The Grinch

Front Row at the Movies by Shirrel Rhoades

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Everybody has read Dr. Seuss.

Who doesn’t know “If I Ran the Zoo,” “Horton Hears a Who,” “The Cat in the Hat,” “Green Eggs and Ham,” and, of course, “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas”?

The late Theodor Seuss Geisel wrote and illustrated more than 60 books. Several have been made into movies or television specials.

Given the time of year, we can’t help but think about “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas,” a holiday story that nears mythic proportions. A character that competes with Rudolph and Frosty and Ebenezer Scrooge.

As all children (and grown-up children) know, the Grinch is a grumpy, green creature who dislikes the holiday.

In 1966, Chuck Jones brought an animated version of “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” to TV screens. In 2000, Ron Howard did a big-screen live-action version starring a heavily-made-up Jim Carrey.

Now Scott Mosier and Yarrow Chaney give us a 3-D computer-animated comedy that’ll help get us ready for Christmas.

Singer/composer Pharrell Williams (the “Despicable Me” movies) narrates this new outing, with Benedict Cumberbatch (“Dr. Strange,” TV’s “Sherlock Holmes”) perfectly providing the voice of the Grinch.

Other voices include Rashida Jones (The Muppets,” TV’s “Angela Tribeca”), Keenan Thompson (“Fat Albert,” TV’s Saturday Night Live), and 93-year-old Angela Lansbury (“The Manchurian Candidate,” TV’s “Murder, She Wrote”).

This week “The Grinch” is skulking about the Tropic Cinema.

Here again, the Grinch hatches a scheme to ruin Christmas for the residents of Whoville. You know the story. But it’s fun to see it retold using modern animation technology that brings imagination to life.

And it may be new to your kids.

The animation was created entirely in France by Illumination Mac Guff. Danny Elfman composed the music. Rapper Tyler the Creator wrote a special song, “I Am the Grinch,” and collaborated with Elfman on a new rendition of “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.”

Other musical contributors include Run-D M.C., Buster Poindexter and His Banshees of Blue, Nat King Cole, Jackie Wilson, The Supremes, The Brian Setzer Orchestra, and Pentatonix.

Dr. Seuss helps you appreciate Christmas by introducing a grouch who doesn’t. Sort of reverse psychology. Trust me, it works.

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