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Thomas and the Magic Railroad

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Editorial Reviews

All aboard for fun-fueled adventure in Thomas the Tank Engine's first film ever, starring Peter Fonda, Mara Wilson and Alec Baldwin. For as long as anyone can remember, the Island of Sodar has been the realm of enchantment, innocence, and talking trains. The steam engines suddenly find themselves heading for a heap of trouble at the claw of the evil Diesel #10. This one's a totally terrible trainwith devious plans to dominate the other engines by finding and crushing their dwindling supply of magical gold dust. Lily (Mara Wilson) has a hunch that her grandfather (Peter Fonda) holds the key to rescuing the little trains in his workshop on Muffle Mountain. She meets up with Mr. Conductor (Alec Baldwin) and, along with a caboose of colorful characters, they return the sparkle to their island!

Special Features

  • Deleted Footage

Product Details

  • Actors: Alec Baldwin, Cody McMains, Russell Means, Peter Fonda, Jared Wall
  • Directors: Britt Allcroft
  • Writers: Britt Allcroft, Rev. W. Awdry
  • Producers: Britt Allcroft, Barry London, Brent Baum, Charles Falzon, John Bertolli
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, Live, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: October 31, 2000
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (302 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004XPPF
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,546 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Thomas and the Magic Railroad" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By C. Asher on February 2, 2005
Format: DVD
For some reason I can't fathom my daughters love this movie, but sitting through it is painful. The little boy in the movie should consider another career, and Peter Fonda is more wooden than the trains (although if you're in the right mood his performance is almost funny, but mostly it's just painful). Alex Baldwin tried, but the script and the direction kept this movie from being anything more than dismal. The Thomas series is much more entertaining and well-written. Do yourself a favor and don't spend money on this dog.
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62 of 75 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 5, 2005
Format: DVD
This movie was by far the worst Thomas production ever made. I was horrified when I discovered that Britt Allcroft wrote it; now we know why she always had a co-writer when she was writing episodes for the TV series, and why she was kicked out of Gullane Entertainment afterwards.

The script is so poorly written that I feel sorry for the trees used to make the paper that it was written on. The Island of Sodor, in the TV series an island off the coast of England that was more or less normal, has been turned into a magical ghost town populated by talking trains and literate animals. Why Britt Allcroft chose to make such a rapid departure from the TV series I will never know. She also filled the script with complicated plot devices that few children will be able to understand (you'd need to be Einstein or Stephen Hawking to figure out the answer to the riddle on the windmill wall), and threw her healthy knowledge of the Thomas characters out of the window (Thomas is portrayed as a goody-goody, Bertie as being annoyingly hyperactive, Henry as being a whiny pain in the neck, and James as being so short of brain cells that he doesn't know what the word "shoo" means).

Usually, bad scripts bring in bad acting, and this movie was no exception. Alec Baldwin's character was so annoying (I'm sure I'm not the only person who wishes Diesel 10 had dropped him off the viaduct), and took the limelight that should have been given to Thomas and the other engines. Peter Fonda's character was the most miserable, depressing character in the history of children's movies. Mara Wilson's character was better, but still seemed like a teenage girl younger than her years. And what was the point of having big name actors anyway? It's not as if little children are going to recognise them.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Cinthianna on April 22, 2005
Format: DVD
I was so excited to get this movie for my brother who loves Thomas and knows everything a three year old can know about trains. I only wish I had read a couple of reviews first. I almost did not buy it just because Alec Baldwin was in it and after seeing this movie, I'll never waste another dime on anything he is in.

So why is this movie so bad? Let's start with the story. It has more to do with Mr. Conductor (a stupid name) than it has to do with Thomas and his friends. The dialogue is horrible. When it does show an engine from the Island of Sodor, it bears no resemblence to the engines in the beloved books. For instance, James comes across as an idiot. Thomas is nearly absent for most of the movie. The voices of the engines sound like little kids, which is silly. On the other hand the character played by Mara Wilson should have been played by a little kid. She is very unconvincing in this role and the boy, Patch is even worse. Some characters seem to be there for no reason at all, like Mr. Conductor's cousin. But that is the way the entire movie goes, things just happen for no reason, leaving the viewer with a bunch of annoying questions: Why is Diesel 10 so angry and mean? Why does Mr. conductor go from the "real" world to the Island of Sodor? Why would Sir Topham Hatt trust this simpleton to run his railroad? Why was Peter Fonda's character able to get to Sodor in the first place? Why was this movie ever made? Why did nobody check in with the original stories to see if any of this made sense? Why was Britt Allcroft allowed to do this kind of damage to Thomas the Tank Engine? Why am I so angry about this? Did they show this movie to a test audience? If so how did it ever make it to theaters?

In short, this is THE WORST movie I have ever seen from the screenplay to the acting to the editing. It has not one redeeming quality.
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30 of 37 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 25, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Our 3yr old boy loves Thomas. We have all the videos and trains, etc. He wants to watch this thing every day. He repeats lines from the movie and acts them out all day. It was great for him. We took him to the movies to see it together. He loved that, too. For him, we would do it all again in a minute.
As parents, we could have done without the "mean-ness" of Diesel #10 and the fact that he wants to "dominate and destroy". He also uses the word "stupid" several times. Not nice.
As adult movie critics, we saw laughably poor acting (with the exception of "Mr. Conductor" and "Junior". (Notice that even some of the 5-star reviewers agree.) Britt Alcroft directed and wrote it, and it is obvious that she should have asked for help from someone who knew what they were doing. If you pay attention, expect to be confused. We expected more because we actually enjoy watching all of the other videos, and they are really well done.
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