Reality check: Chuck Jones’ holiday classic Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is more than half a century old. Time for a Hollywood feature reboot, right? Yes, but it’s also only 26 minutes long. How to make it killer without just obvious filler? Cast Benedict Cumberbatch as your anti-hero.
“Today we will do mean things, and we will do them in style,” the Grinch tells his trusty dog Max in the first trailer for Illumination’s Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch. Eschewing the dialogue from the rhyming book, he proceeds to do just that and more as the unsuspecting Whos prepare for Christmas. Living in a cave on Mount Crumpet rigged with contraptions for his day-to-day needs, the green grounch only sees his neighbors in Who-ville when he runs out of food.
When the Whos declare they are going to make Christmas three times bigger this year, the Grinch realizes there is only one way for him to gain some peace and quiet: He must steal Christmas. You nauseate me, Mr. Grinch.
The animation style is pleasing, with more than a little nod to Jones’ original, and there’s an update on “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” that Thurl Ravenscroft likely would approve. Universal Pictures opens the film from directors Scott Mosier & Yarrow Cheney, writer Michael LeSieur and Despicable Me/Minions producers Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy on November 9. So bust open a can of Who-hash and dig the trailer above.