Her Majesty

Her Majesty is a New Zealand family/children’s film from 2001. The story is set in the 1950s and is about a young girl who loves Queen Elisabeth and dreams about meeting her, and an elderly Maori woman who is passionate about keeping her Maori legacy alive. When the two meet a magical friendship starts to blossom.

This film, which is inspired by true events, is a beautiful story about identity, belongingness, loyalty and friendship. It is about learning to appreciate our earth and the people who came before us.

I absolutely loved this sweet movie! I loved learning a bit about the Maori traditions, and I loved the way the story and the characters evolved. I could easily identify with the 12 year old Elisabeth and her courage and big heart when she stands up for her Maori friend Hira. I could also relate to the curiosity Elisabeth has for the deeply spiritual ways of the Maori people and how she learns to appreciate and even adopt some of these traditions. love the friendship between the two, and how genuine and respectful it is, despite the age difference.

I absolutely recommend this magical film to children, teenagers and adults alike! It is rare to come upon such a gem of a movie in these highly commercial times.

Of course, five out of five stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Three Wishes for Cinderella ( Tři oříšky pro Popelku)

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Three Wishes for Cinderella (Tři oříšky pro Popelku) is a Czech Fairytale Cult Classic Film from 1973. It tells the story of Cinderella, and how she finds the help she needs to win the prince over inside three mysterious hazelnuts.

(The above picture is the Norwegian DVD cover.)

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Do you have a very particular movie you just have to see every year in order to get the proper feel of Christmas? Well this is mine! 😊😊. And I think a lot of Norwegians share that sentiment, as the film is, and has been for at least 30 years, shown on Norwegian TV every Christmas Eve. It is the one time of day all my aunties and my female cousins will sit glued to the TV no matter where we are in the world (Thank god for internet TV!)

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There is no need for me to say much about the plot of the film as we all know the story well. But there are a lot of twists and turns that differ a lot from the Disney versions of the film, and for that reason it makes this beautiful film worth watching. Not to mention, the stunning costumes and the beautiful Czech landscape. Oh, and I have to add that the dress my mother made for me for my Senior Prom was 100% inspired by the dress Cinderella wears for the Ball in this movie! 😄😄

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I highly recommend this gorgeous classic to children and adults alike! 🌸👸🏼💖
Enjoy!

Christmas Story (Joulutarina)

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Christmas story (Joulutarina) is a Finnish Christmas film from 2007 telling the legend of the man we call Santa Claus. There are many films made with the same plot, but this little quiet beautiful film is very different from the rest.

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The story is about little Nikolas who become an orphan after his parents and baby sister are killed in an accident. The people in the village are poor and none of the families can afford to take Nikolas in permanently, so they decide to let him stay for a year with each family in the village. After each year is over Nikolas, on Christmas Eve, gives a gift he has made him self for the family he has stayed with. One year the village has so little food that none can afford to take Nikolas in, so he is apprenticed to the stern and gloomy carpenter who lives outside the village. Nikolas is made to work hard, but he enjoys the work and has soon warmed the cold heart of the carpenter. Nikolas continues the tradition of giving gifts to the village children, and to his surprise, the old carpenter decides to help him.

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This movie is the most esthetically beautiful film I have ever seen in my life. The gorgeous Finnish landscape is breathtaking, and consequently the elegant cinematography unfolds like a dream. The film was shot on the tundra in Utsjoki in Lapland on the border to Norway, and most of the film is showing fairy-like winter scenes. The movie is a declaration of Love to the Finnish-Sami landscape, a true, pure, natural winter wonderland.

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What I love the most about this amazing film is how uncommercial and non-materialistic it is. I feel so many of the more popular Christmas movies, especially about Santa Claus, is just one big sentimental materialistic bonanza, more about the magic of toys and presents than that of Christmas. In “Christmas Story” you will find wax candles instead of flashing LED lights, snow-clad evergreens instead of lavishly decorated Christmas trees, little wooden horses instead of store-bought robots and Legoes. The movie is not only about Christmas, it is about healing from loss, finding new meaning in giving love to gain it, it is about finding hope in unexpected places, and kindness and generosity as a cure for loneliness.

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This movie is definitely on my top five list of my all-time favorite movies.
It is not only a celebration of the Northern landscape, but also of the Nordic cultural heritage.

I will say, if you will only see one Christmas film this year, then it should be this!

I feel, even a hundred million stars is not even enough!⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Journey to the Christmas Star (Reisen til Julestjerna)

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Journey to the Christmas Star is a Norwegian Christmas Fairytale Film from 2012, directed by the very talented and magical Nils Gaup. This film is based upon one of Norway’s most beloved Christmas stories, featuring a wicked count, an evil witch, a brave princess, a missing star, and of course, Father Christmas himself.

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In the beginning of the film we are told the story of how the kingdom’s most beloved little princess got lost in the woods searching for the Christmas Star, after which, the king cursed the star, and both the princess and the star disappeared. Nine years later we meet Sonia, a sweet and brave girl held captive by thieves, but she manages to escape, and in her flight, she ends up in the castle where the king gives her sanctuary, in return she promises the king that she will find the Christmas Star for him, and so the adventure begins.

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Sonia embarks on a difficult journey, she is chased by the wicked count, but finds help in unexpected places. My favorite scenes in the movie are the scene in the Nisse house (Nisse is a Scandinavian faerie creature), where she is made tiny by little Moss in order to escape the count, and the scene in Father Christmas’ Tree garden where she learns that each tree is a soul, and the most beautiful souls grow lush and green whereas the wicked souls are withered and wasted.

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My favorite line in the film is in the beginning when Sonia is asked if she knows where to go to find the Christmas Star, to which she replies: Well, I’ll just go left. And when she is asked why left, her answer is: because that is where the heart is. 😊💖.

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I will heartily recommend this beautiful magical film to kids and grown-ups alike, especially to those who are interested in fairytales and faerie creatures from different cultures. You will get to eat a rich slice of Norway’s Faerie Cultural heritage in this adorable film.

Of course, five out of five stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

P.S if you want to read more about the Scandinavian Nisse, you can do so here:
https://talesfromthefairies.wordpress.com/2014/11/22/the-scandinavian-nisse/

The Christmas Dragon

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The Christmas Dragon is an American Christmas Fairytale Film from 2014. The film was released directly on DVD and it is not your typical ginormous budget Hollywood movie. It is a rather small film, but with a huge heart, lovely storytelling and wonderful child actors. The plot is your typical “save-the-magic-of-Christmas” plot, but it adds dragons, elves, goblins and child snatchers into the mix, and that makes it so wonderfully different!

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In the opening scene we are witness to the killing of Ayden’s (our Heroine) parents by a dragon. Six years later we meet her again, now the resident of an orphanage. One day Ayden ventures into the forest, and there she meets an elf who gives her a magic crystal, a compass that will help her save the magic of Christmas. As soon as the crystal leaves the elf’s hands he turns into a dark goblin. Meanwhile the children in the orphanage who have come of an age are being sold to the highest bidder to meet their destiny as slaves in the mines. Ayden convinces some of her friends to come with her on her quest to save the magic of Christmas and put an end to the dark times in the village. Ahead lies an adventure none of them could have expected where what the children thought of as their enemies become their most valuable helpers.

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I love this film wholeheartedly! It is sweet, magical and inspires the imagination to come up with lovely new universes! Yes, the special effects aren’t very good, but some of the sets are absolutely beautiful, and the children are such good actors! If had seen this film as a kid I would enacted the story in make-believe games over and over again, and probably made up my own stories set in the same universe. I will say though, that I think the film would have worked better as a TV series, I say this only because it would have reached a broader audience, and the fairy tale thrill of it would have allowied each episode to end on a cliffhanger which would have made it even more popular. But anyway, regardless of other reviewers, I loved the film and have already watched it twice!

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I absolutely recommend this sweet fairy film to children and adults alike!
Of course, five out of five stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

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Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is a musical fantasy film from 1971 directed by Mel Stuart and written by Roald Dahl, who is also the author of the book the film is adapted from. The film has later attained a Cult Classic status and is still being shown on television in many countries.

I think there is no need for my to retell the plot here, as we all know the story well, so I am just going to dive into the review. 😊

When I was little I loved Roald Dahl’s books, and I loved Willy Wonka. To me, he was such a magical, eccentric character, who cared about kindness, not about being liked by everyone. I remember thinking that Willy Wonka must have been tired of not fitting in to the wicked world of men, so he made a world for himself full of sweetness and fun and imagination. But as the story enfolds we understand that this world has become lonely, and that Willy Wonka is seeking a kindred spirit to share it with, and he finds this in Charlie Bucket, our hero.

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When I watched the 2005 adaptation of this film, the one directed by Tim Burton, starring Johnny Depp in the lead as Willy Wonka, I was completely torn out of my childhood fantasy. The Willy Wonka in that film was not MY sweet and magical Willy Wonka, he was a selfish dark character, and I did not like him one bit. The whole movie took a very dark turn in interpreting this story, probably due to both Tim Burton and Johnny Depp’s influence, and consequently I did not like the film. The 1971 adaptation on the other hand, I loved!

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Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is a much sweeter and more innocent take on the story, except for perhaps one scene (the one in the dark tunnel). I also loved the singing and dancing sequences, especially the opening one in the Candy Shop. The song “The Candy Man” is such a whimsical hit. (It was later recorded by Sammy Davis Jr.)

And I love, love, love the colors, the costumes and the sets, especially the first room in the Chocolate Factory. So magical! It is very typical the 70s, and of course free of computerized special effects and animation. Everything is actually made by hand! This, to me, gives the movie real soul and artistic quality, something I feel I rarely find in movies of this nature today. Today’s movie industry has a feel of being more about making money than art, I think. (But let’s not get political! 😀 ) It is not only the Chocolate Factory sets that are beautiful, the footage from the streets and buildings in the city is also lovely! The film was shot in Munich in 1970, and the authentic vintage shops are delightful!

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If you love old movies, especially the musical ones, you will also love this sweet film. I highly recommend it to children and adults alike! 👨‍👩‍👦‍👦

(Oh, and by the way, a warning: I still can’t get that Oompa Loompa song out of my head!! 😂😂)

Of course, five out of five stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The Dark Crystal

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The Dark Crystal is a Fantasy film from 1982 directed and written by Jim Henson, and artistically designed by the legendary fantasy artist Brian Froud. The story is a dark tale about a splitting of the world into two, good and evil, and how this has caused evil to rule and destroy the world. It is up to the Gelfling Jen to bring the two parts back together by healing the dark crystal.

The film was marketed as a family film, but it is quite dark, not disturbingly so, but the evil Skesis are really evil, and also quite gross and “monstery”, so I would not necessarily call it a family friendly film, at least not suitable for very young children.

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It is also noteworthy to mention that the film’s special effects ( known as animatronics) was considered quite groundbreaking when it was released, and I can certainly see why. I love these old movies, completely free of today’s computerized special effects and, often poorly done, animation. You can really see the magnificent artistry that has gone into hand-making every little detail in this film, and it is for that reason I just fell in love with it! You really are in a different universe when you watch it, a universe highly influenced by the amazing imagination of the incredible Brian Froud.

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I particularly loved the character of Kira and her friendly monster-dog Fizzgig, she was the hero of the movie for me. I love how she could talk to animals, break them free from cages and summon them to her aid, I also loved that it was she who saved herself and Jen over and over again.

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The adorable Podlings were also amazing! And the scene of the Podling party was my favorite scene in the entire movie (until the evil Garthim came and ruined it all 😠😠!)

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Oh, and I just have to mention that at the end of the movie, in one of the final scenes, I literally screamed at the screen: “JUST HEAL THE CRYSTAL!!!!”, I mean, I screamed really loudly (I hope the neighbors didn’t hear me 😳)

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So, of course, if you haven’t already guessed it by now, I absolutely adored this amazing movie! And I would highly recommend it to everyone, especially, if you like me, love the world of Faery and Fantasy!

When it comes to age…I would have loved this film even as young as 6-7 year old, but I was not very scared of monsters when I was little, so maybe I can say that it is suitable for ages 10 and up (it is just fantasy after all, and I think by that age most kids can tell the difference between fantasy and reality).

A million trillion stars to this AMAZING film!! ✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨