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A Couple Of Shimmering STARDUST Reviews!

Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here. I can’t wait to show this film to my wife. I think it’ll be one of her favorites this summer. They’re doing a number of early screenings, and I think that’s a smart move. The film needs some lovin’ in order to get the word out that it’s a lot of fun. Hopefully word of mouth is strong and picks up the closer we get to release:

I went to see Stardust last night in the Aventura mall in Miami Florida. The theatre was packed to the rafters, the show was held up a half hour so they could literally fill every seat in the house. At the last minute they let one of the two rows resereved for studio exectutives up to the general publuc, and they clamed they turned away over 200 people. To top things off the air conditioning was not working properly, in the summer, in South Florida, which made things a little uncomfortable to say the least. They started off by announcing that all cell phones must be off and that if any device is seen out, or any screen light up regardless of what it is, you will be kicked out for good. Some people tested this theory and within 10 minutes of the start of the film people with flashlights were ushering people out as they saw fit. I applaud the theatre for doing this and think it should be common practice. On to the movie! The show started with no previews or announcements, the screen started right into the movie, there weren't even opening credits to what I remember. The screen starts and I was surprised to hear Ian McKellens voice heard narrating the film. From then on I was enthralled with this film, I though it was paced perfectly and is one of the closest adaptations of a book ive seen put to screen. Charlie Cox did a fantastic job of growing from the awkward boy who really doesn't quite belong where he is to the man he becomes in the land of Stormhold. Ive never been a huge fan of Claire Danes, and I didn't initially like her when I saw her onscreen as Yvaine, but her portrayal of the character grew on me as is intended with the pace of the film. De Niro steals every scene he's in. There's nothing else to say about it. You love his character and cant take your eyes off his character every time he appears. Pfeiffer plays the evil witch to a T. She really got into the role and was perfect casting, beautiful, deadly, and aging. Ive always heard actors say its a lot of fun playing the bad guy, and this defiantly holds true for Pfeiffer playing Lamia. The strory flowed very well, it never seemed to get boged down, there were enough story lines to always be moving forward, but not to many to where you couldn't keep track of what was going on. There was some great comic relief moments in the form of the princely ghosts and a brief scene from Ricky Gervais. Lamias sisters also provided some great scenes with dark comedy. The movie also contains one of the most inventive sword fight scenes ive seen to date. The effects were very good and believable. If you sit and analyze I'm sure you'll find flaws, but it was never to a point that it took you out of the movie. I was completely satisfied with this movie and as far as I could tell so was everyone else in the theatre, people laughed, applauded, awed and cheered at all the appropriate moments. The conversations I struck up in the lobby all the same consensus as mine. I highly recommend this movie, I don't know how else to put it. I have no ending, so I will simply take a small bow, Thankyou. If you use this, please call me MrFantomHawk

It’s nice to see that Gaiman is happy with the film. I feel like Gaiman deserves some good adaptations of his work, and he took a real chance on Matthew Vaughn, letting him have these rights. I think that chance paid off... does this next reviewer agree?

Hello AICN folks, this is QuestionMark with a review of “Stardust.” It’s going to be a pretty effusive review, so in order to allay accusations of being a studio plant I’ll note that I previously had a mediocre review of “The Chronicles of Riddick” posted some time back. I caught “Stardust” tonight in Tempe, right nearby Arizona State University. It’s based on a Neil Gaiman graphic novel that I’m sorry to say I haven’t read, but am now inclined to check out. The story is about a young man named Tristan, who lives in the hamlet of Wall, an English town bordered by a stone wall that marks the boundary between England and fantastic kingdom called Stormhold. One night while Tristan is courting Victoria, the shallow object of his affection, the two witness a falling star shoot to earth a great distance from Wall. Tristan vows to obtain the fallen star as a demonstration of his love for Victoria. When he arrives at the impact crater he is surprised to discover the fallen star is actually a beautiful girl clutching a gem. It turns out the stars in the sky are cosmic women passively watching over Earth. Boy, that sounds stupid. Trust me though, it works. Anyway, Tristan is undaunted and decides he will bring back the star, named Yvaine, back to Victoria. He has competition though: a long-lived witch named Lamia is tracking Yvaine, looking to sacrifice her in order to return her powers and erase the ravages of age. Meanwhile, a group of princes are competing to recover the dead king’s ruby, the very gem that caused Yvaine to plummet to earth, and the item that will determine the line of succession. My friends and I generally agreed that the best point of comparison for the movie is “the Princess Bride.” Stardust isn’t quite as classic, but it is a highly enjoyable film that succeeds in telling an old-fashioned tale with equal parts fantasy, adventure, romance, and comedy. The Fantasy: The world that “Stardust” inhabits is full of casual magic that goes beyond similar movies, using magic in very clever ways. One character is enchanted so that she will be unable to perceive Yvaine in any way. At one point the witch Lamia sets a trap for Yvaine, turning a chariot into full-blown inn & stables. We also get a very cool transformation scene where we see the character morphed into a mouse from his point of view. I really liked that doing this magic had a price; turning a boy into a goat results in liver spots. The Adventure: The movie does a good job of creating a palpable sense of danger for Yvaine, as she is being sought by a murderous witch intent on cutting out her heart. There is a fantastic sword fight toward the end, where the witch manipulates the corpse of another character in a sort of voodoo ragdoll fight. The fighting choreography is solid, though brief. The Romance: It should be pretty clear from the start that Tristan is not ultimately going to end up with Victoria. Despite the fairly limited time for development I found that I actually believed Tristan and Yvaine’s burgeoning love. The scenes on Captain Shakespeare’s air ship are pivotal to this development, and DeNiro is great as the air pirate with a fearsome reputation. When I saw the previews I thought he would stand out too much in a fantasy world, what with being the only American accent and also the fact that he is Robert Freaking DeNiro, but he was wholly convincing. The Comedy: “Stardust” has some really funny running gags. My favorite bit was the system of succession in the kingdom of Stormhold. It seems that it is traditional for the male heirs to the throne to kill each other off to claim their throne. At the start of the movie the current king (an amusingly bloodthirsty Peter O’Toole) is at his deathbed, egging on his remaining four sons. It is clear the king views his lineage as little more than a sort of gruesome cock fight (har): his sons are simply named Primus, Secondus, Tertius and so forth to Septimus (Latin for “First” through “Seventh”). Once dispatched, the ghosts of the princes hang around until the true heir is determined. It is fun watching the ghosts bicker and commentate the action. By far the funniest scene involves Captain Shakespeare, but should not be given away in the slightest. The performances are top-notch pretty much across the board. Charlie Cox as Tristan is good as a guy who starts out as a bit of a callow jerk but transforms into a noble hero. Claire Danes as Yvaine the star is luminous (literally). Michelle Pfeiffer clearly relished her role as the witch Lamia, a witch living on borrowed power who degenerates into a grotesque hag as she uses her magic. Again, Robert DeNiro was a scene-stealer as Captain Shakespeare. As one of those rare movies that has just about everything, “Stardust” deserves to be a big hit. I suspect it will end up being a timeless “comfort” film for many, much like the Princess Bride. It is the best post-Lord of the Rings fantasy film I have seen (wait, just remembered Pan’s Labyrinth…maybe the second best). Highly recommended.
Readers Talkback
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  • July 21, 2007, 7:55 a.m. CST

    Laputa!

    by Alientoast

    All I could think of when I saw the preview was Castle in the Sky ;)

  • July 21, 2007, 8:20 a.m. CST

    looking forward to this one

    by barnaby jones

    But those of us in the U.K have to wait for fecking ages !

  • July 21, 2007, 8:23 a.m. CST

    Still not sure....

    by fxmulder35

    The trailer was horrible. Forced. Now some good reviews. Actually, from the un-inspired trailer...I was marking this off my list. Let's hope it's as good as they say.

  • July 21, 2007, 9:26 a.m. CST

    questionable advertising

    by scratcher

    I was shopping for groceries yesterday and saw an ad for Stardust...on the dividers you to separate your food from the next guy's at checkout. If that's their ad campaign, watch out!

  • July 21, 2007, 10:09 a.m. CST

    Uh... no.

    by Drunken Rage

    Why is Robert DeNiro still alive? Damn, I wish he'd just go away already.

  • July 21, 2007, 10:51 a.m. CST

    Hard to believe Michelle Pfeiffer is almost 50

    by Osmosis Jones

    God DAMN.

  • July 21, 2007, 12:52 p.m. CST

    It was OK... not great.

    by codymr

    Saw this the other day... I liked Matthew Vaughn's LAYER CAKE and I really enjoy the works of Niel Giaman, so I was looking forward to this. Despite a great cast and even some very fun cameos, I have to say I it never came together for me, despite some good individual scenes. The Princess Bride/Shrek "anti fairy tale" comedy is enjoyable though. That said, my GF, not one for SF or fantasy films, loved it?!

  • July 21, 2007, 2:05 p.m. CST

    The year of Neil Gaiman

    by mascan42

    With Stardust, Beowulf and Coraline all coming out in the next few months, maybe he'll have enough clout to finally get Good Omens and American Gods made.

  • July 21, 2007, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Sleeper hit of the summer...

    by Yeti

    word of mouth will start to spread on this one. Trust.

  • July 21, 2007, 7:07 p.m. CST

    The Chronicles of Riddick

    by PwnedByStallone

    I'm sorry but I fucking LOVED this film. I don't get the hate it got. I thought it was one of the most imaginative and entertaining science fiction films of the past decade.

  • July 21, 2007, 8:29 p.m. CST

    seriously

    by MrQuick

    where the hell are the advertisements and trailers for this. I don't feel as though they have made any effort to push this thing out. The only way you would know about this movie is to A. read this site , B. Follow Neil Gaiman, C. come to you in a dream.

  • July 21, 2007, 8:33 p.m. CST

    Ricky Gervais?

    by Clonetrooper

    Why doesn't anybody mention him in their reviews. Because in all honesty he's my first and foremost reason for seeing this picture.

  • July 21, 2007, 9:33 p.m. CST

    YAAAY I got my review posted

    by mrfantomashawk

    oh and clonetrooper, I briefly mentioned Ricky Gervais, I was trying not to leave any spoilers in the review tho.

  • July 22, 2007, 3:37 a.m. CST

    Who's Ricky Gervais?

    by Doc_Strange

    Never heard of him. But other than that, this looks like it could be a great fantasy film. Definitely will pay to see this.

  • July 22, 2007, 4:08 a.m. CST

    The cast is awful.

    by AnnoyYou

    What was the director thinking? DeNiro is usually terrible in genre things like this, and Danes is a proven show-killer. The lead actor is totally pallid as well. This looks like a terrible adaptation of a really good book -- much like the upcoming execrable "The Dark is Rising." What is wrong with these people?

  • July 22, 2007, 5:46 a.m. CST

    Neverwhere..

    by Redfive!

    It would be cool to see the graphic novel "not the novel" adapted to the screen,I havent seen the tv series but I heard its not very good.

  • July 22, 2007, 5:52 a.m. CST

    ANNOY YOU

    by caspartine

    YES YOU DO there are probably many things to criticise this movie for but to have a go at the cast without even seeing the film is idiotic

  • July 22, 2007, 9:31 a.m. CST

    Chronicles Of Riddick?!

    by codymr

    Did I miss something? what's with all the COR comments? Fun flick, but kinda "yesterdays news paper" don't you think?

  • July 22, 2007, 4:21 p.m. CST

    I CAN NOT WAIT...

    by blackthought

    why must I? sighs.

  • July 23, 2007, 4:35 p.m. CST

    Big Gaiman fan

    by Punch Man

    But the more ads I see for this the worse it looks. Each thing I see for this seems to be advertising a different film.

  • July 31, 2007, 10:02 p.m. CST

    Star Dust

    by 7movies4plays

    First question, who greenlighted this movie? Answer it had to be a team decision. First its a simplified fairytale. Second Bob Deniro waits too long to get in the movie. Third they wasted 30 million. Fourth the acting sucked. Fifth, they should of had DeNiro really meet M. Phifer. Sixth, the movie sucked. If it wasn't for me thinking I lost something, Damm cannot turn on the phone to find anything on the floor, I would of left. Aint this movie on bittorrent already? Seventh the securityty kept using those night view finders. Was Bin Laden in the audience? Eight, the screenplay sucked. Nine, well the typical hollywood ending. Ten, the whole wall thing SUCKED. Eleven, I would have asked for a refund, if it wasn't a free movie preview. Twelve, the next time De Niro wants to combine his Analyze this, Good Fellas persona with lets say Mork meets Mindy in drag. Don't do it as Joe Pesci would say.

  • Aug. 11, 2007, 6:21 p.m. CST

    Ugh, I liked it way better than Pan's Labyrinth

    by Drath

    Sorry, that movie was too gruesome and repugnant for me. It really was the cat's meow to some people, but I found it utterly dispicable. To each his own. Stardust on the other had was loads of charm and fun. I wish it was doing better in the box office, it deserves a better reception that it seems to be getting. Sadly some movies I shall not name that were absolute crap will probably have better Box Office this year than Stardust. Damn shame, but thank god for DVD.