In a similar vein to "About Schmidt", the story begins with the last day at work before a well earned retirement. However, this being a film for children, instead of a boring insurance office worker, we are treated to a detective, who even arrests a criminal on his last ever journey to his place of work. The retirement celebration itself is not as cynical as in "About Schmidt", but it is also amusing.
In both films, the retiree does not really know what to do with his new situation in life. The retired detective Holms gets an unexpected visit from his two young grandchildren, and soon they descend into the fairytale kingdom, in a similar fashion to Mr.Majer's sudden visit to the fairytale world in "Arabela". This film is for younger children than that classical Czech TV series, however, and the scenes in the fairytale kingdom are kept much simpler than the complexities of Arabela's world. In both tales, the characters from different fairy stories meet each other and interact, sometimes in surprising ways. This children's film is again in this respect kept simple, at least simple enough for the younger viewers to appreciate, and the story continues to develop during the whole film, not running out of ideas, but being as ingenious as "Arabela".
Unfortunately, morals are kept on the surface in a condescending way, reminiscent of children's films from communist East Germany, instead of allowing growing personalities to draw their own conclusions from the tale as in the traditions of the classical fairy stories.
The acting is passable without being good. The story, and the subtle changes in the relationship between the children and their grandfather, are not without merit and entertainment value. On the whole, though, the film does not quite match up to the standards we have come to expect from children's films.
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