Spirited (2022)

Spirited (2022)

Movie Details

Movie: Spirited (2022)
Director: Sean Anders
Cast: Will Ferrell, Ryan Reynolds, Octavia Spencer
Movie type: Musical/Comedy
Release date: 11 November 2022
IMDB Rating: 6.6/10
Language: English
Duration: 2h 7m


Spirited (2022)


It’s November, and in the film world that means, among other things, an avalanche of Christmas family films and romances of all kinds. For a few years now, it has been the case that we don’t only see holiday pieces in cinemas or on TV, but also on the stream, where Netflix, in particular, pours sugary treats in large quantities. However, the biggest Christmas notch this time went to rival Apple, which decided to combine the Christmas theme with a musical and also cast two big stars here, the comedic Will Ferrell and the ever-more eye-catching Ryan Reynolds. But this combination could end up both a genre hit and a sweetened and disintegrating diarrhea, on which Reynolds‘ critics will not leave a thread dry. I was quite afraid that Spirited would belong to the latter category. In the end, however, I had more fun than I expected.

To ensure that the audience’s bets are not few, Spirited is a modern variation on the already well-worn Christmas carol by Charles Dickens. This brings us to the headquarters of souls, in which a special team led by the spirits of past, future and especially current Christmases tries to correct one corrupt sinner and thus improve the number of good deeds and good people on Earth. The Ghost of Christmas with the face of Will Ferrell could then retire for his amazing results (that is, get a second try among the living), but instead, he decides to raise the bar and do the impossible – to fix the unfixable. This is supposed to be the chatty and pissed-off Clint Briggs, whose company specializes in trendy sins – for marketing reasons, it creates fake news, internet cases, or arguments and pulls all kinds of dirt on opponents.

From the very first minutes, it’s a bet on the audience’s certainty with everything. Director Sean Anders shows that he already has a knack for comedies and serves up a professionally honest spectacle, which, especially in the first half, does not lack drive, the right Christmas atmosphere, several nice ideas, and also a large portion of perspective and overall lightness, when the creators are not afraid of themselves and the musical to make fun of the genre, and the characters themselves often kindly dismiss the whole concept. Also thanks to this refreshing approach, it is an unexpectedly pleasant mix of musical and holiday comedy for the audience, which you can forgive even a few screenwriting mistakes. The book Christmas Carol is worked quite sympathetically here and is even skilfully followed up on it. Fortunately, don’t expect another routine retelling of a classic story without a shred of idea.

Prim, however, is still played by the main acting duo, and unfortunately, it worked out to be 50:50. The Hollywood stars have a solid chemistry between them, they know how to pass on a few nice words, and especially Will Ferrell is here this time as a big nice guy and a pushover, who is moderate most of the time and not as loud as I’m used to him. Unfortunately, there is a bigger problem with Reynolds. Unsurprisingly, the main audience magnet goes by his chatty standard, and even though I’m not as allergic to this position as some of you, I was already on edge here. Reynolds seems to have forgotten that at least in the first half he should have played a bit of a pissed-off pig. But he didn’t bother with that much, he simply played the same as always, so there can be no question of an unconventional performance or a functional transformation of his character. Also, besides Ferrell, there are also a few sympathetic supporting characters,

The musical passage also has its flaws, several songs are interchangeable, but the more expressive songs, in the form of a catchy melody, dance choreography, or imaginative text (Good Afternoon!) manage to make up for it nicely and the central duo can sing honestly. It is therefore a shame that the brisk pace and the drive for the goal cannot be maintained throughout due to the unnecessarily long footage, and in the last third the director runs out of breath. At the same time, once again it was enough to cut a little more. And it also froze that the line around fake news and Internet cases is practically not mined at all.

Spirited fulfills its pre-Christmas task more than passably. Yes, we have a slightly sugary atmosphere, a touch of tasteless, and an annoying lesson at the end. However, that already belongs to this genre somehow. The important thing is that Sean Anders managed to combine it into a catchy and properly relaxed whole with honest musical craftsmanship. Reynolds could have cut back on his hectic exposition, but otherwise, this is a gratefully mixed audience cocktail. The Christmas classic will never grow out of this piece, but as a pleasant Christmas canapé it will not offend Spirited

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