Months ago, when I saw advertising for "The Peanuts Movie" I cringed. I really didn't think the Schulz family would ever allow anyone to dare take this gem of a comic further but just let it rest in the treasure chest it should forever stay in. As a child of the '70s, Charlie Brown TV Specials were just that! "Special" with a capital "S"! Children went through a day of school all excited to come home, eat dinner, and see the 8'O'clock holiday special! Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas TV specials were the Peanut's Trifecta of greatness!
So here we are, in 2015. Five years after Charles M. Schulz has passed away and this year marks the 50th Anniversary of the all time classic "Merry Christmas Charlie Brown". Not seeing "The Peanuts Movie" would have left me unsettled but seeing it was a risk in getting me in a bummed out mood if the movie did go south.
I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. Seeing Charles Schulz's sons as producers gave me a little hope. What was great is that they didn't force the Peanuts into today's world by giving them cell phones or computers (which I was so happy about). They did however, keep classic scenes while bringing out the issues that any school-aged child can relate to, such as a new neighbor moving into the area, peer pressure, procrastinating on book reports or getting something done after working so hard, only to have something else ruin the plans. Adults spoke with "Waa Waas" and were never seen. Lucy was a brat, Sally had her Linus crushes, Snoopy was great comic relief with short yet subtle slapstick and comic punchlines. Charlie Brown made you "love" him and root for his success.
I went into this movie with my defenses in place, only to come out sighing and missing the childhood only the Peanuts could frame so well. Well done I say. Charles M. Schulz would be very proud. The integrity of this comic was well kept and yes, a new generation can easily love The Peanuts as though it were new ( minus the phones with cords, and typewriters) ha ha!