First of all - I'm a fan of The Little Prince. I've read it ever since I was a very young kid, and now that I'm a middle aged adult, it still holds tons of surprises and things to thoroughly think about. It may as well be my favorite book ever.
So, when I saw there was going to be an adaptation of the book, I hoped for a somewhat true to the book story. Anything close to it would have been fine by me, really. I mean, the book just doesn't lend itself to a movie, IMHO. It's just too deep and complex, and too simple and sweet at the same time.
The book, to me, it's the sweetest and most delicate balance of what being a human being is all about. What moves us, as seen from the eyes of a wise, sweet, innocent child.
The movie, therefore, is an atrocity and an insult to Antoine De Saint-Exupery. Period. It's the grossest, vilest insult to The Little Prince I could ever imagine.
First - I should have known from the ads. The Little Prince is a little icon, far away from the main characters - The Aviator, The Fox, and... The Girl???? Where did the little girl come from? Apparently, the movie makers thought they just couldn't make a movie without adding extra characters. And then, I suppose, they thought making a movie about the original story would have been too difficult, so they just tossed it all away and wrote an original story about a little girl and her mom.
I wish I was kidding. I'm not. The Little Prince story is just an excuse to move along a primary story about something else. It's treated as an extra, as something superfluous, as something - I guess - they had to do because the movie was named "The Little Prince", If you went in, expecting to watch something related to the real story, you are going to be very, very disappointed.
Second - the story never goes into what makes The Little Prince so special. You get to see the Little Prince traveling through asteroids, talking to his rose, taming his fox. Is any of this explained or explored in detail? No. It is treated as a distraction to the main story. The filmmakers never even bother to explore the symbolism behind the story. It's merely treated as an excuse for telling an alternate story.
Third - and this is where the spoiler goes. The Little Prince is all about love, tenderness, anger, happiness and ultimately, sadness. It's a moving story, told in the sweetest way possible - through the eyes of a small child. What on EARTH were the filmmakers thinking when they threw in action scenes? WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?!?!?!? I won't spoil it all, but when I saw scenes straight out of a video game, with violence, planes zooming in and out, adventure, etc., I almost walked out of the theater. The only thing that made me stay there was my child.
Fourth - another spoiler. The aviator was a child with a wonderful imagination, who grew up to become a jaded person. The Little Prince helped him question his beliefs and rediscover a sense of wonder he had lost. In the movie, the aviator is a childish old man. Not "child-like", or full of wonder. The whole point of the book was how an adult can become responsible, knowledgeable, yet retain his sensibility and sense of wonder throughout. Nowhere is this to be seen - the aviator is just like a spoiled, irreverent, incoherent child. Which is even more absurd when you see the real Little Prince's sequences, and you realize how different both versions of the aviator are.
Fifth - another spoiler. If you ever want to see part of your childhood ruined and torn to pieces, go watch this movie. You'll see where The Little Prince ended up. And believe me, you'll want to shout your lungs out at the filmmakers for destroying your childhood image of what his little Majesty would end up like. It's a travesty. It's depressing. It's false. And it's absolutely, completely wrong.
This is the most misguided, insulting and infuriating book adaptation I've ever seen. It's as if Star Wars: Episode 7 was about a kid watching Star Wars: A New Hope 30 minutes at a time. It's just... wrong.
Shame on everyone involved in making this travesty. 2 stars, because the animation showing what The Little Prince was really about was actually very well done.
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