Edit: Rather than keep it from being in Animation Lovers, I decided to simply copy it into here. Sorry for all the updates. D:
So I just got back from Rise of the Guardians...
IT WAS FANTASTIC!!!!
I HAD SO MANY FEELS AND AFTER IT WAS DONE MY FRIEND AND I COULD BARELY SAY ANYTHING BEYOND "EEEEEEEE".
I was surprised by how much of the things in the movie... well, surprised me! The characters had a lot of depth, the story took several twists and turns I wasn't expecting, and it nearly moved me to tears not once, not twice, but almost FIVE TIMES!
I managed to stay away from spoilers on tumblr (not an easy thing, mind you) and so made the movie that much better. For all intents and purposes, all my spoilers will be marked here.
The story is peppered with humour (which I have to point out... caused a bit of mood whiplash at some points) but also yields to some more serious moments. I really, truly cared about what happened to all of the characters, and that kind of emotion makes all the scenes so much more meaningful.
I had heard a bit of complaining online about this, but I thought the portrayal of Pitch and Jack being not so different was well-played throughout the story. Pitch doesn't have to show up all the time to create scenes like this. In fact, the fact that he only shows up at certain times to show their weaknesses means that whatever he's about to do is gonna be important. You knew that Jack wouldn't join Pitch, but that didn't make their scenes together less unsettling.
And re: character depth: I didn't know that the Guardians each represented something meaningful to children. I mean, I figured as much, but they really took the time to show their "centers" and identities, which helped explain why exactly they were losing their power, and how they got it back at the end.
Also, there were several scenes that just melted my heart, namely; the Sandman getting revived at the end, Jack saving and caring for Baby Tooth throughout the movie, Bunnymund and Sophie's scenes, and all of the scenes with Jack and Jamie, but special mention goes out to their hug at the end. You can just SEE Jack think "Someone really does believe and care about me."
This review is very long.... I should end this here.