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Dark Crystal (SE)
DVD disk
08.21.2007 By: Sturdy
Dark Crystal (SE) order
Director:
Jim Henson

Actors:
Jim Henson
Frank Oz

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The last two surviving Gelflings must team up to find the missing shroud of the dark crystal. Together, they can overcome the forces of evil and restore order to their planet.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
There are movies that everyone remembers loving while growing up and therefore that leads them to have fonder feelings for them as an adult. Unfortunately, I never saw DARK CRYSTAL when I was a kid and therefore I had to watch this for the first time as an adult in 2007. Those two things alone created quite a challenge to enjoying this film. If you remember liking DARK CRYSTAL when you were a kid, I can probably say with some degree of certainty that you wonít like it as an adult.

Saying anything negative about this film seems almost sacrilege given the amazing puppet creations by the brilliant Jim Henson. However, looking at it solely as a film, it feels very unoriginal and worn out. Virtually all of the filmís elements were taken from earlier films, most notably STAR WARS. Also, a lot of the filmís action sequences were hard to sit through due to the massive amounts of cheese. Again, thatís due to its target audience and the time it was made.

The film itself was pretty bad, but that shouldnít distract too much from the amazing character creations by Jim Henson. Granted, his creatures were a little scary looking, but they were still impressive. Iím still not sure what Jim Henson had against nostrils, but his characters were very detailed and creative. It was neat to see a movie dedicated to the creative mind of Jim Henson and his world is still pretty cool after all these years.

DARK CRYSTAL is a bad, outdated film with amazing puppet creations. Iíd like to tell you itís more than that, but I canít. I might have been a little more open to it had I seen it when I was younger, but Iím glad I didnít because some of those puppets would have freaked me out and given me nightmares.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Brian Froud: Itís been a while since heís seen the film, but he does a good job of keeping the track rolling. He talks nonstop about the film and offers several little factoid nuggets. Unfortunately, I found him to be a little dull and the track would have been better if they had someone with him.

The World of Dark Crystal (57:23): I highly recommend this making-of documentary to everyone that loved DARK CRYSTAL growing up. This is an extensive documentary and the man himself (Jim Henson) plays an integral part in it. There are a lot of behind the scenes looks at the puppets and the sets that were pretty neat.

Light on the Path of Creation (20:24): This is a general discussion of the storyline with some of the principle players. It was moderately interesting, but the best part was watching the screen tests for some of the puppets. The rest was stuff weíve heard before.

Shard of Illusion (16:18): This has way too many movie clips for such a short featurette. This would have worked better if combined with the previous featurette and with the clips edited out. It seems like they only briefly talk about some of the illusions found in the film.

Extra Scenes (24:26): These arenít very good scenes, but theyíre interesting nonetheless. Itís really cool to watch this antique footage first hand and Iíd bet true fans of the film will get a kick out of it.

There are also some Previews and some Character Illustrations.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
If you have a fond memory of DARK CRYSTAL, then this can be chalked up to a nostalgia buy for your DVD collection. If youíve never seen it, then Iíd let this one rest in peace in the 80ís.
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