The last "Charlotte's Web" on film was the animated 1973
With one exception, the voice work is very sharp. Alongside human actors Fanning,
Now, about the spider.
The close-ups of the computer-animated Charlotte are also a problem: The animators have given her eyes as big and consciously adorable as those of the cutest space alien. (The book's Garth Williams illustrations never depicted Charlotte at close range.) It's too bad, because White's cherished character deserves to be treated with as much class and distinction as can be mustered.
Happily most of "Charlotte's Web" is better than that. Director
White considered Thoreau's "Walden" an indispensable book. "I keep it about me in much the same way one carries a handkerchief--for relief in moments of defluxion or despair," he wrote. Millions, of course, feel the same way about "Charlotte's Web." This story never was a story for children alone. But preteen moviegoers and their overseers, just now recovering from the emotional ravaging supplied by "Happy Feet," should find the film version a comfort.