Tom and Jerry: A Nutcracker Tale (2007)

tom-and-jerry-a-nutcracker-tale-1 If you go into “A Nutcracker Tale” expecting full blown Tom and Jerry mayhem involving burning hands, cut tails, and knives to the butt, then you’re going to be disappointed. We’re now at a time of sheer confusion where a cat cutting a mouse’s tail is crossing the line yet we’ll willingly allow our children to watch MTV. Censors and the FCC can never seem to make up their damn minds, anymore.

“A Nutcracker Tale” is more watered down Tom and Jerry antics where everything is pretty much copasetic and the two don’t spend the entire movie chasing each other around. Spike is nowhere to be found either. Instead, Jerry dreams of dancing to his favorite musical and is able to do so after being transferred to a far away land. But the King of Cats crashes the party with his friends and they kidnap the toy ballerina. Now Jerry has to stop them. One reason why I was able to detach myself from the concept was because this is not the characters I grew up with.

Tom talks, his nephew plays an unnecessarily important role, and there’s the heavy use of the scores from the Nutcracker, and I tried to enjoy it based solely on what was there, and not what I was expecting. For its credit, “A Nutcracker Tale” has a cute temperament about itself, and I enjoyed the love story between Jerry and his toy ballerina, in the end. One thing that I found so utterly insulting in spite of it all was the rather thinly drawn and subtle religious undertones that not only kept an eye roll on me the entire time, but also made me nod in sheer disappointment at Warner’s attempts to insert some form of religious themes within the comedy.

The toys are symbolism for us, the toymaker is a symbol of god, and of course there are lines like “Of course there’s a toymaker! We were all made by somebody!” As well as moments of pure faith induced nonsense where a character is stuck under the ice, and is given strength by a mysterious white light to break free. What hogwash. If I needed my children to be brainwashed, I’d send them to watch “Veggie tales,” I’m sad that Warner are using these characters to insert such cheesy moments and subtext. For thinly veiled religious propaganda posing as classic animation, “Tom and Jerry: A Nutcracker Tale” isn’t as bad as the other watered down DTV properties. Will it win awards? Hell no. But hey, face it, Warner geared this to children, and “Tom and Jerry: A Nutcracker Tale” is for the children.