Barbie: A Fairy Secret was greatly anticipated by certain little girls in our house. I’m just glad we have a policy to avoid buying movies until we preview them through Netflix first. Even though FireBird said she loved it, I felt it was a great disappointment. In the past I’ve had many mixed feelings about the whole Barbie craze, but for the most part some of the previous movies that we’ve seen have been pretty well done. It seems like a lot of my concerns were realized in A Fairy Secret. Really there was only one thing that was good about the whole movie – the buried “moral of the story” that forgiveness and friendship is a powerful form of love. But it almost seemed a bit too little, too late. The movie was filled with negative behaviors like envy, poor sportsmanship, and materialism. And instead of rising above the behavior, Barbie gets caught up in it just as much as the others. Ken is portrayed as clueless and small minded and the fairies were shallow and vain. One fairy’s strength of power was based on how cool her shoes were. To make it worse, the ending shows Barbie and her once rival-now best friend unable to keep the Fairy’s secret. Despite all they’d accomplished and despite seeing how destructive vanity and envy were, their own personal career and image were more important then a group of people. Frankly these aren’t messages I want my girls (or boys for that matter) to dwell on. I suppose Barbie: A Fairy Secret did have one other good quality…it sparked a good discussion about these things with my girls. But I wouldn’t recommend the movie for anyone.
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader (2008) was always my favorite story in the Narnia Chronicles, so you can imagine my anticipation for seeing this movie. Even though I do think the movie was very well done, and as in the previous two movies, the special effects were amazing, there is one small thing that bugged me. Okay – 2 things. For one, I think Lucy was overdone in the “look grown up” department. There’s a fine line that I think the move-makers crossed. She almost looked like a teen dressing up in mom’s clothes or something. The other thing that I had a hard time with was that Eustace did not mesh with the image I had of him in my own mind. I know that seems silly, but it’s the way I am I guess. There is a bit of a “word of warning” I should mention. Just like the last movie, this one doesn’t follow the book all that closely…and I suppose I should be a bit upset about this…but who really expects movies made from books to actually follow the books? After being burned and disappointed a few times in the past, I now try to view each movie for it’s own merits. When one actually follows a book I love, I take that as a bonus. In the case of The Voyage of The Dawn Treader, I enjoyed the movie for what it was.