If you’re tired of watching the same old Christmas specials every year allow me to introduce you to Klaus, a Netflix original that is sure to capture your heart.
Klaus was released on Netflix in August of 2019. As a Netflix original movie, you may not have very high hopes that this movie will interest you, and I don’t blame you. After all, Netflix originals are notorious for being controversial, mediocre or just plain bad. But Klaus is not only a well written, uniquely animated movie, it’s also an interesting new take on the lore of Christmas. So, what is Klaus about?
The story of Klaus follows Jesper, the spoiled, entitled son of a wealthy postmaster who owns a very successful postal service. Jespers father sends Jesper to the miserable town of Smeerenburg with the goal of delivering 6,000 letters in a year. If he fails, he will be cut off from the family fortune. Populating the town are two rival families, the boisterous Ellingboes and the dark Krums, who have a cartoonish hatred towards each other. He soon meets Klaus, a reclusive man with an enormous stock of toys, and Alva, a dejected school teacher turned fish merchant. From here, Jesper must meet his goal of 6,000 letters while surviving the towns crazy inhabitants.
That’s the basic plot of Klaus, but what makes the movie so unique? Why should you watch it?
Well, if you’ve seen the trailer or clips of the movie, the first thing you take note of is the interesting style of animation. Does it look familiar? If it does, it is because Klaus is done in traditional 2D animation. The same animation style seen back in the 70’s and 80’s with Disney classics, that ultimately died back in the 90’s with the rise of computer animation. The nostalgia of the animation is combined with 3D rendering, giving the movie its unique look and animation style. I bring this up because of how laborious this style of animation is. It is frame by frame animation. Not only that, but the animators behind Klaus did a remarkable job at creating gorgeous backgrounds and fluid animation in a style not seen anywhere else. So, if your looking for a visually stunning movie, Klaus is for you. I put this first because while the animation is nice, it is nothing compared to the writing, story, and characters in the movie.
More than anything else, Klaus is a fantastic family movie. It checks all of the boxes for an enjoyable holiday classic for kids and adults. If you didn’t know, Sergio Pablos, the director of Despicable Me, wrote and directed Klaus. So you know that this movie will be full of fun gags and laugh out loud moments. The slapstick in this movie are some of the funniest I’ve ever watched and the jokes are hilarious and appeal to all age groups. However, like how the movie can be funny when it wants to, it can also pull on your heartstrings when the time comes.
As I said in the beginning, Klaus tackles the lore of many of our Christmas traditions and beliefs.
From why Santa comes down the Chimney, to the elves, to why Santa delivers toys on a sleigh led by flying reindeer. What you need to remember is that the movie shows why we think these things, when in the movies reality, they happen for completely different reasons. It’s fun to watch Klaus unravel our Christmas traditions and lore in increasingly interesting and clever ways.
The characters are what is most enjoyable about this movie. They’re all charming and interesting in their own way, even from the start. The character development is done really well and it is satisfying to watch the characters grow. I can’t talk about character development much without entering spoiler territory, but it’s heartwarming to watch the characters and even the townsfolk break away from their miserable lives and become happier people.
Klaus is much more than another Netflix original, It is a heartwarming Christmas tale with wonderful characters, clever moments, and moments that get you right in the feels. It is a subversive take on Christmas lore. I would absolutely recommend you watch Klaus and add it to your list of Must Watch specials for the holiday.