The Grinch (2018)

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The Grinch
Grinch 2018.jpg
"You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch" - Tyler, The Creator
Genre: Animated
Directed By: Scott Mosier
Yarrow Cheney
Produced By: Chris Meledandri
Janet Healy
Written By: Michael LeSieur
Tommy Swerdlow
Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch
Rashida Jones
Kenan Thompson
Cameron Seely
Angela Lansbury
Photography: Color
Distributed By: Universal Pictures
Release Date: October 22, 2018 (Regency Village Theater)
November 9, 2018 (United States)
Runtime: 86 Minutes
Country: United States

The Grinch (also known as Dr. Seuss' The Grinch) is a 2018 American computer-animated Christmas film produced by Illumination Entertainment and the third screen adaptation of the book How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss, after the television special from 1966 and the live-action film released in 2000. The film premiered at Regency Village Theatre on October 22, 2018 and was released and distributed by Universal Pictures in the United States on November 9, 2018, in RealD 3D, IMAX, IMAX 3D, Dolby Cinema, and 4DX theaters.

It is also the final film adaptation of a Dr. Seuss book during the lifetime of Seuss's widow Audrey Geisel, who died on December 19, 2018, and was an executive producer of the film.


The Grinch and his loyal dog, Max, live a solitary existence inside a cave on Mount Crumpet. His main source of aggravation comes during Christmastime when his neighbors in Whoville celebrate the holidays with a bang. When the Whos decide to make Christmas bigger and brighter, the disgruntled Grinch realizes there is one way to gain peace and quiet. With help from Max, the green grump hatches a scheme to pose as Santa Claus, steal Christmas and silence the Whos' holiday cheer once and for all.

Bad Qualities

  1. The main problem with the film is all of the character writing is all informed instead of being shown: notably, the Grinch is written to be a terrifying grump who outright hates Christmas because of his past experiences with it, but his backstory and personality hardly makes it look like he outright hates Christmas, as the former just shows him having to miss out on Christmas instead of being scarred by it and the latter makes him too normal to be seen as if he's a terrifying grump.
    • The movie, similar to the infamous Grinch film adaptation released in 2000, also has a pointless backstory that is generic and predictable and doesn't even properly elaborate more depth onto why the Grinch legitimately hates Christmas (although this backstory doesn't take up much of the film thankfully).
  2. The Grinch's design, while beautifully animated and faithfully translated from the book and the animated special, feels more soft than menacing. Max's design also looks out of place and feels like a reject from The Secret Life of PetsGMW.
    • The Grinch's design also goes against the iconic song; You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch. For example, when one hears the lyrics; “You have termites in your smile,” describing how disgusting he is, they’ll see that his teeth are perfectly molded and white.
  3. While the voice acting is good overall, it can seem rather off.
    • While Benedict Cumberbatch does a pretty good job as the Grinch, his voice sounds way too normal for the role and he sounds more like someone who is mildly peeved than someone who has no soul and is the physical embodiment of evil. He is not even that cruel, or presented as a real bad guy, just a misunderstood loner who's reclusive but doesn’t want to be alone, coming off as a knock-off of Gru from Despicable Me.
      • He even goes back and forth from liking Christmas to not, despite the narration using exact lines from the book about how much he hates it. This is not only inconsistent with the character, but also inconsistent with the goal of giving the Grinch character while being faithful to the original story.
    • Cameron Seely as Cindy Lou Who sounds more like a little boy's voice instead of a girl's voice.
    • Pharrell Williams as the narrator can be kind of bland and kind of unfitting.
    • Angela Lansbury as the Mayor of Whoville only appears for one scene and that's pretty much it, making her seem like wasted talent.
  4. It once again runs into the same issue most of these adaptations run into the length. The film is an hour and 28 minutes long and the changes instead consist of way too much padding without properly enhancing its narrative, just so they could have an excuse to make a film out of the book.
  5. The new characters who are friends of Cindy Lou don't do much to progress the plot and have no real personality.
  6. The new moose character, Fred, is just a pointless comic relief character who shows up for a few scenes and then shows up at the end to finally do something.
  7. Mediocre comedy including the use of internet memes such as the "Screaming Goat" being used randomly as a joke.
  8. The rap update to the Grinch theme is a poor attempt at being hip and cool.
  9. Cindy Lou is now a generic energetic kid with very little personality, and feels more like a knock-off of Agnes from Despicable Me. In fact, she's one of the few things the original movie did better than this one. There, Cindy Lou is more curious, hopeful and trusting, seeing that there may be some good in the Grinch. Here, there's none of that and she's just reduced to a bland, happy-go-lucky kid.
  10. The scene where the Grinch gets fat when he has emotional eating is uncomfortable and gross.

Good Qualities

  1. Great animation, which is a nice step-up for Illumination films. The art style itself is at least somewhat very accurate to the Dr. Seuss books, although it still has some out of place designs and the lazy reuse of assets that make it rather distracting.
    • In fact, one shot in the film where the Grinch looks down on Whoville looks visually stunning.
    • The concept art for the film is also fantastic at least, even if the film ended up being bland.
  2. Good voice acting, a particular highlight being Kenan Thompson as Bricklebaum.
  3. It isn't nearly as mean-spirited as the previous attempt at a Grinch adaptation, as the film is a lot more lighthearted than the 2000 live-action adaptation, for example, it lacks the scene where the Grinch saves Cindy, but the former regrets doing so and wraps Cindy in gift paper, as well as throwing the dark atmosphere out of the window in favor of a happier tone that fits Dr. Seuss better.
    • Depending on your opinion, the movie actually has the Grinch treating Max nicely in some scenes, which (again, depending on your opinion) is a nice change from the original 1966 special and 2000 film.
  4. Unlike Illumination's previous Dr. Seuss adaption The Lorax, it doesn't have as much pop culture references (if at all) and is more faithful to the book and the special it is based on.
  5. Danny Elfman's score is amazing, as always.
  6. Some scenes can be pretty funny, such as the setups to the Grinch's cruel acts to the civilians of Whoville and one of Cindy-Lou's friends holding a candy cane like a cigarette.
  7. The Grinch's backstory, despite being completely pointless, is depressing for what it is and it doesn't take up most of the film.


The film received mixed to average reviews from critics and fans of the original book and special, with praised the animation, heart, Danny Elfman's score and the vocal performances (particularly Cumberbatch's), but criticized its screenplay, humor, and felt the film added little or nothing new to the source material. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 60% based on 189 reviews and an average rating of 5.97/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "The Grinch gives the classic Seuss source material a brightly animated update that's solidly suitable for younger viewers without adding substantially to the story's legacy.". On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 51 out of 100, based on 32 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A–" on an A+ to F scale, while PostTrak reported filmgoers gave it an 83% positive score and a 75% "definite recommend".

Box office

As with most Illumination films, it was a box office hit, earning $511.6 million worldwide.

External links




19 months ago
Score 3
I liked this movie.


19 months ago
Score 1
I liked this movie.


18 months ago
Score 0
For some reason BOOGIE by BROCKHAMPTON is played in this movie.


15 months ago
Score 1
When the Guac is extra


11 months ago
Score 0
I like this movie IMO


10 months ago
Score 0
I really don't think this film is that bad. I thought it was pretty decent.

Nitesh Surya Vanapalli

8 months ago
Score 0
Scheme big.

Blocky The Nerd

7 months ago
Score 1
I actually hate this film,but in a lion king (2019) way where it’s clearly a gash grab based on something I enjoy and made a terrible film,but unlike lion king (2019) they actually changed stuff,but for the worst,like for example,they made grinch a bland grumpy character,added cringeworthy humor,and added a cliche backstory when we didn’t need one.


5 months ago
Score 0
the live action grinch was better

Mickey Mouse

5 months ago
Score 6

It wasn't IMO, literally that film is scary as shit, while this one can be enjoyed by people without getting scared.

I respect your opinion tho


4 months ago
Score 0
So, in other words... there is only one good Dr. Seuss movie.


4 months ago
Score 0
Scheme big...indeed


4 months ago
Score 1
Cindy Lou Who honestly kind of looks like Olympia from Norm of the North without glasses


3 months ago
Score 1
it's an ok film

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