The Hunt is an art-house classic; Rise of The Guardians falls flat

Cert 15 By Charlie Lyne

FIFTEEN YEARS since his breakthrough film Festen garnered a host of international awards, The Hunt looks set to re-establish Danish director Thomas Vinterberg as an art house force to be reckoned with.

Mads Mikkelson plays Lucas, a nursery school teacher in a small Danish village who is falsely accused of sexually abusing a young girl. His quiet incredulity at the accusation leaves him unable (and seemingly unwilling) to defend himself. With devastating clarity, Vinterberg shows us a man reduced from beloved pillar of the community to vilified outcast in a matter of days. Mikkelsen brings unshowy depth to a character who in lesser hands might have been little more than an uncomplicated saint at the mercy of his surroundings.

Cert PG By Alex Dymoke

FESTIVE ANIMATION Rise of the Guardians features Santa Claus (Alec Baldwin), the Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), the tooth-fairy, a gold creature who makes dreams, a flying boy who can turn things to ice, and a Voldemort-type character who conjures nightmares.

While Dreamworks have obviously made good use of their “things that appeal to children” spider-diagram, the hodgepodge of characters and ideas makes for an unappetisingly bitty virtual world.

Despite some spectacular action sequences and some decent writing, Rise of the Guardians fails to meet the high standards set by the major animation studios.