“At Alfea College, Stella, Aisha, Flora, Musa, and Techna all graduate and become fairy guardians of their home planets. But, Bloom must watch graduation from the sidelines. The Winx try to save Bloom’s parents and the planet.”– Anonymous, IMDB.
Winx Club: The Secret of the Lost Kingdom is an Italian CGI animated feature film, based on the television series Winx Club, taking place after the events of the first three seasons. The film premiered on November 30, 2007 in Italian cinemas.
This movie requires a bit of knowledge about the Winx Club series. Bloom, a 16-year-old girl from Earth, discovers she has magical abilities and enrolls at Alfea, a school for fairies in the Magical Dimension. There, she meets Stella, Flora, Musa, and Tecna. Together they form the Winx. They encounter and befriend the boys from the Red Fountain school of Specialists. They also make enemies, mainly a trio of witches called the Trix. In the series it’s discovered that Bloom is the long-lost Princess of Solaria, sent to earth after her Kingdom was destroyed. The movie picks up here, as Bloom attempts to uncover the secrets surrounding her heritage.
Some thoughts from me (Potential spoilers below)… I never watched the Winx Club TV show, but I was aware of it. The character designs in the original Winx Club series (which used 2D animation) always seemed a bit ‘off’ to me, but I always chalked it up to a matter of personal taste. That said, the 3D versions of the Winx Club characters seem like they’re just plain unpleasant for everyone. There’s definitely a weird uncanny valley effect to them. It’s the same problem the characters in the 3D Swan Princess sequels have. Character designs for 2D animation might not necessarily translate well into 3D.
The big thing that I laugh at in this and other Winx Club movies is how all the characters can’t ever seem to take things seriously. In every dangerous situation they always seem to manage to throw out a quip, usually about fashion, that’s funny for the wrong reasons. At least, I assume we’re supposed to find what they say witty and charming. I personally find it happens too often and tends to undermine any drama the scene is trying to create. I’m not against attempts at undercutting drama with a joke, but the joke needs to be good before I’ll give it a pass.
One kinda interesting thing with this one is that, unlike other kids movies, The Secret of the Lost Kingdom doesn’t shy away from using the words ‘death’ or die. Character’s lives are threatened and they don’t beat around the bush when describing the consequences. It’s also kinda neat to see this glittery butterfly lady shoot giant firey death lasers at her foes.
So feel free to give this one a look, though I will mention this one won’t be a laugh-a-minute experience. The humour will come primarily from hearing the dialogue that comes out of the characters, versus something like Sindy: The Fairy Princess, where you could watch that film without sound and still find plenty to talk about.
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