The Adventures of Tintin (2011)

 ●  English ● Running Time: TBA

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This mysterious animation adventure thriller follows the dangerous sequence of events that unfold when Tintin, while shopping at an outdoor market in 1955 Brussels, Belgium, buys a miniature model of a ship, the Unicorn. When the model accidentally breaks revealing a mysterious parchment scroll, Tintin finds himself being drawn into a dangerous investigation of a long lost ship that sank with a precious treasure on board. Can its location be found? Will Tintin succeed in getting to the bottom of the secret of the Unicom before he finds his life in danger?
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Jamie Bell

Crew: Steven Spielberg (Director)

Genres: Action, Adventure, Animation, Mystery

Release Dates: 21 Dec 2011 (India)

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Did you know? This was the first non-Pixar movie to win the "Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Picture" since the category was first introduced. Read More
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Film Type:
Feature Film
Colour Info:
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Errors in Geography
Tintin refers to a wall map to locate Bagghar from the clue he has found. He finds it very quickly in Morocco although the map is plainly of fictional islands looking more like Indonesia.

Factual Mistake
The photographers shooting Bianca Castafiore use cameras like the Graflex Speed Graphic. While it was correct that the image on the ground glass focusing screen would be upside down, that image could only be seen if the film (sheet film holder) was not in place. In normal use, the photographer would have likely used the rangefinder and the top-mounted wire frame viewer - never looking at the ground glass focusing screen.

Factual Mistake
The photographers shooting Bianca Castafiore would have been using flash bulbs. These were single-use devices made up of a glass bulb filled with oxygen and a magnesium filament. While they are sometimes shown ejecting a bulb, they often manage to get multiple shots from a single bulb.

Factual Mistake
When the ship leaves the harbor early in the film, the starboard side of the ship passes a red navigation light. That light should have been green.

Revealing Mistakes
Tintin's wallet is pulled out of his back pocket while it is clearly buttoned shut.

Revealing Mistakes
When Bianca Castafiore is singing all the glass in the room shatters, even some spectacles, yet still Sakharine's spectacles do not.

Revealing Mistakes
When the Unicorn picks up Red Rackham's ship by the mast and hoists it into the air, the footage of Red Rackham's ship swinging towards the screen begins, then cuts after barely a second and swings towards the screen again.

Revealing Mistakes
At the end of the film, Tintin is letting the gold coins fall from his hand back into the globe; in the wide shot all the coins clearly fall from his hand. In the next shot, the last of the coins fall a second time.

Character Error
Allen orders his mate to bring TNT and the mate returns with dynamite. Dynamite contains no TNT, but is actually stabilized nitroglycerin.

Character Error
The seaplane is marked CN-3411 and Tintin says that the plane is the Portuguese Markings, but the code CN-3411 are the Moroccan Markings.

When Tintin returns from the library to find his 'Unicorn' missing, the sofa is back to normal position. It was upturned before he left, when Snowy was chasing the cat.

When Tintin and the captain are trying to refuel the plane, the gas cap appears and disappears in consecutive shots.

When Tintin shows Thompson and Thomson the newspaper Barnaby was marking with blood after being injured, there is a large, round bloodstain at the end of the newspapers name. When they are outside saying goodbye, the only bloodstain in that area is a finger-thick stain of blood going downwards at about the middle of the page.

When Bianca Castafiore is about to sing, the music played is introducing an aria from Barber of Seville, by Rossini. When she starts singing, it is an aria from a completely different opera, Roméo et Juliette, by Gounod.

When Tintin is in the Library and the man is approaching him from behind the bookshelves, he stops two shelves away. In the next shot he is at the first shelf and able to see Tintin.

A common error: in some of the fight scenes, the bad guys are using what appear to be German-made MP 40 or possibly MP 38 machine pistols. As their names imply, these were designed in 1940 and 1938 respectively, so would not have been invented at the time the action takes place.

In the market Sakharine offers to write a check for the model of the Unicorn using a retractable ballpoint pen (you can even hear the click). Ballpoints were not sold in Belgium or the UK until December 1945 (and came into widespread use in the 1950s) and the retractable ballpoint pen was not invented until 1959. The movie takes place in the early 1930s based on the dates on the newspaper cutouts showing Tintin's reporting.

Upon arriving on Morocco, Bianca Castafiore states "it's my first time in the Third World". This term was first coined in 1952, and did not refer to such countries until later years.

After Sakharine's car is smashed against several walls while dangling from a crane, it is shown to have the remains of broken tempered safety glass windows on the side. This is the glass which breaks into tiny segments and is fitted to all new cars, but it wasn't used until the late 1930s. As the film takes place before this, the car's glass should have shattered into large shards like a house window.
This was the first-ever animated film directed by Steven Spielberg.

Steven Spielberg enjoyed working with the virtual camera so much, he did a lot of his own camera work in the movie.

To prepare for his role as Captain Haddock, Andy Serkis read the majority of the "Tintin" comics. He later commented that they had a surreal quality, similar to the Monty Python films.

According to Steven Spielberg, when shooting he always keeps one eye closed when framing a shot, so that he can visualize the film in 2D ("the way viewers would"). But on this film he had both of his eyes open, as it was 3D and he wanted to treat the film like live-action.

Originally, Steven Spielberg was going to do a live-action adaptation of Tintin, and called Peter Jackson to ask if his VFX company Weta Digital would work on the film, in particular creating a CGI Snowy. Jackson, as it turned out, was a longtime fan of Tintin, and convinced Spielberg that live action would not do justice to the comic books, and that motion capture was the best way of representing Hergé's world of Tintin. However, Snowy would still be CGI.

This is the first PG-rated film Steven Spielberg has directed since Hook (1991).

During filming, Guillermo del Toro, Stephen Daldry and David Fincher paid a visit to the set.

This was the first non-Pixar movie to win the "Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Picture" since the category was first introduced.

Screenwriter Steven Moffat claims he was "love-bombed" by Steven Spielberg into writing the script for this film, with Spielberg promising to shield him from studio interference with his writing.

This film combines the Tintin tales 'The Crab with the Golden Claws' (Tintin befriends Captain Haddock whose ship has been hijacked by smugglers) and the two-parter 'The Secret of the Unicorn' and 'Red Rackham's Treasure' (Tintin and Haddock search for pirate treasure).

When the film was in development in 1984, Steven Spielberg wanted Jack Nicholson to play Captain Haddock.

While their plane is falling from the sky, Haddock and Snowy drink blobs of floating alcohol while in zero gravity. This is a reference to a similar scene in the Tintin comic Explorers on the Moon.

Since the Tintin comic book series is virtually unknown in the United States, this movie was first released in Europe, hoping that favorable reviews would warm American audiences to the movie. Despite a favorable 77 million dollar box office in the USA, this is a relatively rare example of a movie produced in the USA that was considerably more successful overseas (296 million dollar).

At the beginning of this movie, when Tintin is having his likeness drawn, the other likenesses posted in the background are of characters featured in various Tintin books and as shown in the inside covers of every Tintin book.

This movie was released on the 30th anniversary of Steven Spielberg's Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981).

Thomas Brodie-Sangster was originally set to play the titular character, but had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts. Jamie Bell, who had worked with Peter Jackson on King Kong (2005), then came aboard to play Tintin.

The painter at the beginning bears the likeness of Hergé, creator of the 'Tintin' comics. Furthermore, he draws Tintin's portrait in Herge's style. Using Hergé's likeness is an homage to the artist's own private joke of incorporating the likenesses of friends and family in his Tintin works.

This is Steven Spielberg's first comic-book adaptation. He had earlier been considered to do Superman (1978).

Steven Spielberg has been an avid fan of 'The Adventures of Tintin' comic books since 1981, when a review compared Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) to Tintin. His secretary bought him French-language editions of each book, but Spielberg did not have to understand them: he immediately fell in love with its art. Meanwhile, 'Tintin' creator Hergé became a fan of Spielberg (reports say he "thought Spielberg was the only person who could ever do Tintin justice.")

This is Andy Serkis's third collaboration with Peter Jackson, as well as his fourth motion-capture role (he had earlier played the creatures Gollum and King Kong (2005) in features directed by Jackson and Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011)). Sometime after being cast, Serkis joked that he was worried Peter Jackson would cast him as Tintin's dog Snowy.