Making any movie like this presents a difficult challenge. How does one satisfy the nostalgia of the older generation while appealing to a newer audience? Well in all honestly, this film managed to do that well enough. The animation of the movie is clean and new enough that it doesn’t look like crap to the new generation while still having the style and physics of the old Charlie Brown cartoon. It looks great, it feels great and it would be great to see more franchises take this approach when bringing back older series’ to new audiences.
The setting, references and technology remain the same in this film as it was in the cartoons. I was afraid I was going to hear tons of new pop music, see cellphones and characters taking God damn selfies but the movie does away with all that. I figured they’d modernized the crap out of this movie, heck, I even thought they might make the parents speak. But Peanuts doesn’t give in to the times and keeps the movie in the same era it should be in.
In order to keep the movie PG, I found that a lot the comments and saying from the original cartoon didn’t make it into the movie. I mean, cartoons used to be a little more lenient. Some of the low blows the character deal to Charlie Brown are still present and often witty, but not as harsh as they used to be. Even when Snoopy is fighting the Red Baron, you don’t hear the gunshot noises from the imaginary guns; you just see the holes after. A change I could do without but I completely understand. Any super obscure reference and such other things as to not ostracize the young kids and I guess not piss off parents.
Ultimately, Peanuts the Movie is an endearing film that bridges the gap between generations of old and new and offers a newer yet familiar take on a beloved classic. The very essence of what makes Charlie Brown, Charlie Brown is still there and I hope for more to come.