Arthur Christmas (Sarah Smith, Aardman Animations)

From the people that brought Wallace and Gromit to life comes this Christmassy 3-D adventure guaranteed to bring out the festive spirit in every Scrooge.

With children in the digital age asking awkward questions (Outnumbered-style) like ‘if Santa’s real, why can’t I see him on Google maps?” and ‘how is Santa coping with population growth?’ it comes to Aardman to bring the magic back into Christmas and keep kids believing.

With high-tech gadgetry delivering speed and efficiency, every tradition has been updated. iPhone-like devices with GPS tracking systems lead through sky pathways, while the sleigh-turned-spaceship converts milk and cookies into biofuel.

Heading operations is Santa’s eldest son Steve (Hugh Laurie) whose military style leadership over thousands of elves keeps ageing dad Santa (Jim Broadbent) in check. The workshop has delivered its most productive year reaching millions of children. However, in the early hours of the morning one present is found undelivered; a sparkly pink bike. Filled with festive cheer, Santa’s younger son Arthur (James McAvoy) and his grandsanta (Bill Nighy), set out on a mission to deliver the gift before sunrise.

With some excellent writing that delivers chuckles and charm, this is sure to please both children and their parents. The spectacular scenery and genius use of cultural references make this a new Christmas classic. Sentimental without slushiness, this is a story which is both heart-warming and uplifting. A true gift.

The Telegraph’s Robbie Collin said “Arthur Christmas might be made of pixels rather than Plasticine, but it still has Aardman’s fingerprints all over it.” Brilliantly put.

Out now.

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