Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium review

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By: Shireen Korkzan <skorkzan@hilite.org>

When I first got the assignment to reviewing a G-rated movie about a toy store, I instantly regretted taking it in the first place. I’m seventeen years old and I am just now eligible to go into the movie theaters and watch R-rated movies. Like other seventeen-year-olds, I want to watch violence and gore and sensuality and drama, not magic. I thought I would never go back to liking children’s movies. Little did I know that I was entirely wrong, and after watching “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium” I felt reminiscent to my past childhood of believing in magic and wonder (and having a fondness of playing with toys). Then again Dustin Hoffman and Natalie Portman have never failed me.

“Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium” starts out with the 243-year-old Mr. Magorium (Hoffman) passing down his magical toy store to the insecure and unconfident Molly Mahoney (Portman). After announcing his time for passing away, the entire store itself begins to throw a “temper tantrum,” not wanting Mr. Magorium to pass away after so many years. The walls turn gray, the finger paint turns black and all the stuffed animals begin to frown. After Mr. Magorium finally passes away, it seems as if the only person who has hope of bring the toy store back to its original splendor is unsocial Eric Applebaum (Zach Mills), a little boy who spends most of his days inside the toy store to try and make friends.

After watching “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium,” I began to remember my sense of thinking of when I was the age of the children awed by the magical toy store, where “you have to believe it to see it.” The graphics felt realistic, making viewers feel as if the whole movie really was based on magic. I admit it, I felt like a little kid again, without feeling immature. I haven’t felt that way in a long time, probably not since watching “Ratatouille” or the 40th anniversary edition of “The Jungle Book.” It felt really good. It was fresh, like something new. In the world of “High School Musical” and “Hannah Montana,” thank you director Zach Helm for bringing in something unique that can be appealing to family members of all ages.

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