Movie Review: Strange Magic

Producer: Sarah McArthur, Mark S. Miller, Kevin Munroe
Cast: Alan Cumming, Evan Rachel Wood, Kristin Chenoweth, Maya Rudolph, and Alfred Molina
Director:  Gary Rydstrom
Writer: George Lucas

Plot: A loose adaption of Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.

I really should have a subtitle on these reviews that would say: “I watch these movies so you don’t have to.”  So down to the nitty gritty, this was written by George Lucas.  Yes the man who brought you Star Wars brought this horror to the screen.  And even if everyone has an off day the part that really stings is the fact that this isn’t just dumbing down Shakespeare as in Gnomeo and Juliet, a truly horrible rendition of Romeo and Juliet, no this is worse.  This goes way beyond that it takes this wonderful comedy written by Shakespeare and turns it into a bad MTV video.

I have to be frank here I hate, absolutely hate, when people decide to take Shakespeare’s plays and grind them into pablum pantomime just to make them appeal to the six to ten set.  Do they really think that later on they will love those plays when represented again in the way they were meant to be shown?  Wouldn’t it be better to educate them up to where they can enjoy the intricacies of Shakespeare’s dialogs rather than dumb down those wonderful words?  (One group thinks that the opposite is true as the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is rewriting the Bard’s play into English, yes I know that Shakespeare wrote in English read this:  Too Dumb for Shakespeare)

So what have we instead of Midsummer Night’s Dream?  Well we have a fairyland that is separated by a row of primroses on one side is a dark boggy land inhabited by dark boggy creatures.  On the other side is a bright cheerful place full of flowers and pretty fairies that sing saccharin pop songs off key.  And of course the princess of the fairies falls in love with the king of the bog creatures.  Which then allows them to beat us over the head with the “moral of the story” about how different isn’t bad and we have to be more accepting.  What fools these mortals take us for.

Run do not walk from this movie.  Don’t let your kids watch it.  Even if your suffering from insomnia don’t watch this movie.

I give this movie five black holes.


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