I think after last week’s disastrous movie choice of Labyrinth, the kids, with possibly the exception of Logan, were a bit wary of what I would choose next. “Hey, at least there was some entertainment value in making fun of it,” I defended.
When I announced that I had chosen The Neverending Story, another 80s classic, there was some skepticism from a couple in the crowd.
“Is it going to be as good as Labyrinth?” Cody said in a sarcastic tone.
“I promise, you’ll like this one,” I said. “No kid of mine CAN’T like this movie!” Which is true. I have tried hard to instill in my kids a sense of wonder, imagination, creativity, and an ability to believe that absolutely anything might be possible within the realm of fantasy. One of my kids is just too practical to have picked up this somewhat innate way of thinking, but the rest have a serious appreciation for the creative.
The opening credits, as those of us who know and love this movie remember, began with the decidedly old-fashioned 80s song of the same name. Groans filled the room. “Does this have SINGING in it, Mom?” asked Logan, who, despite enjoying Labyrinth, did not enjoy the ridiculous music. “No, this is the only music,” I promised.
I could tell right away Cody and Logan were fascinated by the story, if only because the protagonist was a boy around their age. As the movie went on, they were more and more absorbed, and I was enjoying watching their excitement over the story line even more than the actual movie, thinking of my first viewing around their age and how much the concept tickled my imagination. The girls had seen the movie before, but years ago, so Rachel was remembering it as it went on, while Andie had absolutely no recollection of it and didn’t seem too excited by it in any case, as she spent most of the time on her phone. Teenagers.
When we came to the part where Atreyu and Falcor are flying through Fantasia, all the kids started laughing. “Wow, great special effects, Mom!” Cody said. “It looks SO real!”
“You kids are spoiled by the amazing special effects we have these days,” I said grumpily, sounding scarily like my crotchety great-grandma. “This was just fine back when I was a kid.”
Despite the proclaimed horrific special effects, the boys in particular absolutely loved the movie, as I knew they would. Rachel liked it well enough, though she remembers loving it when she was much younger, and Andie thought it was “fine.”
Movies like this really separate the practically-minded from the fancifully-minded, don’t they? The practical just can’t enjoy this type of movie very much because it couldn’t really happen, while the fanciful are awed and inspired by the depth of creativity and imagination behind such a story, no matter their age.
How amazing would a well-done modern remake of this movie be?