Willow (1988)

Director: Ron Howard

Writer: Bob Dolman (Screenplay) George Lucas (Story)

Starring: Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley, Warwick Davis, Jean Marsh, Patricia Hayes, Billy Barty, Pat Roach


Plot: A reluctant dwarf must play a critical role in protecting a special baby from an evil queen.

Tagline – A world where heroes come in all sizes and adventure is the greatest magic of all

Runtime: 2 Hours 6 Minutes


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Fun Fantasy Adventure


Story: Willow starts as Queen Bavmorda (Marsh) whose evil rule has been hunting for a baby that will one day kill her and end her reign. When the baby is snuck out of her kingdom she ends up floating down the river the dwarf village where Willow (Davis) reluctantly takes her in, but only ends up needing to leave his village to delivery her to a rightful owner.

Willow must team up with lone warrior Madmartigan (Kilmer) to get the baby to safety, with half the kingdom seemingly after them, the true power of the magic inside is about to be released.


Thoughts on Willow


Characters – Willow is a dwarf farmer that reluctantly agrees to help a baby get to safety, he must go on an adventure unlike anything he has been on before, he will finally get to see if his years of training will unlock his sorcerer ability. Madmartigan claims to be the greatest swordsman in the land, but has been trapped escaping enemies while reluctantly joining Willow on the mission to save the baby. Sorsha is the daughter of the Queen, leading the party to capture the baby, which soon changes when she meets Madmartigan. Queen Bavmorda is the evil ruler of the land and knows the only way to stay in control is to make sure her prophecy doesn’t come true.

PerformancesWarwick Davis is the star of the movie, he must keep his innocence while showing strength through the film. Val Kilmer gets plenty of laughs showing that he could handle both the action and comedy through this film, this showed us just what sort of career we could have seen from him. Joanne Whalley does a good job with what she has but doesn’t get too much time to show u her skills, the same goes for Jean Marsh because we don’t get enough screen time for the evil queen.

StoryThe story is an unlikely hero needing to go on a quest to save the kingdom he lives in from the reign of terror it could fall into under the Queen and her armies. The story does put our hero needing to overcome his own fears, become the strong figure he has been trying to become. It does have moment of fairy tale behaviour but doesn’t reach the levels of the previous years film, ‘The Princess Bride’. This is one that can be enjoyed by all the fantasy fans out there.

Action/Adventure/Fantasy The action is battle sequences which are fun and play out for the characters to get their moments to redeem themselves. The adventure takes Willow on the unlikely adventure for the good of the kingdom while also using his desired magic abilities in the fantasy world.

SettingsThe settings take us to a land of wizard, witches and creatures that could be a threat. It is basic, but it works for the film.

Scene of the Movie –
Snow time.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Would have liked more of the Sorsha character.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun adventure movie, it sums up the 80’s style with how it unfolds. This is one to enjoy the ride.


Overall: Enjoyable throughout.




Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (2001)

logoDirector: Chris Columbus

Writer: Steve Kloves (Screenplay) J.K. Rowling (Novel)

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Richard Harris, Maggie Smith, Robbie Coltrane, Warwick Davis, Emma Watson, John Hurt, Rupert Grint, Tom Felton, Alan Rickman


Plot: Rescued from the outrageous neglect of his aunt and uncle, a young boy with a great destiny proves his worth while attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: It Begins


Story: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone starts by showing two professors Dumdledore (Harris) and McGonagall (Smith) along with Hagrid (Coltrane) placing our protagonist in the hands of his Aunt and Uncle. Harry (Radcliffe) has lived in this family where he has to live where he gets neglected by them and his nephew who bullies him. While Harry starts receiving letters from Hogwarts his Uncle keeps disposing of them. While trying to hide from all the letters Harry gets a visitor on his 11th birthday from Hagrid telling him about his parents and taking him to Hogwarts.

Hagrid takes him to prepare for his trip to Hogwarts while Harry tries to uncover more about his parents. Harry learns that he has become a huge name in the wizard world before heading off to Hogwarts. Harry meets Ron Weasley (Grint) and Hermione (Watson) on route and his adventure to uncover his past is underway.  While Harry goes through the usual school times dealing with bullies but only on a basic level, he also has to deal with small matter of a teacher trying to change things at the school. We do get the early ideas of the greater battle ahead with the introduction of Voldermort.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone tells such a simple story that is focuses more on just character development. We get hints of something bigger to happen in future films but not everything is given away. We get to meet and learn enough about Harry’s past that we want to come back and see what else is to hear. This is a great introduction to the series and the characters we are going to be seeing for plenty of films to come. (9/10)


Actor Review


Daniel Radcliffe: Harry Potter orphan who finds out about his past when he goes to Hogwarts and he learns about a world of wizard to which his parents were apart of. Daniel does a great job as the young hero that was an iconic character to start with. (9/10)


Emma Watson: Hermione Granger one of the young wizards who joins with Harry, she is very well spoken and believes she knows it all. Emma does give a good performance starting off as an unlikeable character but quickly becoming a close friend our hero. (8/10)


Rupert Grint: Ron Weasley first person Harry meets on the way to Hogwarts, he becomes friends with him as he comes off as the only one who is down to Earth. Rupert gives a good performance getting a few extra laughs to break up the serious sides of the story. (8/10)


Alan Rickman: Severus Snape shady professor who seems to be out to stop Harry and collect the Philosopher’s stone. He might have an agenda but what we are left to believe might not be all we see. Alan does a great job to create the mysterious character that even when it gets proven he is not the villain we still suspect. (9/10)


Robbie Coltrane: Hagrid the wizard who bring Harry to Hogwarts and constantly gives away information he shouldn’t be given away. Robbie does give a good performance that is full of laughs. (8/10)


Support Cast: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is full of supporting characters that all offer something to the story, be it for this chapter of the saga or to the bigger picture that is yet to come.


Director Review: Chris Columbus – Chris does a good job directing by offering us a great introduction to all the characters that we are going to be seeing through the films. (9/10)


Adventure: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone offers plenty of adventure elements for our young heroes. (8/10)

Family: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is always going to be known as a family film and this is good for the whole family. (9/10)

Fantasy: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone puts use into a world of fantasy from the moment Hagrid turns up to see Harry Potter. (10/10)

Settings: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone creates beautiful settings that put us in the world of magic. (10/10)
Special Effects
: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone uses solid special effects but some of them have started to date. (6/10)

Suggestion: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone should be watched by all the fantasy and family people out there, it will be creating something for all of them to enjoy. (Watch)


Best Part: Extreme Chess.

Worst Part: Certain special effects looks a bit iffy now.


Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Beginning of the franchise

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: Nominated for three Oscars

Box Office: $975 Million

Budget: $125 Million

Runtime: 2 Hour 32 Minutes

Tagline: Let The Magic Begin.


Overall: Great Introduction

Rating 88

Leprechaun (1993)

logoDirector: Mark Jones

Writer: Mark Jones (Screenplay)

Starring: Warwick Davis, Jennifer Aniston, Ken Olandt, Mark Holton, Robert Hy Gorman, Shay Duffin, John Sanderford, John Voldstad


Plot: An evil, sadistic Leprechaun goes on a killing rampage in search of his beloved pot of gold.


Verdict: Classic Fun Horror


Story: We follow as the Leprechaun looks for its pot of gold which one man has stolen. Trapped he has to wait to be released from his prison. Ten years later a father and daughter move into the house in hopes of doing it up but along with a decorating team the group have to team up to stop the leprechaun on its rampage.

What this film does is create a fun horror experience without being over the top blood, gore and using a low body count. It will always be remembered for being slightly different to all the rest out there and entered the same generic league as Gremlins. It would be fair to say this uses the legend of a leprechaun well, even if it sometimes comes off comical. This is enjoyable and could be enjoyed as it is easy to follow. (7/10)


Actor Review


Warwick Davis: Leprechaun he just wants his pot of gold and he will attack and kill to make sure he gets it back. With plenty of funny lines, funny actions and all round craziness this is a fun character that could easily be put next to a Freddy Kruger like character. Good performance from Warwick who created an iconic horror character. (8/10)


Jennifer Aniston: Tory city girl who has to spend her summer with her father in the country doing up a house. She hates the idea because it is dirty and she just wants clean hotel and swimming pools. After she stays she helps the decorators stop the leprechaun. Good performance in her debut film role from the superstar in the making. (7/10)


Ken Olandt: Nathan local decorator and hunk that has gain the attention of Tory, he has to look at his co-workers and family as they fight against the leprechaun. Good but simple performance. (6/10)


Mark Holton: Ozzie plays the simple minded painter who is good friends with young Alex, they keep the gold hidden hoping it could help in their futures even though he accidently swallows one of the coins. Good performance without over playing the simple side of his character. (7/10)


Robert Hy Gorman: Alex young over smart boy who thinks he knows best, sounds familiar to every type of horror right? He does a good job in the role and gets the best lines. (7/10)


Support Cast: Most of the support cast are the ones the leprechaun gets his hands on killing looking for his gold.


Director Review: Mark Jones – good direction to create an enjoyable horror film that can still be enjoyed today. (7/10)


Comedy: Light hearted comedy used throughout to cover up the horror going on during the film. (7/10)

Horror: Solid horror side to the story, it is more being chased over getting killed by the Leprechaun. (7/10)

Settings: Most of the film is on the small house in the middle of the countryside, this creates solid isolation which always helps a horror film. (8/10)
Special Effects
: Solid special effects used only a few CGI most a practical effects. (7/10)

Suggestion: This is one for the horror fans to watch it is fun and entertaining. (Horror Fans Watch)


Best Part: Leprechaun character.

Worst Part: Bit cheesy

Kill Of The Film: Pogo Stick

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Became a franchise before getting rebooted.

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $8.5 Million

Budget: $900,000

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

Tagline: Her luck just ran out

Trivia: One scene required the Leprechaun to find and eat Lucky Charms cereal, which the company gave them permission to do. Upon seeing the finished film, the company was displeased and would not allow them to use the scene. The film makers had the choice to either cut the scene or to re-shoot it, costing them more money. They chose to re-shoot it, replacing the brand name with an obvious spoof of the name brand cereal, and, made one last additional surprise ending scene while they were filming. Furious with the cereal company for making them re-shoot the scene, they pulled the kid character aside and had him say a new line. His line, “Your luck just ran out!” was changed to “F*ck you, Lucky Charms!” as an obvious reference to the whole ordeal.


Overall: Enjoyable Horror Comedy Just Grab your Four Leaf Clover

Rating 71