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The Secret of the Magic Gourd (2007)

Gigi Leung , Zhu Qi Long , John Chu , Frankie Chung  |  G |  DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Gigi Leung, Zhu Qi Long, Guo Kai Min, He Qing, Meng Qian
  • Directors: John Chu, Frankie Chung
  • Writers: From The Original Story "The Secret Of The Magic G, Screenplay By John Chu And Lam Keeto
  • Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: Cantonese
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 27, 2009
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001JRB17Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,156 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Disney's first Chinese co-production, The Secret of the Magic Gourd is based on a traditional Chinese story by Zhang Tiun Yi about the value of hard work. Eleven-year-old Raymond Bao struggles against the high expectations of his parents, teachers, and fellow students while craving the freedom to pursue his interests and dreams at his own pace. Scoffing at his Grandmother's favorite tale about a magic gourd, Raymond goes fishing and catches a strange talking gourd that begins making his every wish come true. Initially ecstatic at his good fortune, Raymond quickly discovers that the gourd's literal interpretations of his wishes, without regard to consequences, can cause serious problems. While Raymond begins to excel in academics, swimming, and the estimation of his teacher and peers, his instant successes inspire doubt regarding his honesty and morality. Raymond soon realizes that bad thoughts lead to becoming bad, and begins to understand that he must rely on his own inner strength in order to become a better, more successful person. The film's combination of real-life footage and animation is an effective way of portraying a world at once real and imaginary and the cross-cultural message about the value of working hard speaks to every audience. In this English adaptation, the magic gourd is voiced by High School Musical's Corbin Bleu; while the lack of synchronization between voices and mouths in the film is disturbing to some kids and adults, it's a whole lot more accessible than subtitles. Additional voice tracks include Mandarin and Cantonese, and there are also English subtitles for the hearing impaired. The 28-minute "Backstage Disney" feature is an interesting interview (in Chinese with English subtitles) with director and producer John Chu that delves into the story, individual characters, and the innovative collaboration between China Film Group, Hong Kong Centro Digital Pictures, and Disney International. An interactive sorting game and Chinese music video "World of Wonder" round out the bonus features. (Ages 5 and older) --Tami Horiuchi

Product Description

DESCRIPTION: Experience a magical story about the boundless limits of imagination and the strength we each have inside us with Disney s heartwarming film The Secret Of The Magic Gourd. Based on the beloved children s novel and featuring the voice talent of High School Musical s Corbin Bleu, this wondrous fantasy is sure to delight the entire family. It s a truly inspiring story that captures the wonder and awe of childhood, raves Carey Bryson of
When an inquisitive 11-year-old discovers a mythical, magical gourd while fishing, he has no idea of the trouble that lies at the end of his hook. With the ability to grant any and every wish, The Magic Gourd attempts to make all of the boy s dreams come true, but instead succeeds in turning his world upside down. Enjoy every moment of this enchanting adventure as a curious child discovers that the best things in life are those he earns himself

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A foreign Disney film January 31, 2009
This film is a lot of fun. Kids will enjoy it even though adults may not. The story telling is a little different from American style (Asian films usually are), but the earnestness of the actors shines through. The kid was great. His performance was enjoyable. Corbin Bleu's voice over was fantastic. He made the character of Bailey the Gourd very likeable even when Bailey's magic caused more problems than it solved. I was hoping for a song by Bleu but, alas, there is none. The made up bloopers are very funny. The documentary at the end is good for about 10 minutes before it gets boring. The music video doesn't have English subtitles.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Amazon Instant Video
There is one thing that really stands out in the fairy tale "The Secret of the Magic Gourd"--and, thankfully, that is a wonderfully under appreciated gourd. With its crooked grin and sweet, but sad, eyes--our hero struggles to understand the needs and wants of one of the most unappealing movie youths to come around in some time. The gourd (somewhere between a squash and a pumpkin) has a vitality, a humor, and a bizarreness that left me entranced and perplexed. Giving a great, heartfelt performance, this vegetable (technically, I suppose it might be a fruit) pulls out all the dramatic and comedic stops. Its mission in life is to grant wishes to its "master," and although nothing more is ever explained in this fable about the gourd's backstory--I guess you'll either go with it or you won't.

The "master" in question, however, is a bumbling 11 year old. At first, he seems misunderstood--but as he takes the reins of his own desires, it soon becomes clear how self-involved and truly ungrateful the little brat is! His wishes create havoc and misery for everyone, and he continuously takes his furor out on his new, and only real, friend. The old adage "Be careful what you wish for..." has never seemed so true. But our boy never takes responsibility for his own actions, everything is someone else's fault. It becomes grating and irksome--but sit patiently, a big lesson is to be learned.

No real consequences, however, ever befall the boy and the film's lesson is cheapened by making the ending so rosy. The boy is embraced by all the students that he has betrayed and cheated--with no real apology. The boy, who made the swim team by cheating, works really hard and competes in the big race.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The Secret of The Magic Gourd is a famous childrens story, written back in the 1950s, that is brought to vivid life by Walt Disney Productions in conjunction with Centro Pictures Entertainment and China Film Group. It's about a young boy, named Raymond, who has a very vivid imagination but would prefer not to have to work very hard in school to get what he wants.

One day, while fishing, Raymond stumbles upon a mysterious creature, named Bailey, who tells Raymond that he can give him anything he wants. He only needs to ask. At first it seems like a child's dream come true, with Bailey providing Raymond with all kinds of things, such as food, toy robots, and different kinds of fish. But Bailey doesn't always understand Raymond's wishes and makes mistakes that ultimately cause Raymond to look bad in front of the other children at school. In the end, Raymond learns to become more independent and responsible for his own actions, which enables him to be a good son and a much better student.

The film took several years to complete, with some very impressive CGI effects that bring Bailey, the magic gourd, and all his amazing abilities to life. Scenes such as one involving Raymond being chased by a dinosaur in a movie scene that's playing at a local movie theater, comes off quite stunningly. You can really tell that the years it took to finish the production really paid off. The message of the film is also a very universal one that will appeal to children all over the world.

The problem I had with this US DVD version, lies in the English dubbing of the Mandarin-speaking actors. It does not fit very well and some of the dialogue is changed in the translation which causes some very awkward moments. It's almost cartoonish at times, when it shouldn't be.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Honestly, I wasn't all that impressed with this movie. Was it a straight-to-DVD release? I don't recall seeing it listed in theaters. If so, I guess I could understand why...

The basic premise is about a kid who constantly daydreams and doesn't get much done (school work, etc.). He wants everything done for him. Enter the "magic gourd" capable of granting his every whim.

In predictable fashion, he gets everything he wishes for, whether he actually wants it or not. And apparently the gourd is kind of an idiot and keeps screwing up the wishes or fulfilling them in unintended ways. In that way it's kind of like the "magic genie" genre, genies being capricious and happy to foul up a wish if you're not careful about how you phrase it.

Equally predictably, the poor kid gets tired of the gourd fouling up his life and decides it's better to do his own work and revel in his own accomplishments...

To me it felt like a pretty standard story, a bit of a rehash that doesn't do anything particularly new or take many risks. Kids might enjoy it... But there are probably better movies out there? Might be worth a rental for the limited novelty?

On the other hand it's kind of nice to see some other culture's attitudes and legends brought to life. Though I think a lot more could have probably been done with it. Say, if it had been made as a period piece rather than being based in a modern school with a kind of hokey plot and equally hokey special effects.

Another plus is that it does contain special feature on the "making of" and a music video, some interactive games, etc. Again, worth a rental, but I don't know that it'll have any endearing / enduring value.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Odd yet amusing.
This was a very odd story and the obsession on clipping toe nails was hilarious to my husband and children.
Published 1 month ago by jhood
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie with great lesson learned
great movie! great lessons learned! don't know why this wasn't a bigger hit!
My 6 and 8 year old love it.
Published 4 months ago by Christina Haney
3.0 out of 5 stars Kids enjoyed it. just ok for adults
The story and lesson is good but the sound quality caused me to be turning it up and down much like watching tv with loud commercials. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Elaine A
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie for kids
I bought the movie for my grandchildren. It showed events that children go through growing up. It was a delightful but sensitive ideas that children have.
Published 14 months ago by shirley
5.0 out of 5 stars My niece love this movie!
I got this movie cause I've rent it before but couldn't get the whole movie cause it was damaged. So I got it and watched it. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Christie Simmons
5.0 out of 5 stars The Secret of the Magic Gourd
Swell film----- Good condition. Arrived promptly. Thank you. Actually, we are now through with it. Should I resell it? Read more
Published 16 months ago by Ramona B. Rung
5.0 out of 5 stars Great family movie!
This movie is funny, quirky and interesting for grown ups and kids 5+. It teaches a hard lesson: nothing comes easily in life, it's all about hard work. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mrs. DL
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable kids film
My kids love this film and have watched it half a dozen times! Their play date friends enjoyed it, too. Read more
Published 23 months ago by For Real
3.0 out of 5 stars Whimsical Film For Adults - Children Will Ask LOTS Of Questions Due To...
I never thought an animated gourd would be cute, but it is. Kinda like "The Brave Little Toaster", this morality story has the main focus on be careful what you wish for... Read more
Published on March 21, 2012 by Sheila Chilcote-Collins
2.0 out of 5 stars Uninteresting movie
I saw Disney and took a chance. Bad idea. They are obviously trying to take the Chinese made film and make money by throwing a High School Musical voice on it. Read more
Published on June 10, 2011 by JLL
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