Tintin et le Temple du Soleil

Synopsis: A team of explorers discover the tomb of Rascar-Capac and they all fall victim to a mysterious illness that puts them into a deep sleep. In trying to solve the mystery, Professor Calculus is kidnapped and taken to Peru by Indians. Tintin is called to solve the mystery.

Tintin et le Temple du Soleil 7.5

After revisiting ‘L’Affaire Tournesol’, I was concerned that my Tintin marathon would be a painful one; from experience, I know that they weren’t transitioned to the screen very well (the ’90s TV series, for instance, featured quite a number of horrendous adaptations of Hergé’s books! sad0133 Free Sad Emoticons)

However, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of this production. It’s not a perfect film, but, with properly tapered expectations, it delivers the goods:

For starters, it’s a much better adaptation of the books than ‘L’Affaire Tournesol’ – which is astonishing given that they squeezed two books into a 75 minutes film, whereas the other adapted one book into a 55 minute show. I’ll have to read the originals again to see exactly what was changed, but you can feel the differences in both.

Having said that, from what I recall, they trimmed most of the first book (‘Les 7 boules de cristal’) for ‘Tintin et le Temple du Soleil’, but kept just enough material to justify the second part of the story. With the able assistance of a cartoon Hergé, they included an intro that set the scene and started things off on the right foot. It works beautifully. happy0024 Free Emoticons   Happy

Secondly, the animation is much improved over the last one – and it may very well be superior to the next one, ‘Tintin et le Lac aux requins’. It’s certainly not of Disney-level quality, but it’s a decent enough film overall. I suspect that it was quite a nice-looking animated film at the time of its release.

My main beefs are the staging of the action sequences and the comedy, as both were extremely lacklustre. If only they had kept Hergé’s style it would have worked – most of these gags were lifted right off the page, and they worked perfectly there. As for the action… well, while ’60s animation was quite limited, creativity isn’t – so there’s simply no excuse for the lameness of it. mad0071 Free Emoticons   Anger

Nevertheless, the end result makes for an enjoyable adventure that is sure to please old and new fans alike. It’s true enough to the books to satisfy purists, all the while keeping the runtime at a family-friendly length. I would always suggest sticking with the books first (the detail that Hergé put in his books cannot be replicated), but ‘Tintin et le Temple du Soleil’ is good fun. happy0027 Free Emoticons   Happy

Post scriptum: I watched the Canadian DVD edition released by Kaïbou. It features a cropped image to fit 1.78:1 TVs, from what was likely a 1.66:1 picture in cinemas. The framing isn’t too bad here, actually, but, as a result of the cropping, the top and bottom of the animation is missing – and, frankly, that’s just plain wrong. mad0071 Free Emoticons   Anger

I wrote to Kaïbou to ask if they would re-release the film in its original ratio, but I was told that they released what the owners of the work gave them and they had NO intention of re-releasing it. sad0038 Free Sad Emoticons

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