Talk about a critical and commercial bomb! Strange Magic was a movie that I thought I would enjoy as it was developed by Lucasfilm based on a story by George Lucas. It had a very confusing marketing push before the movie was released and it made it seem like it was your standard fun, happy-go-lucky kids’ animated adventure, but that is not the case at all.
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You can download or stream the film from a digital platform. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and make your choice. Check out also our reviews of Lucasfilm classics – Star Wars or Raiders of the Lost Ark.
The Movie Review
One thing that is pretty interesting about Strange Magic is that the story is based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Shakespeare. I thought making a kid’s movie based on that classic story could be interesting. However, what we have is a real mess of a movie that makes very little sense and just seems concerned with going from one song to the next with no real regard for the plot in between.
This is more of a romance story than a comedy and I think that is part of the reason people were not keen on it, it was marketed as a comedy! The “plot” of the movie sees fairy princess Marianne losing faith and interest in love after she sees her fiancé kissing another girl!
She decides to give up on love and get away from it all. This is just one part of the story; you see the fairies represent the light part of the woods and the dark side is represented by the evil Bog King who also hates love and wants to get rid of all the flowers that the fairies use to make love potions so that no one can ever fall in love again.
Marianne’s fiancé, Roland wants to win her back and he starts out on a quest to get a love potion to do so, but things do not go as planned. Look, the story in Strange Magic is not good and I mean not good at all. It is hard to follow, boring and you care very little about the characters.
It would be one thing if the songs in the movie were great and catchy, but most of the songs are average at best! For a movie that relies so heavily on its music, you would think the music would be better! The voice cast is decent enough with people like Alan Cumming, Evan Rachel Wood, Alfred Molina, and Maya Rudolph to name a few.
The one thing that I will say is good about the movie is the way that it looks. Lucasfilm and the folks at ILM make some of the best-looking movies and even now, many years later, Strange Magic is a great-looking movie. I think the different parts of the forest, both the light and the dark are where the animators really show their skills!
To be honest with you, Strange Magic is a movie that I cannot recommend at all. Little kids will be bored to tears, older kids will not be into the whole love story and the adults forced to watch with them will not get into it either. While the marketing was bad, it is pretty easy to see why this movie was a massive box office bomb. No matter if it is streaming or an animated movie from your physical collection, there are a million other movies you are better off watching than this!
- The movie does look good
- The animation is very well done
- I love the whole design of the Dark Forest
- There are some talented voice actors in this movie
- The story is one of the worst I have experienced in an animated movie!
- Apart from looking good, everything else is pretty much bad!