I don't often purchase movies sight unseen, without at least checking the Plugged-In review first. I was busy with Christmas prep at the time though, and it was the only new children's movie out, and so I bought it, and sent my daughters off to the family room to watch it, while I started mixing up a batch of gingerbread.
The animation style of the movie didn't look very appealing to me, but I've felt that way about other movies the children have ended up enjoying - so I took a chance.
The gingerbread hadn't even come out of the oven though, before the girls were back in the kitchen, scolding in unison.
"Maaawm! That was not a family friendly movie."
"They took God's name in vain! And, it's a bad story."
"We turned it off."
Can you hear my sigh?
I would have learned all of that if I had gone my usual route and checked out the Plugged-In review first. I would also have learned that the movie was based loosely on a children's novel. And, had I known that, I might have picked up the book first, and discovered a truly delightful story sooner.
Because, although I cannot recommend The Box Trolls to you - you might like it, we all have our own tastes, but my children did not care for it - I can however, highly recommend the story it was loosely based on, Alan Snow's Here Be Monsters.
The story is still strange. It's the sort of book you might expect to find in Roald Dahl's library, if he had ever decided to team up and write a children's novel with Lewis Caroll, or maybe even Dr. Seuss, that is. But, it's also fanciful, fun, and almost impossible to put down. And, thankfully, as is the case with so many novels, bares almost no resemblance to it's film adaptation.