Video Review

Video Review: 'The Emperor's Nightingale' (1994)

MPAA Rating: Unrated
EW's GRADE
B

Details Movie Rated: Unrated; Genres: Animation, Sci-fi and Fantasy; With: Boris Karloff

Czech director Jiri Trnka was an early master of the stylized puppet animation later perfected in Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas, and The Emperor's Nightingale, an adaptation of a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, was state of the art 40 years ago. But that's a double-edged sword. On one hand, the character design is lovely, the animation is eerily lifelike, and the voice-over by Boris Karloff is flawless. But kids with MTV attention spans won't get the glacial storytelling, and parents will probably find the lack of any satiric edge equally off-putting. Nice to look at, though. B

Originally posted Nov 11, 1994 Published in issue #248 Nov 11, 1994 Order article reprints