Three children accidentally get turned into fish after drinking a potion made by an eccentric scientist. The kids end up in the sea, with one problem. They must find and drink the antidote within 48 hours, or forever remain as fish.
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Flemming Quist Møller
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Siblings; Fly & Stella together with their child genius cousin Chuck Charles, encounter reclusive biologist/chemist Proffesor MacKrill/Mac Krell while out on the docks fishing only to become cut off by the tide coming in separating them from the shoreline. Seeking refuge, they stumble across his secluded island hideaway laboratory, to discover MacKrill/Mac Krell has found away to change humans into sea-life and back again. Stella mistaking this fish potion for lemonade drinks some and is turned into a starfish, her older brother none the wiser chucks her out into the ocean, only to learn from the video cameras the awful truth. Out searching for her in a boat guilty Fry knowing how futile this action is drinks the potion and dives in after her (changing into Californian Linefish in the process) leaving the Professor and Chuck on-board as an storm brews overhead. Unable to stand the batter waves, their craft sinks along with the antidote and Chuck has to drink the liquid to prevent ... Written by
Animator Mark Flood credits this film with helping him achieve some of the success that he has had in his animation career - when looking up this film one day, he read that it had won a prize at the Chicago International Children's Film Festival, prompting him to take a look, and several months later, his film The Freak Next Door (2012) was accepted and screened at the festival after he submitted it upon reading about it. See more »
When Fly and Chuck have an argument Fly's flippers change from brown to gray. See more »
[skateboarding down the hall]
Yee-haw! Going fishing!
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Good enough for children although lacking the depth or humour that adults used to Pixar or Ghibli will want
When Fly and his sister Sasha are left in the care of their Aunt Anna and their cousin Chuck, they slip away and go fishing. When they get cut off by the tide they seek refuge in a cave and find themselves in the lab of the eccentric Professor MacKrill. He has developed a potion that will turn him into a fish but before he can demonstrate it for them, young Stella has mistaken it for lemonade and drunk some of it and has been lost in the sea. When Fry realises they will never find her from a boat he drinks the potion and dives in leaving the Professor and Chuck on the boat. When the boat sinks in a storm, Chuck has to drink the potion to prevent himself drowning. The three find themselves in the sea with 48 hours to find the antidote before they remain fish forever. However on the seabed the antidote has fallen into the fins of the ruthless Joe.
Although this film is most famous in the UK for blessing our charts with the song that goes "I'm a little yellow fish in a big blue sea (won't somebody help me?)" this animation is pretty basic in some regards but is still going to be good enough to distract the young audience that it is aimed that. The plot is a basic adventure and it produces some childish drama, humour and music. Adults will not be taken in by these to any great degree because it really isn't any near the level of the better animation that exists such as Pixar or Studio Ghibli but it is enough for kids. There are some nice touches and emotional moments but the material isn't strong enough to make them consistent and the humour is also pretty basic and again not the sharp references that some parents will be used to from Pixar. The songs are roundly poor and, as an adult, I found myself wanting to fast forward them after the first few bars of each one.
The animation is pretty good though and for every scene that looks a bit childish and basic there are two that include touches of imagination. It will please kids on this level as well but has enough about it to offer them scares as well which I think always help engage a child rather than force them away from a story. The voicework in the English version is pretty disappointing. It isn't bad by any means but it is entirely what you expect it to be bland and obvious. Pace, Paul and Westerson are just kids and do the job well enough. Where the film did disappoint was with the big names. Jones doesn't bring much humour to his role and adds little but his name in a small role, but I was more let down by Rickman. If anyone can do smarmy menace, it is him but he calls in his performance in this and it shows in his voice and his delivery.
Overall then a solid cartoon that has more than enough about it to appeal to children. Adults will be turned off by the rubbish songs, the lack of sharp humour and the basic plot (although the animation is still good for all). Anyway, this shouldn't matter as few adults will come to this film expecting much more than distracted children for 80 minutes which this film can pretty much deliver.
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