A story about how joy and happiness can be the most powerful weapon ever. A young unicorn is ordered to be taken from his home by the gods. They are envious of little Unico's power to bring... See full summary »
A canine angel, Charlie, sneaks back to earth from heaven but ends up befriending an orphan girl who can speak to animals. In the process, Charlie learns that friendship is the most heavenly gift of all.
From a riddle-speaking butterfly, a unicorn learns that she is supposedly the last of her kind, all the others having been herded away by the Red Bull. The unicorn sets out to discover the truth behind the butterfly's words. She is eventually joined on her quest by Schmendrick, a second-rate magician, and Molly Grue, a now middle-aged woman who dreamed all her life of seeing a unicorn. Their journey leads them far from home, all the way to the castle of King Haggard...Written by
Alongside The Secret of Nimh (1982), Watership Down (1978), and The Plague Dogs (1983) this is easily considered one of the darkest and most violent animated films of the late 20th century these films were rated G and PG in the cases of Watership Down (1978) and The Plague Dogs (1983) additionally all these four animated films were released before the existence of the PG-13 rating. See more »
The horn that Mommy Fortuna created for the Unicorn glows and was located in front of the Unicorn's authentic horn. However, when when the Unicorn says "hurry!" to Schmendrick as he is unlocking her cage, we see that her authentic horn, not Mommy Fortuna's horn, is the one that's glowing. See more »
I dislike the feel of this woods. Creatures that live in a unicorn's forest learn a little magic of their own in time. Mainly concerned with disappearing.
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There are two different versions of the film. One is found the VHS/DVD edition (which is found on both the initial 2004 DVD release and the 2007 25th Anniversary DVD release), the other is the theatrical version which is the same as the 1983 HBO version. There are numerous differences between the two:
In the theatrical/HBO version, after Prince Lir fights the dragon, the film cuts to the scene where King Haggard confronts Amalthea on the tower and tells her he knows she is a unicorn. The film then cuts back to when Prince Lir tries to give Amalthea the dragon hide. In the VHS/DVD version, after Lir fights the dragon the film cuts back to Lir trying to give Amalthea the dragon hide. The Amalthea/King Haggard tower scene occurs much later.
The theatrical/HBO version omits the song "Now That I'm a Woman," although the song does appear in reprise form in "That's All I've Got To Say".
In the theatrical/HBO version, the dragon has a much louder roar than in the VHS/DVD version.
The VHS/DVD version omits several words. The first word missing is the word "Damn", which is heard during Molly Grue's exclamation to the Unicorn upon meeting her. In the theatrical version, she says, "Damn you! Where have you been?", but in the VHS/DVD version, she says, "Where have you been?" The word "damn" is also missing from the scene where Prince Lir is struggling to compose a poem to Amalthea in a stairwell. Additionally, the word " hell" is absent from the scene where Mommy Fortuna pulls the caravan over to look at the Unicorn and then calls Ruhk. In the theatrical version he replies with "Now just what in hell was that stop for?" The VHS/DVD version has "Now just what was that stop for?"
In the VHS/DVD version, the Unicorn's attempts to see if the Butterfly can identify her are more drawn out. For instance, the Unicorn asks, "Do you know who I am?" and the butterfly blithely replies, "Excellent! Well, you're a fishmonger!" He also surfs on a leaf singing, "Take the A-Train".
In the VHS/DVD version, Ruhk goes into deeper description of the Satyr and the Midgard Serpent. He also yells at Schmendrick to stay away from the Unicorn's cage.
In the VHS/DVD version, Mommy Fortuna has an extra line, explaining her need to prove to herself a competent witch: "I quit show-business first! Do you think I don't know what the true witchery is, just because I do what I do? There's not a witch in the world hasn't laughed at Mommy Fortuna and her homemade horrors! But there's not one of them who would have dared..."
In the VHS/DVD version, Schmendrick cast an additional spell in which he burns his hands after trying to turn the bars "into old cheese which I crumble in my hands!" This spell is only hinted at in the original version, in Amalthea's nightmare.
In the VHS/DVD version, Schmendrick's scene with the amorous female tree is extended, with the tree spouting, "Always! Always! Faithfulness beyond any man's deserving! I will keep the color of your eyes when no other in the world remembers your name! There is no immortality, but a tree's love!"
In the VHS/DVD version, King Haggard's line is extended to "I can see no reason at all to replace him with some vagrant, nameless, clownish..." Originally, the line had ended at "replace him."
In the VHS/DVD version, a scene is added with Schmendrick is in the clock room, pondering the riddle, cracking a joke, "I wonder what time it is?" He hides from Lir and Amalthea walking in, when Lir comments, "Well, of course you're of noble birth. Anybody can see that. I mean, you really can't be, heh, that ridiculous magician's niece. It's out of the question."
In the VHS/DVD version, there are more shots of Haggard spying on Amalthea and Lir from a higher tower location.
In the VHS/DVD version, the scene with the Skull is extended as well. It also takes more time to describe how to pass through the clock, with Schmendrick cracking, "Walk through a clock? What do I look like, a magician?" The Skull also gets drunk, slurring, "You're more of a magician than I took you for!"
Whether it's a combination of the soundtrack by America, or the super-dramatic vocal talents of the actors, this is one movie that sticks with you for... oh, about 20 years. I can recall lines (and sometimes cry) even when I haven't seen the movie in ages. I was lucky enough to get the (slightly poor) DVD release this week and watched it three times in a night.
Any line that Molly Grue says makes the hairs on my neck stand up. Not being a big anime or fantasy film buff, I still list this as a top child-hood movie to watch over and over (and over again much to the chagrin of my husband). Mia Farrow sounds like an angel. Alan Arkin is just lovable. Jeff Bridges "sounds" handsome (which is about all his character has to be). I'm almost afraid to see the new live version coming out in 2006. I don't want to lose the fantasy of this film.
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