Veggie Tales: Saint Nicholas: A Story of Joyful Giving (2009) Review
(More customer reviews)Watching Saint Nicholas, one can only note how much better it is than most of the recent holiday specials, which try to have a moral to the story, but end up flat and heavy-handed. VeggieTales, on the other hand, go far beyond morals to express big ideas. The recent VeggieTales movie, The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: A Veggie Tales Movie (Widescreen), was the sort of superior entertainment that, while it enthralls kids, also engages adults. It's hard to believe this featurette is only 45 minutes, because it runs the gamut from light laughs to moving pathos to profound finale, the same arc as a feature film. Adults who happen to walk by while it's on TV will probably find themselves drawn in. Kids will see something new every time.
Bob the tomato tells the true story of St. Nicholas, while Larry the cuke constantly interrupts with more conventional ideas of Santa Claus. The real saint threw bags of money down the chimneys of poor women to save them from being forced into brothels. In this kid-friendly version, young Nick saves the poor from going to jail. Either way, he becomes the patron saint of those who fight human trafficking. The DVD includes ways for kids and families to help a long-established charity called Samaritan's Purse, and a catchy video by Matthew West and Amy Grant, "Give This Christmas Away."
There's an intense scene when the young Nick's parents die, which might be disturbing for very young kids, like similar scenes in Disney films like Bambi. The film is filled with witty asides and references to holiday trivia and packed with well-performed, singable songs. There's even a pirate who makes an appearance from the recent feature film. Bonus features include "Sing Along with Larry", an art gallery, and "Give This Christmas Away" music video. The previews include trailers for current VeggieTales, as well as bits on Cure International, which provides medical help for kids in need, and MOPS, a support group for Mothers Of Pre-Schoolers.
VeggieTales are inspiring on many levels: CGI animation that is second to none, garden-fresh story lines, sparkling wit to laugh-out-loud humor, a rough ride to the happy ending denouement, and they make you feel better, not worse. But this DVD, linking, as it does, an entertaining story to tangible ways to help, may be the biggest idea yet for bringing joy to the world.
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When Junior Asparagus and his Veggie friends learn that Laura Carrot\'s dad has lost his job on Christmas Eve, Bob the Tomato decides to tell the kids a very special story about giving. Using a big storybook and a little imagination, they all travel back to ancient Greece to meet Saint Nicholas — the world\'s greatest giver.