Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Pagemaster (1994) review


It's amazing how one of your favorite childhood movies can be so different with age.

PLOT:Young Richard Tyler (Macaulay Culkin) is a kid that's scared of nearly everything he sees or touches. One day when he's running to get some tools for his dad in the town, it starts to rain and Richard is forced to enter the library where he meets the ecstatic librarian, Mr. Dewey (Christopher Lloyd). After being somewhat introduced to books, Richard asks to use the phone to call his parents. On his way there, he slips and falls, knocking him out. Now Richard is trapped in a world ruled by the Pagemaster (Christopher Lloyd) where he must make it to the exit by facing and meeting the worlds and books of Adventure (Patrick Stewart), Fantasy (Whoopi Goldberg), and Horror (Frank Welker). It's a unique but simple plot that's executed very simple-mindedly.

ACTING/VOICES:Most of the acting in the live action scenes was overdone, especially Culkin's, but in the voice-acting section, every voice fit its persona accurately in a fun and loveable way.

SCORE:The score was made up of just regular adventure score and extremely cheesy inspirational songs about imagining and dreaming.

ANIMATION:Some say the animation is lazily done, but I say aside from the beginning scene, it's pretty well done. It reminds me of the nostalgic animation as used in "An American Tail".

OTHER CONTENT:This movie was mainly made for one reason, and that is to persuade children to read. The simple idea shows through cheesily, as nearly the whole movie's an inspirational nightmare as related to books. I'm one for literature, and I appreciated the book references too, but there is such a thing as overdoing it. The one thing besides the voice acting, animation, and references that kept this going was the dry yet sharp-witted humor used to refer to the books. I laughed a few times, guilty as charged. To think I would've given this an 8 out of 10 when I was about 5...

OVERALL,a movie that's not too shabby with a simple plot, overdone acting and fitting voicing, cheesy score, nostalgic animation, cheesy and inspirational feeling, great book references, and sharp-witted humor.

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