The Star (2017) Poster

(2017)

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10/10
Must see several times.
nancyrea-7915115 November 2017
One of the best animated films I have seen lately. The idea of the Christmas Story seen through the eyes of the animals was totally a new angle on the story and a wonderful inspiration for children and adults.

Although there is obvious evidence of artistic right in the story, (has to be with talking animals) it does follow along with the heart and written encounters of Baby Jesus family journey to His birth in Bethlehem.

I will be going this week for second viewing and checking with friends and family about borrowing some children to take with me. I want every child I know to see this.

As soon as it becomes available on DVD my order will be placed. I have 4 groups of children I will be encouraging to have their parents take them to see this. Movie night at my house will have several showings of this movie.
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10/10
Go See "The Star"! It is a great entertaining movie.
dgranger18 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I'll start this review off by mentioning something specific and unique about this film that proves that I have seen this film while I suspect one reviewer didn't. The film handles the traditional nativity story while modifying the King Herod's attempt to find the Christ child and the Holy Family and murder them. (And, frankly, IMO, that part of the story that leads to the slaughter of the children of Bethlehem is not a suitable subject for family animated movie for children and is wisely left out of this film.) How they changed the King Herod part was to tell the story from the animal's point of view. The donkey Bo, Dave the bird, and Ruth the lamb all notice a new star in the sky and conclude that something great is doing to happen. Now Bo, who is a donkey of a miller, escapes his cruel master, and is adopted by Mary and Joesph. Only after Mary and Joesph leave on their journey to Bethlehem, does Bo learn that Herod has sent a soldier henchman with a long nasty looking sword and two mean chained together dogs to search for Mary and the baby and kill them. Bo enlists the aid of his friend Dave the dove and a lamb named Ruth, to chase after Mary and Joesph in order to warn them of the Soldier hunting them and to protect the holy family. Bo doesn't know why Mary is being hunted. The camels of the Magi, who Bo, Dave, and Ruth don't meet until the end of the film, witness Herod's original plotting. As I said, the film wisely leaves out the massacre of the children of Bethlehem and stops before that point in the biblical narrative means this film does not have a very violent, bloody, and adult scary scene in it for children to watch.

While telling the nativity story from the animals' point of view is not a new idea, using them to modify, and soften Herod's part is.

The animation is stunning in this film.

The story is easy to fallow and treats the traditional nativity story respectfully while infusing the obviously fictional part of the animals talking. It also has jokes in it to keep the tone of the picture light and easy .

The soundtrack's use of the carols and new music is lively, and enjoyable without getting too heavy handed with the religious theme. But the soundtrack doesn't get too light ether. It hits the right balence of seriousness and entertaining.

I would highly recommend taking children to see this film.
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Great Family Christmas Movie!
kathleenmcnab14 November 2017
I took my 7 year old son to see this film and we had a great time. He was laughing out loud at the animals and their antics. There is a scary soldier that was pursuing Mary and Joseph, but not too scary. If you are interested in the traditional Christmas story for your family...this is just the ticket. Great animation. Funny characters. Happy and uplifting. I wish they would make more kids movies like this!!!
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Don't listen to the negatives
QueenPendragon23 November 2017
The oldest review is rather shameful...it's not indoctrination to tell kids the truth and Mary was a virgin, no need for the quotes. The movie's good and worth seeing. It's great that it got a theater release, considering the junk in Hollywood today. Also I don't agree that it trivializes the story at all.
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10/10
Great Movie
kthc-5498618 November 2017
This film is an instant classic. There were many cases of brilliant casting and contributory insertion of unique versions of traditional Christmas songs. This film should be avoided by those that abhor the notion of Christianity. I have been bored by most Hollywood films since 1990. It was very nice to not be completely bored out of my mind eight minutes into the story.
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9/10
Great Family Movie!
jacknlowe20 November 2017
My kids and I completely enjoyed this film! To be honest, I wasn't expecting much, I thought it was just gonna be yet another animated retelling of the first Christmas, but was much better than that! The jokes and gags are actually hilarious and will make kids and grown ups alike burst with laughter. I like that this tells the story of the first Christmas from the perspective of the animals. That makes it different and something I have not seen before. Artistic license is used a lot of course, but I think they stuck to the spirit of the story and kept the most important biblical details in there, while still making it lots of fun!
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10/10
An Instant True Christmas Classic!
tommyvasquez-8057517 November 2017
This is a must see for the whole family. Moving, funny, and adventurous. A great cast with a great soundtrack and all the while portraying the greatest story ever told. The birth of a baby, that forever changed the world. See it with the family, see it with friends, and then see it again.
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9/10
Story of the manger told from the animals perspective- adorable
downthehobbitholeblog20 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This is the must see holiday movie of the year! Take your kids and your kids friends, take your small group, college roommate, or grandmother! And even if you're not so sure about Jesus right now but you love holiday spirit, a cute manger scene, Oprah, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson or Kristin Chenoweth- GO see it!! This is truly a holiday movie for the whole family. A beautifully designed movie with excellent visuals, storytelling and music that reminds us of the redemptive magic that should really be at the heart of Christmas. We have a discussion guide for it on downthehobbitholeblog
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8/10
Grand kids loved it!
Tmorgan11223 November 2017
I saw a preview of this on utube and immediately made sure my grand babies went to see it. I guess I'll use the same word as previous reviewer who thought it was INDOCTRINATION. Yep, I guess I've wanted my kids/gk to be indoctrinated to Christmas being about Jesus. It's hard "fitting it in" with all the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Was proud to be there with ALL 5 of them (ages 4-7) Animation was OK, not like Disney of course, but it kept the kids attention. It has some funny parts. It's all from the perspective of the animals, and it takes a while to get to where the star is leading. I hope the kids got it with the typical noise in a movie for children. But either way, I'm glad they can see a movie that tells the story of Jesus at Christmas time. Better than most of what is offered to them on TV and theatre these days!!
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10/10
Just what you'd expect, and then some!
bree_tws24 November 2017
Went with the family...my 10 and 7 year old loved it! And so did my husband and I. It was just what you want in a movie like this...laugh out loud moments, excitement, and a great reminder about Jesus. It was surprisingly moving for a cartoon, as well. I heard a lady behind me in the theater say that she actually cried! Great fun!
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Saw the film with my parents, who are Catholic, and they both liked it.
Hellmant15 December 2017
'THE STAR': Two and a Half Stars (Out of Five)

A computer-animated Christian family film, about the story of the Nativity of Jesus, told through the eyes of a donkey and other animals. It was directed by Timothy Reckart, and it was written by Carlos Kotkin and Simon Moore (based on an original idea by Tom Sheridan). The film features the voice talents of Steven Yeun, Keegan-Michael Key, Aidy Bryant, Gina Rodriguez, Zachary Levi, Tracy Morgan, Tyler Perry, Oprah Winfrey, Christopher Plummer, Ving Rhames, Gabriel Iglesias, Anthony Anderson, Kelly Clarkson, Patricia Heaton, Kristin Chenoweth, Kris Kristofferson, Mariah Carrey and Delilah. It's received mixed to negative reviews from critics, and it's also a modest hit at the Box Office as well. I found it to be a little too kid friendly, in sometimes a pretty silly way, but religious families will probably enjoy it.

The story revolves around a donkey, named Bo (Yeun), who's tired of his life of slavery, milling wheat for his owner, and dreams of joining a traveling caravan. His father (Kristofferson) helps him escape, and he ends up at the home of Mary (Rodriguez), and Joseph (Levi), who let him stay at their home, despite him not wanting to stay there. Mary, being pregnant with Jesus, and Joseph, later leave their home for Bethlehem. Bo, and his dove friend Dave (Key), try to escape, but they end up on an adventure, with other animals, to protect Mary and Joseph instead. The birth of Jesus, and the first Christmas, becomes the result of their efforts of course.

I saw the film with my parents, who are Catholic, and they both liked it. I can see why other Christians, especially those with kids, would enjoy it too. For me the storytelling, and filmmaking, are a bit too basic and routine though. There's also an excessive amount of silly kids humor in it (but kids should like it at least), and I didn't really care for the animation either. I did like that it's all told from animals' points of view though, and there's even some animal rights/vegan messages in there (that I really appreciated). I think the film accomplishes what it set out to do, and it should please it's target audience at least.
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8/10
Great for my kids
edrago-9571120 November 2017
We took our 5 year old and 3 year old to see it today. It was great! They loved it. It kept their attention the whole time. They got the humorous parts and it told a pretty solid Biblical Christmas Story. It wasn't too cheesy for us adults either. Although our family does celebrate the birth of Jesus at Christmas, I think children of all faiths can enjoy this movie. It's not too preachy nor does it push any "religious agenda."
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10/10
Every Christian should see this movie
ilovdance20104 December 2017
A must see for all Christians. While not completely Biblically correct, the story line is fairly well followed and the animals really help the audience connect to the story and the significance of Jesus' birth. Absolutely loved this movie and will be buying it as soon as it comes out on DVD.
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6/10
The Message and Family Fun Shine Bright, But Better Suited To Direct Release
rgkarim19 November 2017
The spirit of Christmas a common theme of movie around this time of year trying to teach us the main reason we get a vacation and give gifts in December. And about every five years, we get the retelling of the first Christmas that brought with it hope, grace, and salvation from how horrible of people we are. This weekend that retelling comes through again, but this time from the perspective of the animals and what they went through that fateful night. Robbie K here with a review on the Star, an animated movie that hopes to shine bright in this weekend of big releases. What's in store? Read on to find out my friends!

LIKES:

Good animation: With the age of computers, you expect fluid animation, and the Star doesn't disappoint. The animal movements are excellent examples of anatomical study, capturing the foot, neck, muzzle, or whatever other body part you want your animal to move in an accurate manner. In addition, the designers do a nice job of anthropomorphizing the animals as well, creating a hybrid of personalities that are fun to watch. And while your either admiring, or ignoring the animation, you can be sure that your little one will be stoked to see the characters clumsy antics and slapstick humor result in a laughable adventure.

The Voice Acting: While acting in full form is a highly challenging task to try to accomplish, there is something to be said about the art of voice acting. The assembled cast gets two thumbs up for me in their ability to bring the simplistic animal roles to life with semi-memorable characters. There are too many characters to name, but Steven Yeun as the main character carried a heavy load as the adventurous, yet stubborn donkey Bo who was a fun character to watch. Keegan-Michael Key was another welcome addition to the cast, his solid comedic delivery perfect for the comical character of Dave the Dove whose quips have been diluted down for the kid friendly atmosphere of this movie. However, my favorite character was the camel Felix, Tracy Morgan who had the most zany, crazy, and comedic punch of the whole movie with his sarcasm and sheer idiocy. All in all, they do their parts well, and create that wholesome family feeling.

Artistic Tale of Christmas: When it comes to religious and kid's movie, it can be difficult to find the balance that lays between cheesy, annoying, and of overzealous religious zeal. Fortunately, the Star was able to accomplish this goal to the point that it delivers the manner in a heartfelt way without falling into Hallmark sappiness territory. The Star maintains its cute, slapstick tones throughout the whole movie up to the predictable ending that we all know is coming. And when that climax occurs, it somehow delivers the powerful message and keeps things fun, which isn't easy given the imbalance that plagues the cinematic world. Nevertheless, this movie has an art to its delivery, which nets points in my book.

DISLIKES:

Character Use: The Star is another example of jumping the gun and hiring too many actors for a limited cast. While there are a few characters, Bo, Dave, and the wolves, who get an adequate amount of screen time on camera, many of the characters are reduced to unnecessary cameos that serve little purpose. The Field Mouse, the random goat, even the bad king himself are just expensive shout outs that could have been used towards developing a stronger story. Hollywood may be doing favors for the friends, but this reviewer found much of the characters a waste of time.

The story: Before you shout blasphemy towards me, I don't hate the first Christmas story, far from it. What I mean in this dislike is how bare the story felt in this telling. It's one geared towards kids, doing little to curtail the story to adults, which limits its entertainment purposes for a variety of people. Yes, I get it, it's a kid's movie, but think of how well Pixar can cater to both audiences and get the job done. The Star's message is great, the package is cute, but it's limited in the audience members it can truly entertain.

The animation. Other major studios know that every detail is important in animation. While Bo and the main characters movements look great, the rest of the characters (primarily the secondary background characters) walk stiff or are limited in their movements. While a minor dislike to some, this reviewer has developed an eye for world building, and the Star kind of failed on that level for me. Biblical times may not have been the mega city behemoths of the modern world, but I'm pretty sure it had more splendor than this movie made it out to be. The Star seemed to cut costs on this movie where it could, unfortunately making the world succumb to characters caught in mundane worlds.

The VERDICT:

The Star is cute, it's spiritual, and it is one of the most family friendly movies of the entire year to bring your little ones too. With good primary animation, voice acting that is energetic and fun presentation, this is a Christmas story I can get on board with. However, this studio dropped the ball on using their characters and world building, cutting corners to give a simplistic presentation that is dull compared to Disney's worlds. In addition, the limited audience entertainment faction is also a strike against a tale that held much potential. The Star is good for a church group to go to, but it's place would have been better in a direct release film in my opinion, instead of a costly theater run.

My scores are: Animation/Adventure/Comedy: 6.5 Movie Overall: 5.5-6.0
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10/10
Hope Sony will come out with more like it!
erinbug-1434028 December 2017
I loved this movie! I am a teenager and I went to see it with my mother and nine year old sister. She laughed the whole movie, and so did I. I especially like the stupid camel but Bo was also cute. Mary and Joseph were well animated and the voice actors were great! Took me a long time to realize the voice of Joseph was also Flynn Ryder. This movie is great for all ages, and has good and wholesome humor that is unlike other kids movies. By that, I mean it is actually funny and not totally corny. I really hope that Sony will come out with more Bible stories. Sony, you aced this! I think it had a creative and entertaining twist with a good plot, but it still did the story of Jesus's birth a good amount of justice. Perfect to educate kids about Christmas. I never see movies like this anymore.. Almost reminds me of the Biblical Dreamworks movies. I wish more movies like this were coming out, and I think Sony has a talent for this type of movie! I think honestly there is a hidden demand for these types of movies, but it's overshadowed by a lot of the negative and dark movies released today. I love seeing positive movies like this that warm my heart and even give me chills at some parts versus crude humor tucked away in other children's movies, almost like a bone thrown at the adults watching to keep them from falling asleep.
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7/10
Good for the Kiddies
cschultz-221 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Set in "nine months B.C.," "The Star" is a gentle and affectionately- irreverent computer-animated retelling of The Nativity, as seen through the eyes of a clumsy and accident-prone donkey and his friends as they accompany Mary and Joseph on their journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem.

With animation by Cinesite in collaboration with The Jim Henson Company— Cinesite provided the special effects for several of the recent hits from Marvel Entertainment, and the Hensons are the people behind The Muppets—"The Star" mostly abounds with mild slapstick, as animal characters support each through mildly perilous situations on their way to the very first Christmas pageant.

Along with his friends, the donkey—named "Boaz" by Mary, or Bo for short —seeks to protect the Holy Family from King Herod's Roman Centurion hit- man and his two ferocious hounds, occasionally encountering along the way the camels transporting the Three Wise Men along a parallel path to the same event.

Bo is also trying to elude his disgruntled owner, from whom he recently escaped chasing dreams of glory. Mary and Joseph are unaware of the dangers of their journey, due partly to Bo's inability to communicate beyond the elaborate comic pantomime which sometimes earns him a belly- rub from Mary.

Possibly "The Star" with its gentle humor, colorful characters, and superb animation works best as a means of introducing small children to the story of the first Christmas. And the picture receives considerable help from its all-star assembly of voice talent, including Steven Yeun as Boaz, supported by Keegan-Michael Key, Kelly Clarkson, Aidy Bryant from television's SNL, Patricia Heaton, Kristin Chenoweth, Kris Kristofferson, and Ving Rhames.

The unlikely team of Tyler Perry, Oprah Winfrey, and the wonderful Tracy Morgan are heard as the bickering camels transporting the Three Wise Men, Christopher Plummer voices Herod, and Zachary Levi and Gina Rodriguez are the frequently-harried Joseph and his practical but playfully affectionate young wife, Mary.

The picture itself has received mixed reviews—Rotten Tomatoes reports a 62% approval rating from 26 critics, with an average score of 5.2 out of 10—but audiences polled by CinemaScore give "The Star" an average grade of A.

That's the only score that really matters. "The Star" is appropriate for viewing by all audiences, but is especially recommended for the very young.
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10/10
Great show, and entertaining
flamehelp2 December 2017
Everyone always seems to be high judges these days. I for one, enjoyed seeing this movie! I've noticed a lot of Movies that had great animation and a great deal of work put Into them, get criticized. All Just because a movie, didn't have 4K HD Graphics. And for it having a few Noticeable flaws. But isn't this usually to be expected? In my opinion this movie yes, isn't the best. but it's still a great movie that will entertain!! And I myself enjoyed it! #Dontkneel #Bethankful! "Animation is long and tough, so don't always Expect all smooth edges"
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9/10
nice family movie
sparentslp24 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Uplifting tale about Mary, Joseph and the Baby Jesus told from a miniature donkey's perspective. I am a very strong Christian and I didn't mind the slightly watered down story to make it kid friendly. My kids loved the movie and so did my husband and I. I even got a little teary-eyed at the end! Message of love, hard work,and forgiveness. The soundtrack was beautiful. This movie will leave a lasting impression on me.
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special
Kirpianuscus23 March 2018
It is real special. for the inspired speech about Christian faith in the era of globalisation. for animation itself. for the perspective, not new but in wise manner used, of the Birth of Jesus in the eyes of animals. for songs. and for humor. it represents one of source of hope in the time of political corecteness. because it reminds small, essential values. because it gives a touching - precise message about the fundamental importance of faith. and, sure, for the admirable courage to be a confession because, in the age of relativisation, "The Star" becomes a honest remind of the basic Christian Truth.
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10/10
The best animation movie I have ever seen.
bennyemailbox30 November 2017
This is the best animation movie I have ever seen, especially for the Christmas movie themes. So much fun so I consider watch this with your whole family, especially for the kids. Telling the true Christmas from the view of animals, no movie like this before. Sure this is one of the best movie for kids, considering so many junk movie created by Hollywood out there.

Totally awesome...!
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4/10
Garbage, for kids and adults
andreacam8 December 2017
The story of Jesus birth from the point o view of the animals, mainly the donkey. It's absolutely boring for adult and kids. Not funny, not interesting. There many better movie to watch. I's really difficult to understand why they made such a bad movie.If you have kids they will get bored after 10 minutes.
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7/10
Witnesses of Masai's birth, From the view of a donkey and a brunch animal.
ElliesWonder19 November 2017
People are voting too low and criticize too much. This is just an animation, targets children and families the most. Storyline is clear, characters are funny, CGI artworks are beautiful, and I like all their songs. The songs are classic and beautiful. The movie taking the side of the animal, nothing too much about Jesus, it is not a religious topic movie.

I went to watch the movie alone because the trailer was interesting and I have nothing to do on Saturday. The movie was even better than my anticipated, especially when it compared to the low rating I browsed on IMDb. I eventuate enjoyed the movie.
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10/10
Sony do bible
edgy-827-48696519 November 2017
Praying donkey? This just wow. Like an angel who talk with bunch of sheep's (they show shepherds, but... he talk to the sheep's anyway). Or two atheistic camels. I mean, with all this - its anyway not bad film for normal kids. But send this Christian message? No. Its more like insult for christians (with jokes about kiss my feathers), than do something for propaganda their ideas. When Bo say "donkey kick" its obviously was "donkey punch", because all we know how Sony animated films filled with memes. Good one but not in a kid movie AGAIN. And its really "sweet" when in 6+ talk so many about killing babes and others. I think in this rating don't really necessary use words like "dead", "death" and "kill". And its really strange when you start film for kids from such disturbing scene like impregnation of Maria. But, anyway like kids movie for Christmas its good, have funny moments, looks like promising successor for "Open Season" with better graphics. Cant wait 6 or 7 DTV releases - keep donkey and friend, but put Bible away. Maybe they can go through other fairy tales.
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1/10
Not appropriate for young children! **spoiler alert **
riverinhouston23 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I took my child to see "the Star" yesterday thinking it would be a nice holiday movie. I mean, a story promoted as the first Christmas and birth of Jesus should be fairly safe, right? Warning, spoiler alert: it is NOT a nice holiday movie. 95% of it was about Mary and Joseph being hunted by the king's henchman, accompanied by his vicious dogs, while the donkey tries to find/save them. Let me say that just because the dogs try to be "good" at the very end, after the henchman falls off a cliff, doesn't make it a happy ending.

Of course, I know that persecution, hatred and violence existed and was part of the history. But Hollywood, please don't sell this to unsuspecting parents as a feel good holiday film! My child said to me afterwards, "I never want to see that movie again!" - this 4yr old is wiser than the producers.
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10/10
Neat and Good movie
larrylia12 September 2018
The movie is really good. Such a Neat plot and good animation too.
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