"The Polar Express," released in 2004, is not just a movie; it's a magical journey that rekindles the childlike wonder in all of us. At the heart of this enchanting tale is the Polar Express train, which is more than just a means of transport; it's a symbol of faith, imagination, and the magic of Christmas.
The steam locomotive of The Polar Express serves as the physical manifestation of the train's magical journey, transforming from an ordinary train into a grand vessel capable of traversing snow-covered terrain and reaching the North Pole. The train's interior is equally captivating, with cozy passenger cars, a dining car serving hot chocolate, and a conductor who exudes authority and charm.
"The Polar Express" tells the story of a young boy, who is about to lose his faith in Santa Claus. On Christmas Eve, he is awakened by a mysterious train called the Polar Express, which stops right outside his house. The conductor invites him to board the train to the North Pole. On the train, the boy meets other children, including the know-it-all boy, the lonely boy called Billy, and the girl who becomes the leader of the group. The journey is full of extraordinary adventures, including navigating through huge mountains, ice-covered tracks, and fields of candy.
The film is based on the 1985 children's book of the same name by Chris Van Allsburg. The book, like the film, focuses on the theme of faith and the magic of Christmas. The film, directed by Robert Zemeckis, expands on the book's narrative, adding new characters and adventures to enrich the story.
- The Polar Express was the first fully motion-captured animated film, using a new technology called performance capture to create the movements and expressions of the characters.
- The digital image of the locomotive at the front of the Polar Express is based on the real Pere Marquette 1225 steam locomotive. The creators chose this locomotive because of its number since 12/25 is the American notation for the date of Christmas Eve. The creators also recorded the whistle and other sounds of the locomotive.
- After the film's release, several tourist railways and museums began organizing sightseeing tours in the style of the film. Every year in November and December, special trains travel across the United States, where passengers hear the familiar story of Chris Van Allsburg and are given chocolates and cookies, just as in the film.