Clara is a timid teen girl who is grieving her mother’s death while everyone around her moves on.
It’s Christmas time in her Victorian-era world, but she doesn’t want to celebrate. She’d prefer to hide in the attic, where she and her brother Fritz conduct science and mechanics experiments – two of Clara’s specialties – and forget about life.
“The real world just doesn’t make sense to me anymore,” she tells a friend.
But Clara’s mother didn’t want her daughter to mope. That’s why she left Clara a unique Christmas gift – a mysterious egg-shaped silver device – that supposedly includes life’s answers. At least, that’s what the note from her mom promises.
“Everything you need is inside,” the note reads.
Yet for some reason, her mom didn’t give her the key to open it.
So, Clara takes the silver egg to a formal ball in a big mansion, hoping that her mechanically minded godfather, Drosselmeyer, can help. He does provide a few clues – and so much more, too. Clara is led down a series of long halls and into another world, where she briefly spots the key before it is snatched away by a mouse. She then bumps into a soldier named Phillip, who reveals that her mother is the queen and that this world is comprised of four realms: the Land of Snowflakes, Land of Flowers, Land of Sweets and the evil Fourth Realm.
Tragically, the mouse has escaped with her key to the Fourth Realm, and she must find it.
Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (PG) opens this weekend, giving us the most ambitious live-action movie yet based on the classic story. It's inspired by E.T.A. Hoffmann’s 1816 book The Nutcracker and the Mouse King and stars Mackenzie Foy (Interstellar) as Clara; Morgan Freeman (Million Dollar Baby) as Drosselmeyer and Helen Mirren (The Queen) as Mother Ginger.
Here are four things parents should know:
Photo Courtesy: Disney