Opening 9 Aug 2007
Writing credits: Bruce Joel Rubin, Toby Emmerich, James V. Hart, Carol Skilken, Henry Kuttner
Principal actors: Chris O’Neal, Rhiannon Leigh Wryn, Joely Richardson, Timothy Hutton, Rainn Wilson
Founder of New Line Cinema, American Bob Shaye, returns to the director’s chair after a ten-year absence for The Last Mimzy. This screenplay is adapted from the short story All Mimzy Were the Borogroves by Lewis Padgett (a title taken from Lewis Carroll’s Jabberwocky).
Noah Wilder (Chris O’Neal) and his little sister Emma (Rhiannon Leigh Wryn) are playing on the beach at their summer home. Suddenly, something strange falls from the sky and lands in the water near them. Curious, Noah drags a heavy black box to shore and frantically opens it. Emma anxiously hopes the viewing takes place before their mom calls them to dinner. The box is covered with strange symbols and with a gentle touch it unexpectedly opens. There are witty toys inside the black configuration, and the children are mesmerized by their brilliant colors. The noises, especially from the little antique stuffed rabbit, are anything but normal. Emma retrieves the rabbit from a special casing inside the box, and her whole body lights up like a light bulb, which terrifies Noah. The kids are shocked back into reality as their mom calls. After supper, the kids secretly take their findings to the bedroom and continue to investigate the toys. It seems that by just touching the playthings, an exchange of strange powers has been given to them which allows them to understand the little rabbit, whose name is Mimzy and who explains that she is a messenger from the future who needs their help to save future generations from extinction through disease and pollution. They agree to help Mimzy, and their unexpected adventure spins out of control and puts the lives of loved ones in danger.
This children’s film has the potential to be the modern E.T., especially with the endearing characters and strength of the cast. Young children will not be able to wade through the vast range of themes from New Age spiritualism to government intervention to global warming. But adults will understand it. As a children’s story, the script should have gone with the “less is more” theory to make it a real classic. (Karen Pecota)