Saturday, August 25, 2007

Stardust (Movie Review)

If you loved The Princess Bride (1987), there's a 90% chance you'll at least "like" Stardust (2007).*

The two are alike in their charming campiness, their tongue-in-cheek humor, and their re-interpretations of fairy tale conventions. The primary difference, execution-wise, is something that's more of an alert for parents: Stardust is considerably more graphic than Princess Bride, and I actually felt bad for the five-year-old sitting behind me at the theater.

[Not to mention, I quickly grew tired of her kicking my seat, but never mind that.]

Still, I rather enjoyed Stardust and found it to be one of the more delightful films I've seen this summer — Harry Potter aside, of course. It chronicles the adventures of a young man who lives on the outskirts of remote British town that shares a "wall" with a magical world. He goes on a quest to retrieve a falling star for the girl of his dreams, only to find that "falling stars" in the magical world take on a human form.

But just as the charming young man hunts for the star to woo a narcissistic, materialistic female, the star (Clare Danes) is likewise hunted by a witch (Michelle Pfeifer) and three princes on a quest to inherit the throne of their magical kingdom.

I'm not doing the film justice; though I still have an obvious, possibly nostalgic preference for The Princess Bride, this is the first film I've seen in years that even comes close to creating the same sort of movie experience.

I'd recommend it to anyone who could use a good dose of clever escapism.

Emphasis on clever.


FINAL GRADE: B+

*I'm short on time, so I'll keep this briefer than I'd have liked.


7 comments:

Stacy said...

I saw a tiny excerpt of this film (Michelle P. becoming young) and can't wait to see this movie.I did not know it was out nor what it was titled, thanks for the heads up.
I love The Princess Bride too
"Anybody want a peanut?"

disgruntled world citizen said...

i just saw Blade Runner for the first time. I'm not sure I got it, that is I understood it. I think I need to watch it about six more times.

Anonymous said...

OK, maybe it is because I read Stardust before seeing the movie but I don't see the parallels between it and Princess Bride. But that is me. I love both movies.

I would argue with the B+ but there are some points in the movie that drag and the gore is a bit pointless in places. Still, I'll own it when it comes out.
~BPP

thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy said...

Stacy - No more rhyming now, I mean it!

thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy said...

DWC - I think most people (including myself) feel that way about Bladerunner.

thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy said...

BPP - It was the campy fantasy element that did it for me. A clever re-invention of fairy tale conventions. "Princess Bride" thrived on these things. Still, they're by no means identical; it's just that I enjoyed watching both for similar reasons.

And this would've been an A-, had the entrail scenes not thoroughly disgusted me.

Pamela said...

not for kids?