What a richly eclectic cinematic experience! You'll get the fun and invention of "Willy Wonka" or "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang," the flight and fantasy to new and mysterious lands of "Peter Pan," and the comedic martial arts of Jackie Chan. And as if that weren't enough, Disney's also frosted this cake with glossy twinkling computer transitions. Instead of boring travel sequences (such that a lesser film may have used), "80 Days" transports our three heroes (and indeed, us) from one exotic country to the next via shimmering computer-animated "It's a Small World" paintings that add that wonderful feel of magic. These CGI accents are merely momentary, but they aptly complement a well shot, well-directed, extremely well-paced and simply fun production.
Though, two of the three leads may be unfamiliar to American audiences, a potpourri of cameos abound. With a Chinese, British, and Belgian actor comprising the major roles of a production that travels to Britain, France, Turkey, India, China, and the United States, you're in for a international, cultural experience. Just a tad sticky out of the gates, the film picks up steam fast and never loses its momentum. Strong performances by the leads with wonderfully bumbling cartoony support from the many secondary characters (especially Ewen Bremmer as Inspector Fix).
Wholesome for the most part, this rich robust family film (with the flair of yesteryear) clips along fast: "40 Days" would have been a more appropriate approximation. It'll plant a smile on your face that will last for the duration.
(Interestingly enough the screenplay is written by three Davids.)