960’s Grinch is almost scary. The Grinch is not content with just stealing Christmas in Whoville; he steals the Who’s ice cubes from the fridge, unscrews lightbulbs and pulls petals off a poinsettia plant. The Grinch in this version is very clearly a menace and out to destroy the joy of the unknowing citizens of Whoville.
The newest version of the movie, released in November, portrays the Grinch as a friendlier character who is not quite as cold hearted. Make no mistake, The Grinch is still cranky and pessimistic, but he is a much easier character for viewers to empathize with, even before the end of the movie when the Grinch decides to right his wrongs and return Christmas to the Who’s.
The Grinch is also much kinder to his loyal sidekick Max, and the movie even briefly introduces a new character: a reindeer named Jeff.
Moreover, the movie goes into greater detail on the psyche of the Grinch, explaining that his hatred of Christmas stems from the fact that he felt neglected when his parents did not celebrate the holiday. This could be contrasted to the 2000 adaptation where his dislike of Christmas and the Who’s is attributed to living among them as a child and feeling like an outcast.
The 2018 version is most notably different in the fact that it gives more screen time to the Who’s and the plot of the movie in part revolves around Cindy Lou Who, a supporting character in the original.
While all three movies include elements that make each adaptation uniquely different, the 2018 version does the best at balancing pop culture with the plot from the book. I give The Grinch three out of five stars.