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At Theaters: 11/10/2004 On Video: 11/22/2005
Rated: G Length: 1 hr. 40 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 439961
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.
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Storyline Heading
When a doubting young boy takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe.

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Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Animated Adventure - Visually Stunning! The animation is unlike anything you've ever seen. It's incredibly realistic. It's basically a sweet Christmas story that's targeted primarily to young children. The pace is a little slow at first but once it picks up there's always something interesting going on.

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Cast and Crew Heading
Tom Hanks (Voice of Hero Boy, Conductor & others)
Michael Jeter (Voice of Smokey and Steamer)
Director: Robert Zemeckis CAST AWAY, WHAT LIES BENEATH
Production Notes Heading
Creating A Visual Landscape
The Process
Limitless Creativity
Cue The Actors
Soundtrack / Imax 3D
Content Heading
ACTION: LOTS of incredible action throughout.
COMEDY: Fairly minimal humor. Only a few chuckles and about twice as many smiles.

Pictures © Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. ®
All Rights Reserved.

Critic's Review Heading
Very Mixed

The above rating is an average of the critic reviews below.

(Close new window when finished with Full Reviews)

Berardinelli, Internet Critic Full Review
Very Good "The Polar Express" is cinematic magic - a delightful tale guaranteed to enthrall viewers of all ages. For children, this is a glorious adventure, full of excitement, splendor, and plenty of holiday good cheer. For adults, there are deeper meanings to be found, not to mention the bittersweet nostalgia of gazing back through the years to the point where innocence gave way to the curse of maturity.

Roger Ebert Full Review
Excellent "The Polar Express" is a movie for more than one season; it will become a perennial, shared by the generations. It has a haunting, magical quality because it has imagined its world freshly and played true to it, sidestepping all the tiresome Christmas cliches that children have inflicted on them this time of year. The conductor tells Hero Boy he thinks he really should get on the train, and I have the same advice for you.

Note: I've seen the movie twice, once in the IMAX 3-D process that will be available in larger markets. New, oversized 3-D glasses, big enough to fit over your own glasses, light enough so you can forget them, made this the best 3-D viewing experience I've ever had. If there's a choice, try the IMAX version. Or go twice. This is a movie that doesn't wear out.

USA Today Full Review
Above Average Much of the book's lovely, spare dialogue is used, which was a wise decision by Zemeckis and screenwriter Bill Broyles Jr.; the movie is at its best when it adheres to the lyrical original tale. When adventures are added, such as when kids get lost in Santa's vast workshop and wind up in a giant gizmo that wraps gifts, the movie conjures up such manipulative fare as "The Santa Clause."

Note: The rating above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.


Opinion Heading

Based on an Exit Polling of 154 Moviegoers

Ages Age Group
Your Probability of
Enjoying This Movie
Movie To Friends
1-12Children (M/F)
Very High
13-19Teens (M)
Very High
13-19Teens (F)
Very High
20-29Yg Adults (M)
Very High
20-29Yg Adults (F)
Very High
30+Adults (M)
Very High
30+Adults (F)
Very High
*Possible Ratings: Very High, High, Fairly High, About 50/50, Fairly Low, Low, Very Low.

About Our Opinions

Be sure to read the DETAILED OPINIONS
The positive and negative comments made by moviegoers are very
helpful when selecting a movie that's appropriate for you and your family.



The following is the original "What's Worth Watching" write-up for this movie.

Moviegoer Opinions:

We collected 154 moviegoer opinions. OUTSTANDING OPINIONS! An incredible high percentage of "Fantastic" opinions and absolutely no low opinions. Clearly a movie I can HIGHLY RECOMMEND FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY! GO SEE "POLAR EXPRESS." It's a "Must See" on the big screen and if you have an IMAX theater near you it's even more incredible on the giant 3D IMAX screen.

A young boy lies awake in his room one snowy Christmas Eve, excited and alert. Breathing silently. Hardly moving. Waiting.

He's listening for a sound he's afraid that he might never hear – the ringing bells of Santa's sleigh.

The time is five minutes to midnight.

Suddenly, the boy is startled by a thunderous roar. Clearing the mist from his window he sees the most amazing sight – a gleaming black train rumbles to a stop right in front of his house, the steam from its powerful engine hissing through the night sky and the softly falling snowflakes.

The boy rushes outside, clad only in his pajamas and slippers, and is met by the train's conductor who seems to be waiting just for him. "Well, are you coming?” the conductor asks. "Where?”

"Why, to the North Pole, of course. This is the Polar Express!”

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