The Color of Magic
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Inside a magical realm known as Discworld, a naive tourist (Astin) is on holiday until a terrible fire breaks out, forcing him to flee along with an incompetent wizard (Jason). Now, as the clueless pair set out on a magical journey across the disc, neither realizes that they are merely pawns in an elaborate board game being played by the Gods. After encountering a pair of barbarians, they take a trip to an inverted mountain housing dragons that only exist in imagination, survive a fall off the edge of the disc during a perilous visit to the country Krull, and attempt to beat the wizard's former classmate (Curry) to a collection of eight spells that could save Discworld from total destruction.
A gag reel, deleted scenes and cast interviews
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I'm not saying it's perfect (5 stars not withstanding); the editing somehow gives the impression that matters are dragging along at a leisurely pace, whereas, of course, all hell is breaking loose in about 50 different ways.
The shifty-eyed Rincewind is set (by the Patrician) to be nursemaid to the colorful Two Flower, who has just invented the genre of The Tourist on Discworld (the fantastic world invented by Terry Pratchett, which is shaped more or less like a rotating LP, with the water forever falling off the edge). Meanwhile, a dastardly wizard is bent on rising to the top of the Unseen University (of Wizardry) by assassinating every wizard ahead of him. A mystery of cosmic proportions presents itself: why is the Giant Atuin, the enormous Turtle on whose back Discworld is supported, headed on a collision course with an enormous new star?
Veteran Discworld afficionados will know that summarizing a Pratchett Plot is an exercise in futility. Suffice it to note that all sorts of regulars are delightfully introduced, from the Patrician (Jeremy Irons, beatiful!) Cohen the Barbarian (Awesome!) The Luggage (Stupendous!!!) the Head Librarian (Er. Ook?) and The Broken Drum. There are transparent dragons, female heroes, and even an enormous Troll, and a floating mountain. Sean Astin plays the accidental tourist, and does a beautiful job.
I think the movie has been brilliantly designed and executed, even if Rincewind is occasionally mildly disconcerting, as though he isn't just an inept wizard, but actually teaches inept wizarding at an acting school. Still, we must be grateful to David Jason (who portrays Rincewind) because he's one of the producers, and it really is a beautiful job at many levels. The special effects are just beautifully effective.
Some of the peculiarities of the movie are inherited from the book, I believe. The Color of Magic seems to have been the first of the Discworld books, and Discworld doesn't yet have the lived-in feel that the later books have. Where possible, the movie seems to improve on the book. (Terry Pratchett himself appears as one of the wizards, in case you're interested. There is apparently an appearance by Granny Weatherwax, though I can't think where; possibly in the Rite of Spring). The Inside Joke feeling some viewers might get is inevitable, since it's so difficult to present such a complex situation in each book, let alone a movie. I wish they'd got a real Orang-utan, but that's probably asking too much. (I thought I saw one in Hogfather, but maybe they just had a bigger primate budget.) It's simple, mad entertainment, but it's probably best to watch it with someone familiar with Discworld, and a strong tranquilizer.
Insanely recommended. Two bananas up!
The only trouble is that there is a LOT of material to cover (Pratchett novels are never thin!) So, to the eye that is not familiar with Discworld, I fear that these adaptations may seem to ramble a bit. But, in any case, the rambling is always fun. The apparent rambling is due to the fact that the storyline sticks very closely to the books, something I appreciate as a fan, and only hope that newcomers to Discworld don't feel lost or overwhelmed by the enormous scope that has been crammed into a short, movie-length time span.
Speaking of newcomers, I was delighted by Astin's portrayal of Twoflower, even though I had actually pictured Twoflower as more of a skinny, geeky type when I read the books. Astin really carried off the sense of innocent wonder and plain fool's luck that kept Twoflower alive throughout all his adventures, and everything he did, even the simplest little line or gesture, just made me smile.
Rincewind was also very convincing, and Cohen the Barbarian was completely delightful. I can't look at shoop the same way anymore!
I wasn't too keen on the way the Luggage was rendered, though. I think its legs really should have looked more like those of a millipede. The humanesque legs were distracting and unbelievable. I guess I had pictured the legs as being more like those of a millipede. Your mileage may vary!
Altogether a fun romp with a generous handful of thought-provoking zingers thrown in; almost as good as a Terry Pratchett novel, and that's saying a lot.
this DVD called The Color Of Magic. Fun to watch the tourist be led around by Discworld's
more inapt wizard. The tourist travels with a multi-legged, alive, trunk which is an
I love this series of DisWorld books by Terry Pratchett. And this English made DVD is a hoot to watch
the character brought to life. I bought one book just to see what they were about and I love the story
line so much I went out and bought all the DiscWorld series books and DVDs I could. DiscWorld is a make believe
world of a giant sea turtle, with four elephants on it's back, with a large disc on the backs of the four
elephants that floats around space. Most stories take place on the discworld but there have been occasion
when the inhabitants of discworld try to climb down the disc to see what gender the sea turtle is.
Humor abounds with an English accent with witches, drawfs, trolls, elfs, watchmen and other delightful
categories of folks with a dragon\creature thrown in......and now one tourist.
The Discworld is a strange place filled with magic instead of science (they have cameras but they work differently: a tiny imp inside the camera paints the picture). We meet Rincewind, the inept wizard who is kicked out of the university for wizards and is tasked by the Patrician to accompany the Disc's first tourist, Twoflower. It's unfortunate that Rincewind can't do magic ever since he looked at an ancient tome of spells on a dare and one of the 8 Great Spells lodged itself inside his head.
It's a bit campy at times and it's done on a budget so many FX are not top notch but it's a fun way to spend an evening. And after watching it do yourself a favor and pick up the novels and learn more, as this movie only scratches the surface of this world.