By John Delia Jr.
The fabled story of the Nutcracker has many experiences, from plays, to musicals, to theater, and to operas; it has entertained us all for a century. What if these stories are real, and these Christmas toys really do have a world of their own? That would be a tale we all would love to hear. Enter Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. After the death of their mother, Clara (Mackenzie Foy), Fritz (Tom Sweet), Louise (Ellie Bamber), and their father, Mr. Stahbaum (Matthew Macfadyen), must endure the Christmas holidays without her. Struggling to move on with the events of the season, Mr. Stahbaum pushes them all to attend the annual event at Drosselmeyer’s house.
Drosselmeyer (Morgan Freeman) is a wealthy inventor of toys and many useful things. He loves all children and teaches them how to use their potential in whatever they are inspired to be.
Like all children who go to Drosselmeyer’s house, they receive a gift for Christmas, but at this event each gift must be searched for. When Clara follows the ribbon that is attached to her present, she finds a way into a new world. There she meets a toy soldier and the master of the guard, Phillip (Jayden Fowora-Knight). When he discovers who Clara is, he vows to help here discover what she is really looking for.
Once she is in the four realms, she meets the four leaders, Mother Ginger (Helen Mirren), Hawthorne (Eugenio Derbez), Shiver (Richard E. Grant), and Sugar Plum (Keira Knightley). From here Clara must find a way to get back to her world and help save the four realms from total destruction.
Directors Lasse Hallstrom and Joe Johnston created an imaginary realm that brought these Christmas characters to life, creating a storyline that will grab the audience’s attention and bringing them into this world of fantasy. Both Hallstrom and Johnson did an excellent job creating this domain with spectacular special effects. The scenic backgrounds, the attention to detail, and remarkable artwork makes this place blend together.
I based my grade on the outstanding storyline that brings this historic tale to life and the special effects that make it all seem real.