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An expanded take on the classic children's story which maintains the original's warmth and humor.

DVD Review: The Littlest Angel (2011)

The Littlest Angel is among the most popular children’s books of all time. I loved it when I was a child, and my children loved it when I read it to them. Now, from Anchor Bay films, comes a new CGI animation film of the classic story, with some added elements that, while not really adding to the story, do not detract from the basic message.

The Littlest Angel simply does not know how to behave in heaven. He is still more small boy than cherub. In this version of the story — unlike in the original — he has a schoolmaster who despairs of his behavior, but, just like in the original, he is eventually sent to the Angel of Peace who tries to help him understand his place. But Littlest just can’t forget his life on earth. So, with the help of an angel pup named Halo, he returns to earth to find his greatest treasure: a box he hid under the floorboards of his own room.

The Littlest AngelIn this version of the story, the schoolmaster and his not very smart but kindhearted sidekick also return to earth to help Halo and Littlest get back to Heaven. This is probably done to add an element of humor for modern children, but is not really needed. While on earth, Littlest also performs three good deeds and gets wings big enough to fly with ease.

But the core of the original story is that all this takes place at the time when Jesus is being born, and all the angels are gathering their greatest gifts for Him. Littlest does not have anything to give except his treasure box, which contains a rock, a butterfly wing, and a few other such treasures as little boys love. So he gives it to the baby, but then he is afraid that he has been irreverent to offer such a gift to God’s son. Of course, in the end, his gift is the best because it was given with love and sacrifice.

The story is still charming and heart-warming in this new version, but at 83 minutes it may be a bit long for it’s intended audience, which should be 5-8 year old children. Still, it is a cute version and families will enjoy it. You may want to read the original story, too, though.

About Rhetta Akamatsu

I am an author of non-fiction books and an online journalist. My books include Haunted Marietta, The Irish Slaves, T'ain't Nobody's Business If I Do: Blues Women Past and Present, Southern Crossroads: Georgia Bluesand Sex Sells: Women in Photography and Film.

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