Four Images That Prove Tintin Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie

Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie

The Adventures of Tintin: the Secret of the Unicorn is one of the most ambitious movie adaptations ever created — director Steven Spielberg and producer Peter Jackson have gone to insane lengths to craft a CG, motion-capture recreation of Herge’s ambitious art vistas.

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Europeans are getting to see the results for themselves, starting this weekend — but you can also get a look at how the movie handles two huge widescreen Herge sequences, with our exclusive concept art from The Art of The Adventures of Tintin. Check out four full-page spreads below.

The Art of The Adventures of Tintin is a gorgeous art book, which isn’t too surprising for something that springs from the demented minds at Weta Digital. Some of the art in this book — including some recreations of some classic covers of other Tintin books — has to be seen to be believed. All of the weird science fictional aspects of Tintin’s world, from the checkerboard moon rocket to Professor Calculus’ high-tech bubble-cockpit submarine, have been recreated. If you’ve ever had a fetish to see the “fetish” statue from The Broken Ear up close and digital, here’s your chance.

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Plus you get to see how they created each of the characters using CG — and you get a sense of just how close we’ve gotten to escaping from the dreaded Uncanny Valley with CG humans. (Will this be the movie that pushes us over the edge once and for all?) For major characters like Tintin and Captain Haddock, Weta staff dressed up as the characters and did two short live-action screen tests, before it was decided to make the film fully CG — and the live-action version of Captain Haddock was Peter Jackson himself. The photo of Peter Jackson in the trademark sailor hat and anchor sweater is amazing.

Every aspect of Tintin’s world has been lavishly illustrated and detailed, and for anybody who grew up idolizing Herge it’s a bit of a revelation.

We’re lucky to be able to share four page spreads from the book with you. Click to enlarge, or right-click and select “open link in new tab”:

Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie
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Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie
Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie
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Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie
Illustration for article titled Four Images That Prove emTintin/em Could Be an Unforgettably Beautiful Movie
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The Art of the Adventures of Tintin is available on Nov. 1 from Weta and Harper Collins

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DISCUSSION

While I agree that Tintin looks pretty, I wouldn't use the word beautiful. The style has a wonderful attention to detail but so far looks characterless. I've seen about ten minutes of the film and I can say that there is imagery I like and imagery I think looks sort of ordinary. I don't MIND Tintin being CG - I just wish they had developed more of a style. The Phantom Menace has a distinct texture and mood that reality or traditional animation can't produce and I LIKE it. Tintin is very pretty but it just doesn't have FEELING.

Now all this is taking the CG out of context. The STORY is what matters. I will see Tintin and if the story is compelling, I'll be in. But the animation, apart from looking very detailed and studied doesn't itself have anything to say.

And as a total nit picker - some of the character animation just looks sort of rushed. But it is possible I was shown the worst clip out of two hours of animation so take that for what it is worth.