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Happy New Year, Charlie Brown

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Note: It has been established that this film has been disliked by fans and it may not be one of the worst movies of all time, but it is not the best either.

This film is not as happy as it should be......

Happy New Year, Charlie Brown is a 1986 animated Happy New Years children's film, it is the prequel to I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown, is chronologically the fourth film story-wise, and is the 28th film in the Charlie Brown series.

Plot

Charlie Brown is obliged to attend Peppermint Patty's New Year's Eve party and to get to dance with the Little Red Haired Girl, even though he has to finish the novel War and Peace.

Why This Film Is Not A Happy New Year

  1. The biggest issue with this film is that it lacks any creative and fun charm that the previous films have, and is instead mostly loaded with boring and moronic filler while ultimately leading to an incredibly predictable and downright insultingly sadistic ending.
  2. Having a film like this that's lazily written is one thing, but this film also marks one of the only moments in the series where Charlie Brown's butt-monkey status is way too exaggerated, if not at its absolute worst, particularly in this film, mainly due to him receiving more unnecessary amounts of mistreatment and torture than usual, just for cheap laughs, especially in the ending.
    1. As a matter of fact, when compared to previous films, this film tries too hard to make Charlie Brown look like the bad guy and have him suffer, and it literary goes to the point that he goes through a lot of crap even though Charlie Brown did absolutely nothing wrong to warrant it/deserve it. He even suffers through a lot of guilt tripping from Lucy, Peppermint Patty and even Sally near the end of the film, and this treatment on him is unwarranted and intolerable.
      1. While it is generally common that Charlie Brown gets mistreated/tortured, whenever there is a film where Charlie Brown gets mistreated/tortured (e.g "Its The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown", "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving" and of course more importantly "A Charlie Brown Christmas"), he at least wins in the end. Here, poor Charlie Brown loses like he has not even suffered enough.
  3. Somewhat misleading title for two reasons:
    1. Despite the theme of the film being set during New Year's, while New Year's is the main theme of this film, that doesn't become relevant until near the end of the film, with most of the film mainly focusing on Charlie Brown getting mistreated due to his assignment.
    2. In both versions of the VHS covers, it shows Charlie Brown happy and having fun, when in the film, he is overwhelmed/depressed and is trying to do his homework though out the whole film.
  4. Very poor first impression where it starts off at school. At first, Charlie Brown is happy that there's one minute of school and that there is no homework, only for the teacher to assign a homework assignment to read a novel titled "War and Peace". This part is particular is also infuriating as there was only one minute of school left, so to have the teacher to out-of-nowhere give out an assignment is an incredible cheap move to pull off.
    1. On that note, the assignment to work on is also a very buzzard choice, as novel is "War and Peace", which is way too much for kids, as this assignment feels more like something for high schoolers, not kindergartners.
  5. This is also one of the only films in the series where Charlie Brown's friends (aside from Marcy) serve nothing other than being filler and are cardboard cutouts, as they don't do anything to help Charlie Brown other than to annoy/mistreat him in their ways (with Linus being the worst example), they don't even attempt to find Charlie Brown when the New Years celebration's about to begging.
    1. On that note, this is also one of the only moments in which Snoppy and Woodstock are also somewhat unlikable, as they make fun of Charlie Brown before the New Years, this is especially out-of-character for Snoppy act like this to Charlie Brown as he's suppose to be Charlie Brown's pet.
  6. While the musicale numbers are decent, the song "Slow, Slow, Quick, Quick" is a VERY out-of-place song and doesn't fit with the educates of Charlie Brown.
  7. There are multiple plot-holes and continually errors in the film:
    1. The film never explains why the teacher has decided to give out homework before the Holiday Break, and on the last minute of school.
    2. It has been established that Linus and a few others go to the same school with Charlie Brown, yet Charlie Brown is the only one though out the whole film to be doing the assignment, while the others aren't.
    3. Throughout the whole film, Charlie Brown's trying to do his homework, but for some weird and bizarre reason, Charlie Brown never seems to ask anyone's help him with his assignment, he doesn't even ask his parents to help him.
    4. Near the end of the climax during the New Years Eve party, Peppermint Patty asks where Charlie Brown is, even tho she just saw him outside a few minutes ago.
    5. Right after the New-Years Celebration, the next day shows Charlie Brown and the others back at school, this is also buzzard as at that point, kids are gonna be VERY tired after staying up till midnight, they should have given the kids at least one or two more days-off before school.
  8. The extremely infamous scene were during the New Year Eve Party scene near the end of the climax after Charlie Brown accidentally goes to sleep during his assignment, the Little Red Haired Girl comes in as Linus invents her, tho rather then looking Charlie Brown and telling him that she's here (like you know, a real friend would do), Linus instead chooses to dance with the Little Red Haired Girl, thus taking Charlie Brown's girlfriend, this is very out-of-character for Linus, especially since he's Charlie Brown's best friend.
    1. The scene treats it like it would be a very happy and funny moment, when in truth its not as Linus had no reason to not tell Charlie Brown that the Little Red Haired Girl is hear and chooses to dance with her.
    2. In fact, this is made even worst as Linus is dancing with the Little Red Haired Girl, who keep in mind, Charlie Brown has a crush on and is Charlie Brown's love interest, so there for....Linus is potentially stealing Charlie Brown's Girlfriend.
  9. The scene right after the Happy New Year's celebration is infuriating, sad and extremely painful to watch, after Charlie Brown wakes up and finds out that he missed the New Years celebration, not only does Peppermint Patty yell at Charlie Brown for "missing" the dance, but Sally also yells at Charlie Brown for Linus dancing with the Little Red Haired Girl, even though it was clearly Linus' fault.
    1. On the subject of that scene, this part is also infuriating as Linus was standing behind Sally the whole time the latter was yelling at Charlie Brown, so it makes you wonder why Sally never seems to notice Linus and yells at him instead.
  10. All of the other depressing and mistreating moments with Charlie Brown in this film are unfunny, annoying, dumb and lazy, such as:
    • Charlie Brown asking a store owner if he/she has a movie/game of War and Peace, only for the latter to say no to these moments.
    • Charlie Brown having fun with Peppermint Patty at a dance sequence, only for him to fall on his back after tripping on the "War and Peace" book.
    • Charlie Brown losing the Musical Chairs and being embarrassed after finding out that he was sitting on Peppermint Patty's lap after attempting to sit on a chair.
    • Charlie Brown getting yelled at by Lucy after Snoppy sniffs her root beer, even tho it was Snoppy's fault.
    • Charlie Brown accidentally goes to sleep during is assignment right before Happy New Years Celebration, thus missing the celebrations with his friends.
  11. When Linus starts stating that he dance with the Little Red Hair Girl, Charlie Brown never berates or even yells at Linus for his actions.
  12. In addition to the film's mean-spirited nature, it is also predictable, as it is easy to tell that Charlie Brown is going to get mistreated in many ways due to his nature. Even the mistreat moments are predictable, notably when Linus opens the door to revile that its the Little Red Haired Girl and you can easily tell that he's going to dance with her rather then tell Charlie Brown, and it falls flat as a result.
    1. This film's plot is also really repetitive, as after Charlie Brown is assign with the Book Report, it just consists of poor Charlie Brown being depress and trying to do his homework while occasionally trying to have fun with his friends, all the while Charlie Brown's friends encourage him to have fun. This goes on and on until after the New Years Eve Party.
  13. Terrible and depressing ending: Charlie Brown gets a D- on his assignment despite all of his work, and its reviled by Linus that the teacher is now given out another assignment, to which after Charlie Brown faints in misery, Linus says "Happy New Year Charlie Brown!" to Charlie Brown, which is nothing more then the film delivering one big middle finger to Charlie Brown after everything he has been though.
    1. This film also has another plot-hole: What kind of teacher gives out another assignment after just given out an assignment?
  14. Neither the teacher, Lucy, Peppermint Patty, Sally or Linus of that matter get punish for their actions on poor Charlie Brown, resulting them into being HUGE Karma Houdinis.
  15. This film includes three bad morals that are taught to children:
    1. Its first moral teaches that you should overwork yourself and that overworking yourself is okay while having fun while spending time with your family and/or friends is wrong. This is shown though out the film as Charlie Brown does nothing but doing his homework though the whole film, rather then have fun with his friends.
    2. The second moral states that it's okay to take your best friend's girlfriend and you will not be yelled at, which is shown when Linus dances with the Little Red Haired Girl.
    3. The third and worst moral shows that you can get away for something you do and you will not be blamed, as shown with Linus.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The animation is pretty good for its time.
  2. Charlie Brown is still a likable protagonist.
  3. Some funny moments here and there, like the scene were Linus' little brother blows square balloons instead of round balloons.
  4. The scene were Marcy kisses Charlie Brown after the latter finds out that Linus dances with the Little Red Hair Girl and now feels depressed is a very sweet moment, and is the only happy moment in this film.

Reception

When compared to previous Charlie Brown films, Happy New Year, Charlie Brown is the first film in the Charlie Brown series to received mixed-to-negative reviews from Charlie Brown fans and critics alike. Although some of them do praised the film for its gags and Marcy kissing Charlie Brown, others criticized it for its bad moral of overworking yourself, the somewhat misleading title, Charlie Brown unfairly being mistreated though the whole film, Linus' out-of-character actions and the depressing and unfair ending. The film is considered to be one of the worst Charlie Brown films of all time.

Comments

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