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  Publicity Stills of
"Winx Club: The Secret of the Lost Kingdom"
(Courtesy of Cathay-Keris Films)

Genre: CG Animation/Children
Director: Iginio Straffi
Cast: Letizia Ciampa, Chris Kent, Perla Liberatori, Katie McGovern
RunTime: 1 hr 25 mins
Released By: Cathay-Keris Films
Rating: PG
Official Website: http://www.winxclubthemovie.com/

Opening Day: 20 November 2008


16 years ago the most powerful warrior wizards of the Magic Dimension sacrificed themselves to fight against absolute evil. Now the fate of a kingdom is in the hands of a young girl: Bloom, the fairy of the Dragon’s flame. Accompanied as usual by her Winx Club girlfriends, Bloom must face the biggest challenge: enter the depths of the obscure dimension and fight against absolute evil in order to bring her parents back to life and finally reveal the mystery linked to her origins. Will Bloom, Flora, Stella, Aisha, Musa and Tecna succeed in defeating the most terrifying creatures of her nightmares and find again the last king of Domino? And will Bloom manage to save the lost kingdom and finally become Princess of Domino? The destiny of the entire Magic Dimension depends on the outcome of this conflict.

Movie Review:

You’ve heard all these somewhere before: believe in yourself; look inside your heart; trust those who love you; courage is the greatest gift of all, blah blah blah. And before you scorn the messages this animated feature wants you take home after the credits roll, you must one understand who this movie is made for. What, you were expecting something more sophisticated when the movie poster’s bright pink background is staring straight at you? And do the six cutesy girlish fairies tell you nothing at all?

So, this 20 something male reviewer decides to imagine himself as a 10 year old and sit through this giggly affair. No, there was no urge to leave the cinema hall halfway, simply because there is so much joy and delight from the kids around him (mostly girls, as you’ve expected) that he figured that he won’t be a rude spoilsport by walking out in the middle of the movie.

Based on a 2004 Italian animated fantasy adventure series, this 3D CGI feature movie is dubbed in English and takes place after the series’ third season (four seasons have been produced already). The protagonist of the show is Bloom, and together with her other five fairy friends, they are on a mission to uncover the secret of the lost kingdom (hence the movie title, get it?). She is also on the search for her parents whom she has lost since young. Along the way, they meet with an evil force which turns things upside down and create chaos in the happy airy fairyland. Can the six fairies save the day? But of course!

While every kid in the audience already knows that good will triumph over evil by the end of the movie, each one of them will sit tight in their comfortable seats as Bloom, Flora, Stella, Musa, Techna and Layla look pretty in their fairy outfits while fighting the evilly ugly witches and monsters. What kind of names are “Bloom”, “Flora”, “Stella”, “Musa”, “Techna” and “Layla” again? Fairy names of course!

From the moment the title song “Enchantix” starts playing, keeping the movie tempo upbeat with poppy melodies and similarly catchy lyrics like “Shining fairy powder pouring on me/ Magic Enchantix/ My powers will be at the maximum/ I’m invincible/ I’m ready to go”, there is no way any young girl from six to 12 years old can resist the charm. Expect an unstoppable swarm of franchised products like toys, clothes and books, if there aren’t any already.

We love how each fairy has a unique power in areas like music, water, technology and plants. It makes things so much easier to follow in the colorfully crammed CGI animation. While the animation techniques are by no means Pixar standards (it’s going to be difficult surpassing that animation giant), the production values are not shoddy either. There are certain adorably animated animal creatures and pixies that will fascinate you with its sheer cuteness.

So while the kids are kept amused, what are the adults supposed to look out for? Well, there are a few decent action sequences, a few pop culture influenced lines (sample: “With great powers come great popularity”), naughtily titled songs like “Only a Girl” and “You Made Me a Woman”, and for the boys, there is a scene where the fairies shed their hooded cloaks to transform into their glittery outfits – were those animated topless fairies we saw? Maybe their magic powers left us with the power to imagine things.

Movie Rating:

(A cutesy fairy cartoon best enjoyed by young girls aged six to 12)

Review by John Li


. Dragon Hunters (2007)

. Space Chimps (2008)

. Happily N'ever After (2007)

. Open Season (2007)

. Hoodwinked (2006)

. Valiant (2005)

. Back to Gaya (2004)



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