HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Synchronic
Capote Tapes, The
Night, The
Show Goes On, The
Furnace, The
Tyrel
Iceman
Blue Sky
Tokyo Dragon Chef
Pittsburgh
12 Hour Shift
Intergalactic Adventures of Max Cloud, The
Spoilers, The
Killer Therapy
Man Upstairs, The
Bloodhound, The
New Mutants, The
Tesla
Flame of New Orleans, The
Ham on Rye
Imperial Blue
Tenet
August 32nd on Earth
Don is Dead, The
Seven Sinners
Body of Water
Away
Soul
About Endlessness
Let It Snow
Ava
Deliver Us from Evil
Shark Attack 3: Megalodon
Midnight Sky, The
Lego Star Wars Holiday Special, The
Mon Oncle Antoine
Blast of Silence
Blackout, The
Stars in Your Eyes
Alone
   
 
Newest Articles
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
Newley Minted: The Strange World of Gurney Slade on Blu-ray
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
Living Room Theatre: Play for Today Volume 1 on Blu-ray
Didn't He Do Well: The Bruce Forsyth Show on DVD
Blood Wedding: The Bride with White Hair on Blu-ray
The Inhuman Element: The Ladykillers on 4K UHD
As You Like It, Baby: Breathless on Blu-ray
Stargazing: Light Entertainment Rarities on DVD
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
   
 
  Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium you have to believe it to see it
Year: 2007
Director: Zach Helm
Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Natalie Portman, Jason Bateman, Zach Mills
Genre: Comedy, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 2 votes)
Review: Mr. Magorium (Dustin Hoffman) is the 243 year-old proprietor of the strangest, most wonderful toy store in the world. His Wonder Emporium is a fantastical toy haven where everything, including the store itself, comes to life. Amidst this cavalcade of marvels, Mr. Magorium suddenly announces he will hand over the reigns of his magical store to his reluctant young manager, Molly Mahoney (Natalie Portman). As a youngster Molly was a gifted and acclaimed concert pianist. Now in her twenties she feels lost, struggling to compose the great symphony she was once expected to write, her self-confidence withering away. As a sceptical accountant named Henry (Jason Bateman) arrives to audit the store, the emporium throws a temper tantrum, losing its all its colour and sparkle, while the playful toys turn quiet and grey. Only Molly and Henry can revive the emporium, with the aid of a lonely, but resourceful little boy (Zach Mills).

A charming confection, right from its brightly coloured opening credits, Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium arrives bursting at the seams with off-kilter ideas and could go on to become a children’s classic. Debut director Zach Helm (who wrote the similarly oddball, Stranger than Fiction (2006)) doesn’t always imbue the narrative with enough oomph, but his screenplay tackles surprisingly weighty themes including death, wasted lives, self-belief, and the twenty-something malaise. What at first seems to be the slightest of plots, proves to be a clever and original series of set-pieces adopting the structure of a child’s pop-up storybook. Refreshingly free of crassness and cynicism, it is a brave family film that actually believes in hope and innocence and features no villains whatsoever. It reminds one of Hayao Miyazaki’s masterly Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989), which tells a similar tale of a young woman’s rite of passage, discovering magic within herself. Children drawn to conflict/action-based movies might grow impatient and reach for their Transformers DVDs, but grown-ups and youngsters who persevere will find much to savour. Among its delights: a cameo from Kermit the Frog, a sock monkey that wants to be hugged, wild zebras and toy dinosaurs running amok, and Natalie Portman conducting a symphony of magic (and briefly transforming into a stop-motion puppet).

The movie boasts sprightly performances from Dustin Hoffman, mimicking comic actor Ed Wynn, whom you may remember from Mary Poppins (1964), and the ever-adorable Natalie Portman, channelling a young Julie Andrews. Newcomer Zach Mills shows promise, although the film denies us a satisfactory pay-off to his long search for acceptance. Jason Bateman does very well with a stock kids’ movie character: the disbeliever. Yet refreshingly, Henry’s sceptical, conservative demeanour never reduce him to a bad guy. Bateman displays some agreeably Monty Pythonesque lunacy in a scene where he pretends to be a medieval peasant.

But this is Hoffman and Portman’s show, two actors who can do so much with a gesture or a glance, and they spark brilliantly off each other. There is a clear affection evident in their characters’ easygoing banter. Molly leading Magorium through his perfect, final day on this earth and the moment the old man bids farewell to his beloved toy store, are incredibly emotional scenes liable to leave you teary-eyed. Though uncertain direction leaves it lagging in pep, the movie overflows with fun, wonder and heart. An effects whizzed-up tribute to the children’s films of yesteryear, Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium is a wonderful place to be.
Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 2948 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
Enoch Sneed
  Geraint Morgan
Paul Smith
  Lee Fiveash
   

 

Last Updated: