I miss the old Robert Zemeckis. You know, the one that directed Back to the Future, Forrest Gump and Castaway; those broad, fantastic stories with actual people. That is not to say that Beowulf and A Christmas Carol don't have their merits and place, but the whole "dead behind the eyes" thing is still rather unnerving. The director recently said that he will use motion capture for for the Roger Rabbit sequel, which, in a way, makes it seem that he is more in love with the technology than the story (unless they somehow work it into the plot.) Despite the uncanny valley factor, though, the computer-generated films have been bringing in the dough, and now Zemeckis has said that he will be tackling his third Christmas-themed film with The Nutcracker.

Reported first by Pajiba, the film will not be an adaptation of the Tchaikovsky ballet, but rather the original novel, "The Nutcracker and the Mouse King," written by E.T.A. Hoffmann. Much like the ballet, the film will explore the war between the dolls and mice, but will also explain the nutcracker's origin and the curse that turned him into a doll.

Zemeckis may have finally found his answer to his creepiness problem. As a collective audience, we are not used to seeing dolls with souls, so it may be the easiest transition yet. As long as we can stomach the scenes with Marie, Fritz and the rest of the family, it has a chance to be his least unsettling film since 2000.

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