The Secret of the Magic Gourd follows the wondrous adventures of a young schoolboy named Wang Bao. When Wang Bao discovers a magical gourd that can instantly grant his every wish, the awkward child suddenly becomes a hero amongst his curious classmates. When the gourd proves more of a burden than a blessing and the boy decides to get rid of it, he quickly discovers that's easier said than done. Written by
AUSTIN LOVES JAPAN AND BAMBI
Despite being a film aimed at small kids, this film has a great animated lead and several moments of real movie magic
(This review is based upon seeing the film in Chinese without benefit of English subtitles)
A young boy who dreams too much is often the laughing stock of his class. One day while fishing he reels in a magic gourd that talks and is granted what ever he wants.
A good Disney film from China, that I'm betting won't be seen in the US which is a shame. Though the story is aimed for young kids, the film still scores high points because the acting of the kid and the character animation of the gourd and the frog are excellent. The animated characters are real characters and I for one completely bought that gourd was wandering around. It helps that the actor doing the voice seems to be playing it straight, which is great. To be honest the animation here is some of the best character animation that Disney has released. I'd love to see this in English since I think this could really work for English speaking audiences. I saw this in Chinese sans English subtitles and it worked for me.(Apparently there is a subtitled version out there but I haven't found it yet) Here's a film that with a good translation or rewriting could be nice hit on DVD (I'm trying to think what writer could do the film justice). There is a genuine sense of wonder and magic in many sequences in ways that Disney US hasn't managed to manufacture in quite sometime. Sue me I loved the room full of toys, the gourd on a bird, and the out takes. To be certain the film is a bit too innocent for some audiences, and the denouncement could be seen at the start, but if you take this film for what it is I think you'll have a good time. I really liked this a great deal.
7 out of 10
(Addendum:This comes out in the US on DVD in January 2009)
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