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Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The Water Horse

Happy New Year! Hope everyone is safe at home.

This is my last day as a free woman. Tomorrow, I go back to work. So let me start the year with a mini movie review.

The Water Horse is what I would call charming. It moved slowly almost throughout the entire movie, lolling around the gorgeous WWII era Scottish countryside.

It has plenty of ahh moments, but I did take issue with some story logic flaws. Unfortunately, I can't elaborate because they could create spoilers. Let's just say that I thought some threads felt incomplete. I can't tell if some aspects were left out deliberately, but it raised my radar and that's not a good thing.

The Water Horse is about Angus, a boy who finds the egg of the mythical water horse; a creature whereby only one of its kind exists at one time. 'Caruso' grows rapidly and eventually has to be released into the loch.

Set during WWII, the Brits come in and billet at a Scottish estate tended by a pragmatic head housekeeper who's lost her husband in the war and her two children who are doing the best they can under the conditions of war. Angus is described (but never fully explained) as confused. This part needed more background. The kid didn't seem confused to me, but the mother seemed overly protective of him.

The war doesn't touch this part of Scotland and it's brought up in the movie. Basically they're there to keep a rich kid captain safe from the front. But when they think Caruso is a German submarine, it gives the Brits a reason to shoot their big guns.

Caruso, the water horse is impressive. At times you forget he's cgi. But the movie itself moves slowly, plodding along and leaving some important details out. All the real effort is placed at the end where the do or die scenario culminates. You cry, you cheer and you walk away feeling good…and hopeful that somewhere out there is another water horse.

The scenery is worth seeing this in the theater but this is fine as a rental. It's not a movie I'd like to pay full price only because the plot was so slow and open to plot holes. But it's a good family or date movie.