The Polar Express

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Year Released: 2004
Rating: 1.5

Straight from the miniscule but beautifully detailed children's book comes this CGI-happy adaptation, trying so very hard to be a crowd pleaser and a video game that, at distinct points throughout the movie, it switches to first person perspective and sends your visual cortex in all directions (for the IMAX version, bring Dramamine). With such thin source material, there's plenty of padding - tickets flying away, singing, dancing waiters - and enough positive feelings to send a recluse on a killing spree: if you don't believe in the power of Christmas and its place in your heart, Robbie Z. and his digital schmaltz are determined to choke it out of you. As a kid, I would have hated this.