Surprise!: this Story Never Ends

Pullet Surprise (1997)

Foghorn Leghorn is one of my favorite Looney Tunes because my dad loved the character, but this lesser entry featuring the character is only somewhat amusing.

The NeverEnding Story (1984)

The NeverEnding Story (1984)

Bastian Balthazar Bux reads a book to distract him from the troubles of his adolescence.

The book tells the story of Fantasia and its fight against The Nothing. The child princess ruler enlists Atreya to save the kingdom. During his journey, he fights a werewolf named Gmork and befriends a luckdragon named Falkor, before discovering the only one who can save Fantasia is Bastian.

This elaborate allegory for the way adulthood destroys the natural imagination of childhood is one of several puppet driven fantasy films popular in the mid 1980s. I prefer this sweet and earnest film to the dark nightmare of The Dark Crystal (1982) and Labyrinth (1986).

While I, and countless other 80s children, still occasionally fantasize about flying with Falkor, this doesn’t hold up as well as I remember it. The plot’s a little too complex and the special effects haven’t aged particularly well, but it’s big heart makes it an enjoyable diversion.

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