‘Please look after this bear’

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From "deepest darkest Peru" comes the movie "Paddington." The bear with the crumpled felt hat and coat, suitcase and perpetual love of orange marmalade makes the transition beautifully from Michael Brown's 20 Paddington Bear books to the screen.

The story begins when an earthquake destroys the idyllic home of Paddington's family. His Aunt Lucy packs the young bear up with a note that says, "Please look after this bear. Thank you."

Aunt Lucy hopes that Paddington will find the kindly explorer who made an open invitation to the family years ago to visit London.

After he arrives in London, Paddington picks up with the Brown family much to the chagrin of Mr. Brown, played by "Downton Abbey's" Hugh Bonneville. He's chased around London by an evil taxidermist, Millicent, played by Nicole Kidman.

The special effect that makes Paddington and his family come alive is phenomenal. The movie pokes some fun at Kidman's ex-husband Tom Cruise with certain "Mission Impossible" jibes. There's also a little homage paid to the Indiana Jones series.

The movie was produced by David Heyman of Harry Potter fame, and a few of the actors from that series appear, like Julie Walters (Mrs. Bird) and Jim Broadbent (Mr. Gruber). Fans of the British science fiction television series "Dr. Who" will recognize the new Who, Peter Capaldi (Mr. Curry).

It's a wonderful family film that adults will like too. The movie is rated PG. There is some slightly gross humor related to ear wax, plus the potential stuffing of beloved Paddington could be upsetting to younger children.

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2015