For those of us in our 30s and 40s, seeing the trailer and advertisement of the new Tom&Jerry movie really brings back a sense of nostalgia. We grew up with the original Tom&Jerry cartoon series, and although I always rooted for Jerry, I also sometimes sympathised with the poor cat, especially since he was most often on the losing side, and ended up getting beaten to a pulp. So, when I saw the poster ad at the bus stop near my house, and knew that the release date was right during the Lunar New Year holiday period, I immediately went ahead and booked tickets for the whole family to spend some time during our super long weekend. And there we came, armed with the jackets (for the cinema was like a chiller), a big tub of popcorns and a tall mug of ice lemon tea (I know, it’s hugely overpriced, but it’s part of the fun of going to the cinema, and we don’t really do that often nowadays, so a bit of contribution to the country’s GDP is not much harm anyway), and we had a nice 2-hour experience on the first day of the Year of the Ox.
The main theme of the movie is still the same as the cartoon. Tom tries to catch Jerry, and Jerry always finds a way to trick Tom and make him suffer, and in the end they put aside their enmity and join force to clear the mess they created. The fun part is in the details. It’s very entertaining to see the schemes and plans that Tom hatched to catch Jerry, and the way Jerry foiled those plans. Furthermore, bringing the story to New York gives a bigger backdrop with more room for the story to unfold. And the way the producer overlay the 2D cartoons on top of the live action movie instead of rendering Tom and Jerry in 3D really paid homage to the original version, and helped us relate back to the old story, on the same vein of the movie Enchanted some time ago.
2021 seems to be the year of Chloe Grace Moretz. Besides starring in Tom&Jerry, she also stars in Shadow in the Cloud, an action movie that will be released to cinemas soon as well. Overall, her performance was quite average, but there were still rare moments where she sparkled some star quality, such as the scene where she took the identity of the interview candidate, and put up a great performance in front of the hotel boss to nail the event manager role. But again, acting is never her forte, as shown in her past movies, so it’s kind of expected for me. Moreover, the reason I go to the cinema is to meet my old friends again, not to watch her side story, so as long as she can contribute something to carry the story forward, it’s good enough for me. And I love the background theme of the prestigious wedding that set everything in motion. It’s so hilarious, and gives some logic to the whole story and events. After a quiet year at the movies because of Covid, this year is witnessing some cinemas opening their doors again, especially in countries that control the virus relatively well. Hopefully with the roll out of the vaccine, the situation will be improved even faster, and life can get back to more normal again.
There was nothing amazing or original about this movie, but it’s really entertaining and is made purely for fun and relaxation. It is the first introduction for 21st century kids to the classical duo of cat and mouse, and a lovely trip down memory lane for all the millennials. It will not win any award, but it will definitely do well at the box office, given that there are not many movies released during this time of the year. As for me, I am really happy that I got a date with the clueless cat and the witty but also naughty mouse again. Tom&Jerry is a happy part of my childhood, and an inspiration that helped me and other kids of my age overcome our hardship, and shortfall in life and work harder to achieve the better things in life, and for that, I am so grateful.