Monday, January 4, 2010

The Great Land of Small

(Vojta Jasny, 1987)
There's something deeply dislikeable about this movie; it's over-projected, desperate, with loud, glazed performances. With several blatant overtures toward The Wizard of Oz, this distinguishes itself by having the least colorful entourage imaginable - the sullen and grating little Fritz, the twinkling-hobo of your nightmares Mimmick, and a big guy in a beard with a repulsive human dog. The kids look like they've been drugged and threatened, but are fun to watch in a circusy way; and I admit that the Oz-like Land of Small itself is pretty trippy, especially when a series of wire-work butterfly dances give way to an icky, globular beast named Slime-O that is a direct ancestor of Ed Hunt's Brain. But Fritz's quest to retrieve his gold dust from the dusted-out hunter is a pretty thin motivator, and the intensely familiar family scenes subtract additional interest.

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