Road Rash Reviews

Moomins and the Winter Wonderland Review****-

Cert U | 82 mins | 2019

4 stars of enchanting Christmas family fun.

Moomins and the Winter Wonderland is a feature length children’s film based on the beloved characters created by Finnish author and illustrator Tove Jansson in the 1940’s.

This enchanting film has been lovingly put together using existing stop-motion Moomin productions from the 1980’s with a new screenplay, edited and restored to 4K format, whilst retaining the magic of the original series.

“Winter is coming. Everything freezes slowly. It’s time to say goodbye and prepare for the coldness.”

It is autumn in Moominvalley, winter is fast approaching and Moomintroll (Bill Skarsgård – It, Castle Rock) reluctantly prepares to say goodbye to his best friend Snufkin (Terrence Scammell – Heavy Metal 2000, Leap!) who likes to travel the world during the winter.

The Moomin family hibernate through the cold winter months, as is the tradition handed down from their ancestors.

There is much work to be done and Moominmamma (Kathleen Fee – The Words, The Moth Diaries) is busy in the kitchen making preserves and pickled mushrooms, with the assistance of Moomintroll and the wise and practical Moominpappa (Stellan Skarsgård – Amistad, Good Will Hunting.) With their help, they are soon ready for the great sleep.

Moomintroll wonders about the strange world of winter however and this year he will get to find out. His friend, the mischievous Little My (Alicia Vikander – The Light Between Oceans, The Danish Girl) has been awakened by a squirrel and wants to play. She decides to wake Moomintroll to play with her and on the way she meets Healthy Hemulin (Pierre Lenoir – The Dead Zone) a Moomin from outside the valley who doesn’t hibernate.

The two of them decide to wake the Moomins so that they can prepare for the arrival of Christmas. They are baffled as to who this is and at the requirements to prepare for their visit. They must find gifts, dress a tree and put together a great feast. It’s time for Moomintroll and his family to discover the magic of Christmas and the strange and wonderful land that is the forest in the snow.

Moomins and the Winter Wonderland is a thoroughly enchanting film, with it’s gorgeous retro stop-motion animation which lends it a magical feel that is impossible to capture with modern CGI. This will appeal to anyone who watched the Moomins as a child, as well as being brought to a whole new generation, who can fall in love with these adorable felt hippo-like creatures.

The world is populated with many strange but relatable characters, including the enigmatic Too-ticky (Sara Bradeen – Afterwards), Sorry-oo the dog (Alicia Vikander) and of course the Whompers. Children and adults alike will enjoy spending time with them all in the Moominvalley this Christmas, well worth a watch for the whole family.

“How can anyone hate winter so much that they’d want to sleep through it?”

Moomins and the Winter Wonderland is available to buy now on Digital HD.

DirectorIra Carpelan, Jakub Wronski
GenreFamily, fantasy, animation
StarringBill Skarsgård, Stellan Skarsgård, Kathleen Fee, Alicia Vikander
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