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Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium
DVD disk
03.05.2008 By: Sturdy
Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium order
Director:
Zach Helm

Actors:
Dustin Hoffman
Natalie Portman
Zach Mills

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The owner of a magical toy store realizes his time has come and decides to leave the store to his store manager. With the help of a young boy and an uptight accountant, the manager must find a way to recapture the magic and keep the store open.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Magorium seemed to have taken a lot of flack during its theatrical run. After watching it on DVD, I can see why so many people had problems with it. Despite a neat idea of a living toy store, the film had a lot of issues and ended up feeling like it was thrown together at the last second.

As much as it pains me to say, the biggest problem was Dustin Hoffman. You wouldnít expect one of the best actors of all time to give such a bland performance with a character, but he managed. The character seemed to have been written as very quirky and zany, but Hoffman played it with such unoriginality that he just seemed slightly odd. The other actors played their parts fine, but Magorium was the only one that should have been interesting.

The set was another problem. Instead of feeling grand and magical, the toy store felt small and cramped. I felt claustrophobic while watching the film because the camera hovered so close to the actors at all times. I also could have done without the subplot of the boy and his hats. I realize they were trying to add a touching, heartfelt story, but since they didnít fully explore it, the story didnít work. The kidís story seemed awkward and unfinished at the end.

The film has its problems, but was ok on a cutesy level. Obviously, its target audience probably canít read, so with the bright and colorful visuals, Iím sure most little kids will enjoy it. Also, it has to be said that it does star the insanely beautiful Natalie Portman, so if you find yourself forced to watch it, you at least have that.
THE EXTRAS
Strangely Weird and Weirdly Strange (7:02): This is broken up into five chapters, which is strange since itís only seven minutes long. Needless to say, itís very quick and barely touches on the making of the film. It stays superficial for the most part and keeps it simple.

An Eccentric Boss and an Awkward Apprentice (6:44): There should be a rule that if your featurette is less than ten minutes, you canít have any movie scenes in it. This is just a brief discussion on the two main characters with too many cut scenes.

To Meet Eric Applebaum, Start by Saying Hi (7:04): Again, too many movie scenes for such a short featurette. This one focuses on the kid in the movie and features interviews with him and other cast and crew members. Yet again, this one is geared towards the younger audience.

The Magic Toy Store (8:04): They make it sound huge, but I still say that it felt really tiny to me. The cast and crew go on about how grand it is, but I donít see it. This focuses on the set and how it affects the film.

Fun on the Set (2:01): Not really a gag reel, but more of a collection of behind the scenes goofs. It looks like they had a fun time making the film and Jason Bateman is always funny.

There are also some Previews
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
If you have little kids, this is a safe bet. Itís very safe and completely void of any suggestive material or inappropriate language. For all others, I donít think youíll get much out of it.
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