In yet another unnecessary remake of a perfectly serviceable film (1990, by Nicolas Roeg, starring Anjelica Huston), a young lad does battle with a coven of witches he has stumbled upon, even after being turned into a mouse.
It’s not a bad film, exactly. Robert Zemeckis is the director, Roald Dahl wrote the source children’s book, Guillermo del Toro shares script credits, the comically over-the-top cast includes Anne Hathaway, Octavia Spencer and Stanley Tucci, and Chris Rock voices the narrating mouse. The SFX are top-notch (natch — Zemeckis of course made Back to the Future) and the production values are flawless.
It’s just that with a lineup with this much firepower, you expect something more than “not bad.” Further, I’m not sure the filmmakers thought through their target audience; it’s too scary for little kids and too tedious for adults. (106 min)
Elsewhere on Metropolis:
- “The Hole” by Hiroko Oyamada: David Boyd translates Oyamada’s surreal novel of transformation and isolation
- America’s Tokyo: Revisiting the capital 75 years after the American Occupation began
- The Controversy of Japan’s ‘Baby Hatch’: Is it ethical to anonymously give away a child?