Sunday, October 18, 2009


I love Goodwill for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that they provide jobs and training for a number of folks that need it. However, dear Goodwill, you've become a little too high on yourself.

Exhibit A: the new location in Waco? Yeah, taking remainder clothing from GAP and selling shirts for 15$ instead of 35$ isn't what I would call the "Goodwill ethos".

Exhibit B: the VHS quality has plummeted. One could once expect to walk in and find a used copy of STRANGE BREW or maybe even an old version of PULP FICTION, but when the best you can proffer is a second-rate children's movie, I'm cashing out.

I never saw THE LAST UNICORN as a child, and frankly, I'm glad. It's way creepy, complete with morphing animals, a bull on fire, mythical animals vicerally mauling old hags, and naked animated ladies with full-length hair. Oh, and creepy skeletons and cats with peg legs. This film is a virtual George Romero, minus the undead and plus a really terrible soundtrack by the wonder that was America, aka "the horse-with-no-name" band.

Instead of giving this a full-length review, I'll do what the original creators of this poopstand should have done and give it a script. Sure, the original film is based on a crack-fueled 'artistic retreat' vision by Peter Beagle, and accordingly has limited room to breathe, and yes, it has the voicings of everyone from Jeff Bridges to Alan Arkin to FREAKING ANGELA LANSBURY, but this movie was awful from the word 'Go'.

....and so, a THIPTB first: a screenplay.

The last unicorn, painfully aware that she is sorely alone, heads to the local pub and quickly downs a gin and tonic en route to the tattoo parlor to get her ink touched up, drowning her sorrows at being the last remaining mythical creature by getting permanent eyeliner etched above her horsey-eyelids. Makeup firmly in place, she trots out to the Forest of Regrets, immediately rethinking her decision to get green eyeliner sewn into her face.

In a fit of despair, she leaves the Forest, getting caught by a travelling Mary Kay convention, who proceed to give her beauty tips, fashion secrets, arcane visions of netherworld beauty accessible only by trailer parks and VH1. Caught up in visions of pink Cadillacs and mascara, the Unicorn is befriended by a bumbling fashion consultant named Ray, who, after a brief career in geriatric surgery, has taken to selling cosmetics to make ends meet. The two inexplicably escape the convention, without cause or provocation, mumbling something about fair trade.

At some point, the two pick up token comedic relief, and a romantic interest in the form of a well-meaning royalty. Some time later, having lost all audience interest, the unicorn hooks up with Ken, leaving Malibu Barbie to sort out why in the world there is a castle falling into the sea, a 15-foot bull on fire, and a stampede of sea foam charging up the mountainside.

Apologies to those who loved this as a child, including those who have wet their pants at the prospect of this being made into a live-action film. I think I'd rather watch SCREAM 3 again with director's commentary on. Negative one drunk skeleton out of five.


michellenotdawn said...

For some reason, this was one of my favorite movies as a kid.
That being said, I made my husband watch it with me a few years ago.
He hasn't let me pick a movie since.

Seriously, this was a freaky movie! No idea why I liked it so. Did not hold up well to re-watching.

michael said...

Myles, I too never encountered this thing as a child. But, this year I have seen it no less than five times. When the real teachers at my school have meetings, I get stuck on baby sitting duty for their kids. It never fails that all the good movies with Korean subtitles are checked out of the library, and I am left with this, insert worst descriptive word you can thank of, movie. I totally agree with your review and I enjoy your Mary Kay infused script. My problem was I do not thank you got across exactly how horrible the music was. I live in the land of J-pop and K-pop and this was by far the worst thing my ears have ever heard. The songs make me want to swear.
Congrats on getting married. Sorry for not making it. I could not find a ride. I read every post all of you write on this here dang blog [I miss the south some times] and enjoy them immensely.

Michael Rains

Tiffani R said...

First: Movies we liked as kids are seldom as good when watched as adults. My example: Benji - which my brother and I LOVED growing up and watched over and over. As an adult, I bought it and watched. Wow. It was not only bad, but totally lame.

Second: This is what you get when you buy VHS tapes at Goodwill, when we all know the best findings are at garage sales. Case in point: Troop Beverly Hills. (p.s. make your wife read this comment and she will agree).

Thanks for the warning about this flick - I will NOT add it to my "when I eventually have children" list. :) Tiff

John Barber said...

I've never seen this movie, so I'll instead leave you with this bit of trivia: The King James Version of the Bible mentions unicorns nine times. Nine. Times.

the hamster said...

oddly enough, i actually would like to see myles script brought to the silver screen. these is something richly cathartic, i believe, in such tangible pathos, what with the gin and tattoos and make overs. not to mention, ken and unicorn flipping coins for top bunk. i like it. jake gyllenhall can play ken.

Kimberly said...

Hmmm... *note to self* DO NOT watch this movie! I would rather live with the pleasant memories of this being one of my favorite childhood movies. I was way into the magical and mythical back then: The Dark Crystal, The Secret of NIMH, Labyrinth, The Never Ending Story... (Troll...)