Metascore
46

Mixed or average reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 30
  2. Negative: 6 out of 30
Watch On
  1. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Feb 29, 2012
    83
    The movie is like a less original "WALL•E," but it's still vibrant and touching.
  2. Reviewed by: Pete Hammond
    Mar 1, 2012
    80
    This is purely warm, wonderful, wise and hilarious family entertainment that is fantastic movie fun for everyone.
  3. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Mar 1, 2012
    80
    There is no denying that the environmental message is heavy-handed.
  4. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Mar 2, 2012
    75
    Director Chris Renaud and his team have fun with these dithery, frenetic characters. The film is less special when it slows down and takes a breath of fresh air.
  5. Reviewed by: Jody Mitori
    Mar 2, 2012
    75
    While the movie is funnier than the book, the drawback of this modernized version is that it loses the timeless quality of the story on the page.
  6. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Mar 1, 2012
    75
    Someone in Hollywood ought to speak for the trees, and The Lorax does it with verve and vibrancy.
  7. Reviewed by: Wesley Morris
    Mar 1, 2012
    75
    It's been animated by the same company that made "Despicable Me,'' which is to say you don't know whether to watch The Lorax or lick it.
  8. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Feb 29, 2012
    75
    The result is solidly entertaining - not quite as good as "Horton Hears a Who" or "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" - but unquestionably better than "The Cat in the Hat."
  9. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Feb 29, 2012
    75
    The Lorax is a modest gem, failing to significantly enhance its source material's ideas but still delivering a zany, rollicking, multi-character version of Seuss's environmental cautionary tale.
  10. 70
    Armed with a splendid voice cast and a gorgeously-rendered 3D-CG landscape, Dr. Seuss' The Lorax entertains while delivering it's pro-environmental, anti-greed message wrapped in a bright package of primary colors that truly pop.
  11. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Mar 3, 2012
    67
    There is nice stuff found in The Lorax - Thneedville's artificial nature is inspired - and bad, like the original songs nobody will be humming when they leave the theater. But good intentions don't trump mediocre filmmaking. If that makes me a Grinch, so be it.
  12. Reviewed by: Stan Hall
    Mar 1, 2012
    67
    It's technically impressive but sluggish, with an uneasy mix of cute and gloom. It occasionally finds an effective balance -- mostly in the scenes that explicitly recall the book -- but inevitably lacks Seussian soul.
  13. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Feb 29, 2012
    67
    Although the movie's ecological message is dominant, it's not heavy-handed. Rather, the ecological warnings are tossed out with the same joie de vivre the Once-ler displays when tossing marshmallows to the bears.
  14. Reviewed by: Olly Richards
    Jul 23, 2012
    60
    Lovely to look at and with some fun material not of Seuss' invention, but it's too hectoring, like reading an environmental textbook with jolly pictures.
  15. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Mar 1, 2012
    60
    While softening Geisel's darker themes, they still meld a valuable message into catchy songs, bright images (nicely done in 3D) and funny characters.
  16. Reviewed by: Joshua Rothkopf
    Feb 29, 2012
    60
    Unfortunately, a new problem rears its head: It seems no young audience member can be trusted to enjoy a thoughtful story without a heroic, borderline-obnoxious surrogate (here, he's voiced by Zac Efron) zooming around on a scooter, bonking villainous heads and saving the day.
  17. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Feb 29, 2012
    58
    The handful of songs are catchy, and the whole film feels pleasantly airy. But this is a dark story with a heavy message, and it's been transformed into a harmless, pretty confection. In defanging it for comic effect, the filmmakers have done Seuss as much of a disrespectful disservice as if they'd laid on the fart gags.
  18. 50
    So it's puffed up with lots of extraneous stuff – Super fun for the kids but for grown-ups? Just fluff.
  19. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    Mar 1, 2012
    50
    You know what? The whole thing is harmless.
  20. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Mar 1, 2012
    50
    You couldn't accuse the film of practicing what it preaches: careful stewardship of a precious resource.
  21. Reviewed by: Jonathan Crocker
    Jul 19, 2012
    40
    Fake plastic trees, fake plastic entertainment? The Lorax is immensely colourful, catchy and cheery. Then again, it's also gaudy, bland and recycled. You can do better.
  22. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Mar 3, 2012
    40
    Par for the course in blowout CGI adaptations, a great deal of detail and bustle is gained at the expense of charm - for all the miracles these armies of animators can achieve, they have yet to successfully reproduce a humble artist's line.
  23. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Mar 1, 2012
    40
    This movie version adds a whole lot of other stuff, most of it not very good and not in keeping with the spirit of the Seuss original.
  24. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Mar 1, 2012
    40
    The Lorax is so big, flashy and redundant that it courts precisely the kind of blind consumerism it's supposed to be condemning. It doesn't trust kids to sit still and pay attention for even a minute.
  25. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Mar 1, 2012
    38
    A cautionary environmental tale with a thin veneer of entertainment on top. With its cotton-candy-colored palette of orange, pink and purple truffula trees, it looks like a bowl of fuzzy Froot Loops. But it goes down like an order of oatmeal. Sure, it's good for you. It's just not terribly good.
  26. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Feb 29, 2012
    30
    The key to Seuss' tales, as with all good fables, is not only their cleverness but their surpassing elegance and simplicity, qualities that this busy, over-cluttered contraption of a movie seems entirely uninterested in replicating.
  27. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Mar 2, 2012
    25
    Yikes! Chris Renaud and Kyle Balda direct strictly for short-attention spans on a fruit-loopy palette that made me want to puke. Had Dr. Seuss lived (he died in 1991), I'm confident he would have puked as well.
  28. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Mar 1, 2012
    25
    The Lorax is awful, like chronic disease.
  29. 20
    Dr. Seuss's The Lorax [sic] isn't Seussian in spirit. It's shrill and campy and stuffed with superfluous characters.
  30. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Mar 1, 2012
    10
    The movie is a noisy, useless piece of junk, reverse-engineered into something resembling popular art in accordance with the reigning imperatives of marketing and brand extension.
User Score
6.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 175 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 54
  2. Negative: 12 out of 54
  1. Mar 2, 2012
    9
    The Lorax is entertaining, visually beautiful, funny and very sweet. Yet it isn't as deep as we really want it to be. Still, overall it isThe Lorax is entertaining, visually beautiful, funny and very sweet. Yet it isn't as deep as we really want it to be. Still, overall it is solid family entertainment. I give this movie 88%. Full Review »
  2. Mar 9, 2012
    8
    Entertaining, charming, funny but not of the better adaptions of the Dr. Seuss books(though still better then crap like the Cat in the Hat).
  3. Mar 2, 2012
    5
    Flagrantly inferior to its literary predecessor, 'The Lorax' sends a skewed message to its viewers, one that is less timely and memorable, andFlagrantly inferior to its literary predecessor, 'The Lorax' sends a skewed message to its viewers, one that is less timely and memorable, and more puffed with crass one-liners and subtle condescension; an utter denigration to one of the greatest children's authors to ever live. However, more maddening of all is the lack of regard and reverence to Geisel's words, mellifluously melodic syllables accompanied by sticking alliteration and rhythmic patterns; they are defecated on. Much to the viewer's chagrin, the film does not include a narration: how does a 'Seuss' adaptation not have a narration? Only in one instance are words from the book uttered, albeit words offensively disparaged. Early on in the film, Audrey (voiced by Swift), a character nowhere to be found in the book, quotes Geisel in regard to the truffula trees: "The touch of their tufts was much softer than silk, and they had the sweet smell of fresh butterfly milk." This is relieving to hear and see. However, such memorable quote is replied by Ted (voiced by Efron) with "Wow, what does that even mean?" And, Audrey says, "I know, right?" So, what we have here is a character who was not even in the book, now in the film, belittling the very words which the film, itself, was shaped. This example, ultimately sums up the direction of the film; changing what wasn't already broken, and breaking it. Don't become too skeptical, 'Lorax' does contain rich, diaphanous colors that bring to life some of what Geisel's book intended to show through words, however, the film's attempts to put a new spin on things, especially by adding characters not found in the book, creates a blurred focus and disconnect, which results in a story that looks more like something you've seen before as opposed to the original, timeless literary version. Much of this is emanated by the title character, who voiced by DeVito, becomes too-well-overdone, and eventually becomes irksome and forced; he appears much more in the film than the book. I understand the film's casting of DeVito," again, to "spin things up," however, his 'Lorax' character doesn't match the same prominence as the book, rather, DeVito comes across as too imperiously assuming; an unpleasant, discordant "Jor-zey" inflection that becomes old, very quickly. I can't imagine the filmmakers wanting that. As a whole, 'Lorax' is a propaganda filled, "green-pushing" adult-first animation film that looks impressive, but inevitably sends a twisted message to kids that "it's great to help the environment, but only to further oneself in the process." Moreover, the film is, for the greater portion of an hour, 'Lorax' is partially fulfilling, mostly to do with the visuals, however, the most compelling sequence lies in the last 20-25 minutes, once the garrulous 'Lorax' and dainty animals are finally exited from view. Having said such, only ephemerally does the film endow the same sense of loss and somberness found in the book. Lastly, the underlying theme and parable of the film is not so hidden, as even the kids will, atleast minimally, capture what it's aiming to say. However, the guise with which it sticks with throughout (large smiles, balmy jokes, and fuzzy "fluff"), is more than enough to divert the kid's thought-provaction. In 3-D, though, the action doesn't quite match the subject material. For most adults, the slapstick won't fly very far; it's a "T-I-M-B-E-R" kind of spectacle; falling before your eyes. Full Review »