In this edition of Things You Might Not Have Seen, I will talk about the animated movie Klaus.
What do you do to motivate a spoiled, entitled, and lazy heir of a postal empire?
You ship them off to the most isolated location to work on their… priorities 😂
Jesper Johansson, the lazy, spoiled son, is sent by his father, the Royal Postmaster General, to the town of Smeerensburg with the condition: If Jesper fails to post 6,000 letters within a year, he will be cut off from his family’s fortune. I wasn’t expecting such a harsh slap of reality to Jesper within the first few minutes of the movie. From then onwards, I was intrigued.
The problems Jesper faces:
- No one wants to post any letter in Smeerensburg, as they can’t read or write them.
- The town people hates the mailman.
There is something heartwarming about the animation’s style. It is a children’s storybook come to life. The angles, the colors, the details, the lighting are what you find in the pages of a beloved storybook.
Klaus himself is an isolated, introverted character, who gradually warms up to Jesper as they share a common goal. Jesper wants to post those 6000 letters, so he could get his cushy life back (complete with silk robes). Klaus wants to fulfill a promise to his late wife to give toys to the children.
They both form an unlikely alliance. A simple act of kindness always sparks another, even in a frozen, faraway place. Their small acts of kindness threaten to spill over in Smeerensburg, bringing warmth to the townspeople collective cold hearts.
The movie Klaus has an interesting cast of characters:
The (quietly) dedicated, but loudly overworked, and overlooked teacher turned fishmonger.
The weather beaten and disgruntled townspeople themselves, set out to creating a world record for number of mailmans changed in a year.
The romeo-juliet love story in the middle of the towns’ generational feud.
I think that the main storyline of Klaus suffers from having too many mini stories, cute as they may be. Not enough time was spend exploring them, and there are often blink-and-you-miss resolutions. The movie loses some of the initial whimsy from the beginning. I suppose it could be intentional as the main character Jesper grows up and matures by the end of the movie.
Klaus is a wonderful animation to consider during this holiday season. Thank you for reading! I hope that you discovered something new today ❄☃️