“Strange Magic,” a new animated film from Lucasfilm Ltd., is a madcap fairy tale musical inspired by “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Popular songs from the past six decades help tell the tale of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their hilarious misadventures sparked by the battle over a powerful potion. Lucasfilm Animation Singapore and Industrial Light & Magic bring to life the fanciful forest turned upside down with world-class animation and visual effects. Directed by Gary Rydstrom (“Toy Story Toons: Hawaiian Vacation,” “Lifted”) from a story by George Lucas.”
I try to go to movie previews with an open mind. I am not always successful. I walked into this movie having seen one trailer in the theater two weeks earlier and thinking, isn’t this a remake of the recent animated movie, Epic? Thankfully I could not have been more wrong.
I also did not know this was a musical movie. As I said previously, I try to go to a movie with little prior knowledge so that my experience that I relate to you is authentic as I am seeing and learning everything for th wforst time. It took me a few minutes to accustom myself to listening to my first animated musical. At that point I relaxed and enjoyed the show.
The first thing I noticed about the movie was the beautiful animation. Visually stunning, exactly what you would expect from George Lucas. He did not disappoint.
The voice cast includes: Alan Cumming, Evan Rachel Wood, Kristin Chenoweth, Maya Rudolph, Sam Palladio, Meredith Anne Bull, Alfred Molina, Elijah Kelley, Bob Einstein, Peter Stormare. My interview with these folks can be seen here!
Evan Rachel Woods Marianne character was your typical fairy Princess, engaged to a handsome “Prince like” fellow. Luckily she finds out before the marriage that he is no good. She goes on to become the anti-Princess and learns how to be fight and be on her own. Marriage will not be the path for her and she is fine with that future, rather than resigned. I like that attitude! Of course somehow we plan, and things do not go the way we would ever think they would go:
Meredith Anne Bull is Marianne’s sister, Dawn, and she is boy crazy! Watching her journey from her teenage crushes, to real love, and what happens in between (I cannot share the middle bit, that would be a major hysterical spoiler!) is heart felt. It is nice that she also has a best friend along for the journey,
Kristin Chenoweth was the sugar plum fairy, she is always wonderful!
I had no idea that it was Maya Rudolph voicing the Bog King’s mom, to me she was a typical Jewish mother hocking her son to get married. In the context of her son being an ugly bug and King of the Dark World, that was part of her hysterical character! I love her!
This is an unconventional love story. This is an animated musical where the story is told by music with some of the various pop hits from the last forty years. We all laughed and had a great time listening to the great music and enjoying the terrific sense of humor that also comes through in the story. This is the perfect kids movie with just the right amount of life lesson thrown in! My post with the interviews of the cast and George Lucas, the Executive Producer of the movie, are where I learned that it is all about finding true love, not infatuation.
STRANGE MAGIC opens in theatres everywhere on January 23rd!
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Disclosure: I attended the movie preview. All opinions are my own and 100% honest.
Here’s the Sugar Plum Fairy, Kristin Chenoweth!