The superstrong young heroine of Astrid Lindgren's children's novels is back yet again, much more at home in the medium of animation than in any of her previous live-action films.
Seafaring Pippi Longstocking (voice of Melissa Altro) is temporarily separated from her father, Captain Longstocking (voice of Gordon Pinsent), when a storm washes him overboard. Not unduly worried--as he points out, the captain is so fat that he'll have no trouble floating--Pippi follows his
instructions to go to their family home in the country, the Villa Villekulla, and await his return. With her monkey friend Mr. Nilsson (voice of Richard Binsley), Pippi makes the acquaintance of her new neighbors Tommy (voice of Noah Reid) and Annika (voice of Olivia Garrett), former city kids
bored with life in the country. With spirits as unsagging as her pigtails, Pippi raises the ire of local busybody Mrs. Prysselius (voice of Catherine O'Hara), who wants her put in a children's home. Mrs. Prysselius reports the situation to the bumbling local cops. She is overheard by jailed felons
Thunder-Karlsson (voice of Dave Thomas) and Bloom (voice of Wayne Robson), who are particularly interested in her report of the Villa Villekulla treasure chest filled with gold coins.
Pippi's high spirits get her in trouble both at school and at the home of her neighbors, where she disrupts a tea party attended by Mrs. Prysselius. Thunder-Karlsson and Bloom break out of jail and attempt to steal the gold, but Pippi wears them out by dancing them to exhaustion. Realizing they
can neither overcome nor outsmart this child, they decide to help Mrs. Prysselius have her put into a home. Captain Longstocking arrives home just in time to dissuade Mrs. Prysselius and to watch the would-be thieves returned to jail, after running afoul of traps Pippi left to protect the house
when she was gone. Rather than go back out to sea, Pippi decides to remain ashore with her new friends Tommy and Annika.
PIPPI LONGSTOCKING is a production of the Nelvana Animation studio, whose style is less ostentatiously busy than the Disney standard and therefore rather easier on the eye. The songs (mostly originals, but a few adapted from the original Swedish PIPPI LONGSTOCKING movies) are pleasantly tuneful,
and sung with panache by Melissa Altro, who provides the voice of Pippi. Dave Thomas also provides an amusing Boris Karloff impression as hulking bad guy Thunder-Karlsson (the character names are the chief remnant of the stories' Swedish origins). Pippi's unrestrained exuberance and what could be
interpreted as a "smart mouth" may not wholly endear her to some parents, but younger children will enjoy her fairly harmless antics.
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- Released: 1997
- Rating: G
- Review: The superstrong young heroine of Astrid Lindgren's children's novels is back yet again, much more at home in the medium of animation than in any of her previous live-action films. Seafaring Pippi Longstocking (voice of Melissa Altro) is temporarily separa… (more)