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This movie is just as wonderful as the book! Curious why it's listed as a book though, almost couldn't find it :)
Fed up with their respective foster homes, newly orphaned Prosper and his kid brother Bo break out and head for the open road. Pursued by a pair of rotten relatives and a bumbling private eye the little fugitives make a beeline for the grand canals and serpentine alleyways of Venice, a city much revered by their late mother who believed it was tinged with magic. It is here they fall in with Scipio, the infamous Thief Lord and his band of diminutive pickpockets and purse snatchers who've formed a family of sorts amidst the ruins of an abandoned theatre. At first reluctant to make a living dealing in stolen goods Prosper eventually befriends this ragtag band of fellow unwanted children until a shocking confession from Scipio threatens to tear the little flock asunder. In the meantime Bo begins seeing fantastical beings winking at him from pedestals, fountains and waterways, creatures which may have something to do with a magical carousel his mother once told him about. Could the enchanted carousel be here in Venice? Could it have something to do with the enigmatic Count who has hired the children to steal a most peculiar artifact? And will the mystery be solved before Prosper and Bo are apprehended and dragged back to England? Based on Cornelia Funke's bestselling book director Richard Claus presents us with an uncomplicated world where excruciatingly precious moppets wage gentle warfare against a population of big fat stupid adults. It's a saccharine place of comic book malice (hence no dramatic tension), happy endings and warm fuzzy hugs all around; the cinematic equivalent of a Rice Krispie square. Although the touches of fantasy are well played and the Venetian locations beautiful (why do the locals all speak with a clipped London accent?) this one remains strictly for the single-digit crowd.
A very enjoyable movie. A pretty good adaption of the book. Characters were believable and and the story was face paced. Good family movie (not for little kids though)
I thought this movie was a lot of fun--a very enjoyable way to spend the evening with my family. It had been a few years since I read the book, so I had the advantage of forgetting parts and not constantly comparing the movie to the book. I usually like movies that have been made from books better when I have some distance. My whole family thought this was great.
I really love Cornelia Funke's books. It seems all the movie adaptations of her work suffer. When I discovered this movie on Amazon after reading the book, I decided to give it a fair shake, mainly because I hadn't heard of most of the cast. In the end I was incredibly disappointed. Not worth the time.