The Once-ler, a ruined industrialist, tells the tale of his rise to wealth and subsequent fall, as he disregarded the warnings of a wise old forest creature called the Lorax about the environmental destruction caused by his greed.
Watching it is like watching the spectacle of a class clown at their best: you laugh at their jokes, instigate their defiance, and "ooooh" when they get in trouble.
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Let's compare this to the 2012 movie, shall we:Budget: 1972 version: Probably under $1,0002012 version: $70 millionRuntime: 1972 version: 25 mins2012 version: 1 hour 35 minsAnimation: 1972 Version: Hand-drawn2012 version: Computer animatedWell, strangely enough, with enough effort, a movie with 1/70,000th the budget of a kid's sellout movie, surpasses it in every way imaginable. The 1972 version really has a message. While the 2012 version seems to avoid the actual 'we need to help the environment' theme, the 1972 version shows that we are not doing enough to do so. It has a meaning, and therefore gives everyone a reason to watch it. Watching it did not make you feel like you were being subjected to an advertising sellout and made you really think about the environment as a whole. I think the 1972 version is a brilliant masterpiece, that did justice to Dr Seuss' work. The 2012 version however, stuck the Lorax on a Mazda advertisement. This just shows how much the 1972 version respected the source material compared to the 2012 version, and why it remains a masterpiece.
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I love Dr Seuss and I love the cartoon television specials based on his work, the live-action movies excepting The 5000 Fingers of Dr T not so much. The Lorax is one of Dr Seuss' best stories and the 1972 television special is one of the classics too. It has a wonderful message that is still relevant now, simple and I think beautiful animation, catchy songs, witty dialogue, timeless characters that have their conflicts(especially Once-Ler), a story that is just as charming, whimsical and surreal as Dr Seuss' writing and stories and great voice acting from Eddie Albert and especially Bob Holt. I know this is not adding very much to the previous reviews, but anything I wanted to say about The Lorax has been said brilliantly already and better than I could do. I haven't seen the recent movie yet(doesn't come out until July where I live), I am very dubious in all honesty but even if it does turn out better than expected I don't think it will surpass this classic. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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Wise old forest creature the Lorax (beautifully voiced by Bob Holt) tries to warn greedy and ruthless industrialist the Once-ler (also voiced by Holt with suitably sinister aplomb) about the potential harm of chopping down all the trees in the woods he's the self-appointed protector of. Alas, the Once-ler doesn't listen to the Lorax's warning and eventually lots of severe irreparable harm is wrought on the woods. This TV special manages to persuasively articulate a pertinent ecological message in a humorous, yet still relevant and respectful way without ever becoming too preachy or heavy-handed. Yes, we still do have the trademark smart and witty wordplay, a wealth of lively and engaging songs, colorful and creative animation, and a certain playful air, but underneath all the deceptive silliness is a totally serious and heartfelt concern about the well being of the earth as well as a still timely and topical statement about the evils of deforestation, the dark side of so-called progress, and the savage damage beget by corporate avarice and amorality run dangerously amok. Indeed, the environmental havoc the Once-ler brings upon the land with his factory is profoundly grim and depressing to behold. The fact that this TV special's central message hasn't dated a bit speaks volumes about its considerable artistic merit. An excellent and admirable program.
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As Dr. Seuss's work was usually politically charged,* "The Lorax" does a good job looking at the environment. Scary is how realistic the book/movie eventually became (especially under George W. Bush). But it does have an element of hope to it. I guess that it makes sense to have Eddie Albert narrate, given his environmental work. After watching the movie, you just might feel like speaking for the trees, and all other wildlife.*"The Cat in the Hat" was promoting rebellion, "Yertle the Turtle" was about the class system, "The Butter Battle Book" was about the Cold War-era arms buildup.