I walk past yellow and red balloons and gigantic cartoon posters, and take my complimentary popcorn on the way to my seat. When I turn to face the cinema seats, my jaw drops. It’s 10:30 on a Saturday morning and the V-Max Event Cinema in Innaloo is packed full of kids and parents waiting to watch Tom and Jerry: The Movie. There are already popcorn buckets strewn everywhere, mouths furiously slurping giant drink cups and a small, pink starry cardigan laying on the stairs.
I manage to find a seat just as the event organiser is holding up the cardigan, calling out the lost property. The lights go down and, despite my initial cringe at eating cinema food at this time in the morning, I crunch into some popcorn.
For an old-school, die-hard fan of Tom and Jerry, I had low expectations for this new rendition of the crazy shenanigans this cat and mouse duo get up to. I was cheerfully surprised with the film. The action-packed fights and adventures of the pair echoed their chaotic energy I remember from my childhood binge watches of the cartoon. Although the animation was modern and I yearned to see the classic grainy, limited-colour-scheme animation, I was impressed with the special effects. Mixing animation with actors often flops in films, but this representation was admirable in Tom and Jerry: The Movie.
I do, however, have a bone to pick with Chloe Grace Moretz. I found her performance forced and inauthentic. She was just trying too hard. This film needed someone with a casual confidence, who would slot into the chaos of Tom and Jerry’s rambunctious rampages with ease and add comedic value. Moretz took my attention away from the stars of the movie, and not in a good way. Of course, there was a certain budget for this film, which excluded the likes of Emma Stone, Florence Pugh or Maisie Williams (whom any of which would’ve raised the bar for this film). But it was Moretz’s fingernails-on-a-blackboard performance that had me cringing from beginning to end.
Moretz aside, this film was great entertainment for the kids in the cinema, whose popcorn was flying as they cackled at Tom’s blunders and Jerry’s cunning tricks. I found myself laughing along on multiple occasions and was glad to revisit a childhood pastime of mine. Somehow, watching tall, pink lumps grow on Tom’s head after Jerry surprises him with a hammer never seems to get old.
Tom and Jerry: The Movie is playing in cinemas now.