A Simple Wish

  • 1997
  • Movie
  • PG
  • Children's, Comedy, Fantasy

What is it that inspires filmmakers to grotesquerie in the name of comic fantasy movies about the inner lives of children? Not only is this the most unpleasant film about an unhappy child and her magical friend since BOGUS and DROP DEAD FRED, this painfully clumsy comedy features one of the creepiest supernatural benefactors imaginable: With his unnaturally...read more

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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What is it that inspires filmmakers to grotesquerie in the name of comic fantasy movies about the inner lives of children? Not only is this the most unpleasant film about an unhappy child and her magical friend since BOGUS and DROP DEAD FRED, this painfully clumsy comedy features one of the creepiest supernatural benefactors imaginable: With his unnaturally red hair and feyly nervous mannerisms, Martin Short's fairy godmother Murray (affirmative action, we guess) looks like a child molester. And since Murray is visible to grown-ups, you can't help but wonder why none of them calls the police when he starts tagging around after little Annabelle (Mara Wilson). Annabelle wants Murray to help her struggling-actor dad get the lead in an Andrew Lloyd Webber-ish Broadway spectacle called Two Cities so the family won't have to move to the dreaded Midwest. Bad enough that the well-meaning but inept spell-caster, whose wand-waving skills leave a great deal to be desired, bungles the job repeatedly. But Wicked Witch of the East Side Claudia (Kathleen Turner), a fallen fairy godmother, also needs Murray's wand to jump-start her diabolical campaign to become the Queen of Darkness. Their less-than-epic battle of good and evil is rendered via a series of cheap-looking special effects, the kind you'd expect to find in a direct-to-video kiddie movie. The lone exception: Murray accidentally turns a cab horse into a mouse that whinnies and rears and is absolutely adorable.

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  • Released: 1997
  • Rating: PG
  • Review: What is it that inspires filmmakers to grotesquerie in the name of comic fantasy movies about the inner lives of children? Not only is this the most unpleasant film about an unhappy child and her magical friend since BOGUS and DROP DEAD FRED, this painfull… (more)

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