‘Willow’ review: Warwick Davis returns in Lucasfilm’s series sequel for Disney+



Disney’s press materials refer to the original 1988 film “Willow” as “beloved,” which despite its fans feels like a nostalgic inflation of a pretty generic George Lucas-crafted fantasy that made an early directorial debut for Ron Howard. had provided That aside, a Disney+ revival series isn’t without its charms, in a more contemporary narrative that brings back Warwick Davis while focusing on the next generation.

The series begins by retelling the events of the film, in which Davies’ simple farmer Willow becomes a witch and engages in a fierce battle to protect a child who, with the help of the swordsman Madmartigan, has placed an ancient evil on his young shoulders. The fate of the state was taken care of. and (finally) Princess Sorsha. The latter were played by Val Kilmer and Joanne Whaley respectively, who married after the film as an off-screen bonus.

Kilmer, in the midst of her battle with cancer, remains out of the picture, but Whaley returns as the now-queen and mother of two grown children, who plays roles in a mythical quest to thwart the evil Crone. Travel to treacherous countries is required.

As for the aforementioned child, Elora Dannon, she grows up in obscurity, “Sleeping Beauty”-like, to protect her, though her identity (an undisclosed spoiler) is soon known. The quest involves a colorful band with many young relationship issues, including Princess Kit (Ruby Cruise), who is secretly in love with the knight she is charged with training (Erin Kellyman, whose credits include Lucasfilm’s “Solo: A Star Wars Story”); and Boorman (Amar Chadha-Patel), a ruthless brawler in Madmartigan mode.

Jonathan Kasdan (who also worked on “Solo”) serves as showrunner, collaborating with four directors who each oversee back-to-back episodes. As constructed, “The Willow” draws on the original as it weaves in flowers that recall the “Lord of the Rings” films, with lots of lush countryside and abundant, sometimes quite violent action. are

As is often the case with the growing subgenre of extended-to-series sequels, “Willow” sometimes feels like it’s spinning its wheels, prolonging Willow, who now Guides the old Elora to master her powers, which he presents as her only hope to save the kingdom. And while Kilmer’s absence leaves a big hole, Kasdan and company do a reasonably good job of filling it, including the late arrival of another knight (Christian Slater) with whom MadMartigan shares some history. shared

Beyond the modern-sounding dialogue and situations, the story showcases plenty of playful irreverence and humor amid action sequences and elaborate fantasy production design. The latter in particular suggests that this revival was no small feat, and to its credit, it looks like the money ended up on screen.

While that combination doesn’t add up to what qualifies “Willow” significantly more of the “beloved” label than its late-’80s predecessor, which is consumed on its own unflattering terms, it’s easy enough to like. .

“Willow” premieres Nov. 30 on Disney+.

Read original article here

Leave A Reply