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Willow
Year:
1988
Country:
USA
Genre:
Drama, Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Romance, Comedy
IMDB rating:
7.3
Director:
Ron Howard
Val Kilmer as Madmartigan
Warwick Davis as Willow Ufgood
Jean Marsh as Queen Bavmorda
Patricia Hayes as Fin Raziel
Billy Barty as High Aldwin
Pat Roach as Gen. Kael
Gavan O'Herlihy as Airk Thaughbaer
David Steinberg as Meegosh
Phil Fondacaro as Vohnkar
Tony Cox as Vohnkar Warrior
Robert Gillibrand as Vohnkar Warrior
Mark Northover as Burglekutt
Kevin Pollak as Rool
Storyline: A baby girl is discovered in a river by Ranon and Mims, the children of Willow Ufgood, a dwarf farmer and magician and the baby girl is taken into the care of Willow's family. But when a terrifying dog-like creature attacks Willow's village, whilst tracking down the baby. Willow consults the village council and the wizard The High Aldwin. The High Aldwin gives Willow a task and Willow leaves the village and embarks on the task to give the baby girl to a responsible person. But Willow soon learns the baby is Elora Danan, the baby girl destined to bring about the downfall of the evil sorceress Queen Bavmorda. Joined by his allies: swordsman Madmartigan, sorceress Fin Raziel and the Brownies Franjean and Rool, Willow takes it upon himself to protect Elora from Queen Bavmorda, who intends to kill Elora and prevent Elora from fulfilling her destiny. And Willow and his allies are pursued by Queen Bavmorda's daughter Sorsha and the evil commander of Queen Bavmorda's army General Kael, whom ... Written by Dan Williams
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Reviews
Fantastic
Versatility is the key to this movie. You can watch it with the kids, by yourself, or with the guys(for some reason us men find midgets intriguing). You've got elements of humor, adventure, and suspense that are unparalleled by most movies of today's time.

Made back in the 80s this movie exhibits special effects with an element of fantasy. As far as fantasy movies go, this movie was not surpassed until the release of Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring. George Lucas again displays brilliance in another genre of movies. This movie achieved for fantasy what Indiana Jones did for Action/Adventure and Star Wars did for Sci-Fi.

A must see!
2005-12-07
great!
This is one of the best fantasy/adventure movies ever made. I have seen this movie so many times I know the whole thing off by heart and I could watch it again right now and still enjoy it as much as I did the first time I watched it. For a movie to achieve this I think it must be truly great.
1998-11-25
good movie
i like this movies story, its very harmless, and easy to watch. most fantasy movies are hard to catch on to, while this one is very easy to grasp and watch. there is nothing too lewd about this movie to make it where you would want to hide the young ones. even as an older viewer, i find that there are many parts to this movie that are good simple fun. Ron howard and george lucas definitely need to make more films like this, unlike lucas's starwars Christmas special (lemon). each role seems to be so perfectly filled in this movie that its almost like the story was written to be acted by the people that were selected for the parts that they filled
2006-03-03
Willow: "the" epic fantasy of the 1980's
Plot: Willow Ufgood is a Nelwyn (if you know what a Hobbit is you'll understand) a member of a dwarf race in a magical fantasy realm that looks, interestingly enough, a lot like New Zealand). He comes across a special baby, Elora Dannen, the heiress to the throne of the land by prophecy. This spells bad news for the wicked Empress Barmovda, who took over the realm through violence and black magic. Her rival, the good witch Raziel was banished and she has a ton of evil minions including wild pigs, a skull-masked General and a great army. Secure in her power, she feels all it will take is to find the baby Elora and destroy her. But Willow, a rebel named Mad Martigan and the wild warrior daughter of Bavmorda herself, will team up with Raziel to save the day. Willow's confrontation with Bavmorda results in goodness' triumph.

I've seen Willow two times. The first viewing was as a child of the 1980's, when Willow would show up on television, usually on a Saturday night on either basic TV's Channel 13 (back then called "Very Independent", and would also air other children's classic fantasies of the 80's like "The Never Ending Story" from '84 and "Excalibur" from '81) and or Channel 5 now known as the WB. Willow was larger than life, a huge epic, as I recall and everything about it was pure magic adventure.

Basically, it was the Lord of the Rings of the 1980's, and no other fantasy movie of the decade topped Willow. It was unbelievable. I still have strong feelings about this movie connected to the first viewing as a child and this is always the case with children who grew up on adventure fantasy films of the 80's. Everything was like something as epic as the Bible - a child with a destiny who floats down a river on a basket like the baby Moses,an evil Queen and Sorcereress who wants to keep her power from being replaced, a dwarf with a heart of gold and courage, magic spells,beautiful locations, evil characters (the skull-masked General Kael was especially frightening). Being a child, and a sensitive one, certain scenes were violent, scary, beautiful and awe-inspiring. The fairy queen Cherlindrea, who manifests herself to Willow in the forest was a very memorable scene. There were many things I did not understand about the film, particularly the importance of the quest to save the baby, and the grown-up dialog went beyond my understanding. The movie, too, was too long and long-winded for a child to fully pay attention. The battle outside Queen Bavmorda's castle, her evil ritual and her fantastic death (that cloud of red smoke) was all very intense the first time I saw it.

The second viewing was as an adult, I hadn't seen it in years, not since probably 1989. I'm a girl so I enjoy romance and adventure films so I have a fondness for the fantasy genre. I sincerely think Willow is one of the best fantasy films of the 80's. It was very special and ahead of its time. Sure, I can be cynical and analytical about it now. The script is intelligently written but the characters are very one-dimensional, underdeveloped and lacking any real complexity. It's just black-and-white in terms of who is good and who is evil. Bavmorda (Jean Marsh) is pure evil as she is a "bad witch" as opposed to a good "witch" like her rival Raziel (Patricia Hayes). They don't explain just how Bavmorda took over the land and the extent of her evil. Obviously she is unpopular with her own countrymen and she ruled the land with an iron fist like a tyrant. The baby Elora Danan is considered special and magical but there is no hint of magic in her (she would not do one little magic trick) and throughout the movie she just makes cute faces and needs rescuing all the time. Willow, the hero of the film, seems to take second chair when Val Kilmer's character Madmartigan, enters the movie and soon becomes the sword-wielding, paperback novel romantic hero (complete with long Indian-style hair and shirt open to reveal his chest) who can really fight. Sorsha (Joanne Whalley) is the worst character in the film. There is no real conflict in her when she betrays her mother Bavmorda and falls for Madmartigan and joins the good guys. Jean Marsh' Bavmorda is also flat and her scenes could have been extended so that we can see just how wicked she really is. It seems like they toned down her character so as not to be too frightening. Willow is also too much like a Hobbit and Bavmorda is evil without any depth. So, yes, the film has its flaws, these flaws being in the story (apparently there was lots of back story but Ron Howard and Lucas did not want the film to be longer than standard movie time). Both Howard and Lucas did this film because it was their retaliation at their denial of buying the movie rights to Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. This is their alternative to Tolkien, a story so right for the late 80's, with special effects and computer graphics, then in its infancy, used sparingly and yet beautifully, never killing the story and in fact appropriately enhancing the action adventure. Today's fantasy movies contain far too many special effects and CG effects that they completely take over the story. Willow is an example of a story that can be told through good acting, fine script, great cinematography and great music (James Horner's second fantasy movie score; his first was Krull in '83). This is a movie that you can escape into. It is perfect in every sense and no fantasy movies made today can compare to Willow.
2008-05-28
A great epic fantasy adventure
This is a great epic fantasy with all the right ingredients:marvelous special effects, great battles scenes, humor and unexpected romance!
1999-03-28
The myth-based story
Author's Predicament: Let's begin to look at this film by focusing on the author's predicament. Say you're faced with the task of writing this script. What do you think would be the great difficulty that you'd have to overcome? Clearly these writers are trying to hit all the myth elements. But getting all the elements in isn't as difficult as making those elements meaningful for a modern audience. Especially an audience that has been inundated with myth-based films. It's one thing to know the structure of the myth story. It's another thing to make it unique and subtle.

To see if the writers are able to meet this challenge, let's begin at the structural end point. Is there a self-revelation in this script? The main character, Willow, learns to be a sorcerer. He learns that he has power and he has to follow his instincts. These are big words. Power. Instincts. Sorcerer.

A big question when you're looking at a self-revelation is, what does it mean? What am I going to take from this? How will it have an impact on me? And having a character say, "I believe in myself now. I am a sorcerer and am at one with the world of power," sounds good, but may not mean anything.

This is one of the key problems of the myth story. Because you're dealing in the big concepts, the concepts often have the form of meaning, but not necessarily any content.

Another problem with this self-revelation is that it doesn't seem to be moral. When the hero says he is now a sorcerer and understands the ways of power, what does that have to do with how he acts toward other people? That isn't to say that the hero doesn't have a moral need. We don't know yet. But in and of itself, his self-revelation is not moral.

Let's go back to the beginning and see how this story works.

Ghost: We start off with a kind of ghost. There is an evil queen and a newborn baby who is supposed to cause the end of the queen's reign. That immediately raises a question. How is this baby going to cause the overthrow of the queen? And the second question: why do we care? This refers to the stakes of the story, and you better be very clear about the stakes. Why should the audience care about the consequences? What will be the effect if this happens or if it doesn't happen? You have to provide details.

Problem/Need: First , Willow's got a baby at his doorstep he doesn't want to deal with. That is a problem. The community is a bit oppressive. Willow seems to owe a debt to the mayor. So he's got to get his crop in.

What about his need? What is missing inside of this man? Possibly courage, but that's not established up front. He really wants some position, and it's clear that he hasn't been all that confident in the past. He needs to prove himself. That's a psychological need. It's not all that well-defined, unfortunately. Because, again, what does it mean not to be able to be a sorcerer, or not to believe in whatever it takes to be a sorcerer? Is there a moral need established at the beginning of this story? There is a suggestion of a moral need when he is reluctant to take care of the baby that has been placed on his doorstep. But that doesn't really work as a deep moral flaw. Willow seems to be a pretty good guy. It's the town that has the moral problem because it's oppressive, especially the mayor.

By the way, when I first saw the woman put the baby in the basket, I laughed out loud. This being Lucas we're going to steal from every popular story in history. But the Moses trick is too obvious, and it's the first sign that this story is going to suffer from Myth 101-paint-by-numbers disease. Myth works best as a story structure when it is under the surface. This film hits you over the top of the head with it.

Desire: First and foremost, Willow wants to be the sorcerer's apprentice. But that desire doesn't carry all the way through the story. In fact, it ends pretty quickly. He fails. That's how they establish that he doesn't have faith in himself.

So what's his next desire line? He wants to get rid of the baby, but in a proper way. He wants to take this child to the crossroads to protect his village. Now we've got a a problem there. This is not a personal desire. "Here is a strange baby. I must take him to the crossroads because the village says I must." Whenever you don't have a personal desire, your story is going to be considerably weaker. I'm sure the writer knew this problem. So after Willow gets rid of the baby the first time, the writer heightens the stakes. First, Willow finds out the baby was kidnapped. And the woman in white comes down. The kind helper from fairy tales. The woman in white gives him a choice. You can leave this baby, but if you do, the queen will take over, your village will be in danger and your children will suffer. So there's an attempt to make it a more personal desire by couching it in terms of his children. But it's still an abstraction because the consequences have been stated but not shown.

Another problem with myth-based stories is that the desire line is not based on the hero's choice. By saying that it is your destiny to do this, even though it's presented as a choice, it really isn't one.

To finish reading this review and to find others, please visit http://www.truby.com/im_willow.html
2010-01-08
Fantastical and Flighty, it Stops Well Short of Casting Any Real Magic
I hadn't seen this in almost twenty years, and that's probably for the best. Since it's very clearly postured as a children's movie, I can't dock too many points if it's overly silly, hokey and naive, but I do suddenly feel quite sorry for dragging my folks out to see it all those summers ago. Simply put, it's not one of those kid's movies that parents will be surprised to enjoy just as much as their little ones. Val Kilmer and Warwick Davis have a strange sort of charm that manages to shine through the wooden dialog and dated special effects, and the plot has the optimistic, adventurous core of a classic fairy tale, so it's not like there's a total lack of positives. But it also borrows heavily from Tolkien, paling badly by comparison, and it pushes the limits of suspended disbelief too far on more than one occasion. George Lucas's influence is all over the screen, too, from the excessively playful tone to the heavy-handed wipe transitions and stiff, over-proper repartee. If you've ever wondered what a Hobbit might look like on Endor, this is your ticket.
2012-03-05
Likable collaboration between Lucas and Howard.
Based on a story by George Lucas, this lively fantasy adventure is certain to appeal to kids and those genre fans looking to be transported to a different time and place. A well chosen cast acquits themselves well, with young Warwick Davis, who'd made his breakthrough as the Ewok Wicket in "Return of the Jedi", placed front and centre. Davis plays the title role, a little person (or Nelwyn, as they're referred to in this universe) who discovers and protects a Daikini (or big person) baby; said baby has been prophesied to bring about the downfall of an evil queen, Bavmorda (Jean Marsh). Willow grows to love the baby and accept his mission to deliver the baby to safety, acquiring some companions on his way. Thieving sword master Madmartigan (Val Kilmer) is one, tiny imps Rool (Kevin Pollak) and Franjean (Rick Overton) are others.

Extremely well shot in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio by Adrian Biddle, this marked a truly ambitious effort for director Ron Howard, who hadn't done anything of this scope before. He and his crew create some mighty fine atmosphere throughout. Filmed both in the studio and on breathtaking locations in England, Wales, and New Zealand, this carries us from one environment to another - forests, snowy mountains, desolate islands. The special effects are nicely done. James Horner composes a fine score in the tradition of what John Williams had done for Lucas's "Star Wars" series. There's plenty of comedy relief, not just from the Rool and Franjean characters but the rascally Madmartigan as well. So it should keep the kids laughing as often as it enchants them. It does get fairly intense at times, so there might be times when they get scared.

The endearing Davis does a respectable job of being the heart and soul of the movie, and Kilmer, Pollak, and Overton are all pretty funny. Joanne Whalley (who would go on to marry Kilmer) plays the queens' daughter / henchwoman, Patricia Hayes is a sorceress who's trapped in the form of various animals for much of the story, Billy Barty is an old wizard, Pat Roach the Darth Vader like character General Kael, Gavan O'Herlihy is the proud warrior Airk, and Phil Fondacaro, Tony Cox, and Mark Northover play members of Willow's village.

Fans of other fantasy fare like "The NeverEnding Story", "Krull", and "Legend" should take to this one as well. It provides ample entertainment for a well paced 126 minutes.

Seven out of 10.
2013-07-13
The movie which Peter JACKSON get his inspiration
This movie has got everything that an adventure, fantasy and a quest movie must have. If you have really liked the LOTR I would suggest you to watch it as well. Have fun Muslum Klass Yildiz..

This movie has got everything that an adventure, fantasy and a quest movie must have. If you have really liked the LOTR I would suggest you to watch it as well. Have fun Muslum Klass Yildiz..

This movie has got everything that an adventure, fantasy and a quest movie must have. If you have really liked the LOTR I would suggest you to watch it as well. Have fun Muslum Klass Yildiz..

This movie ...
2006-05-07
I don't love Sorscha, she kicked me in the face!
The word "Tolkienesque" popped up a lot in the other reviews, I would like to inject, if I may, that ALL contemporary fantasy is Tolkienesque. The whole concept of the fantasy genre is blatant plagery of Tolkien with the names changed to protect the guilty. Not that I'm a huge Tolkien fan, and I've read and enjoyed not a few fantasy books, it's just that I feel the word Fantasy can be easily switched with Tolkienesque with no loss of meaning. Now on to the midgets. Willow is a pretty kickass movie. Val Kilmer is a drunken, lecherous, arrogant brawler, and Madmartigan is a fun character too. There are some great one liners in this movie, I find it to be endlessy quotable. Also, it's got multi-generational appeal. Kids and adults can watch and enjoy this, for completely different reasons. I have to say I love midgets. After Rainbow Motel, this is the best midget movie I've ever seen. It beat out Jedi because the midgets had to wear little bear suits. I asked a midget if he preferred to be called a Nellwyn, and, boy did I get a fierce shin-thrashing. A lot of people thought the Brownies were annoying...they are, but Kevin Pollack makes it funny at the same time. Billy Barty! Billy Barty is in it. Women were represented a lot stronger here than in the normal fantasy movie genre. The evil heavy Bavmorda is a chick, (I think), the baby savior, the possum-crow-goat lady, and Joanne Whalley all have a strong presence in the film. However the goat-possum-anteater lady had an annoying voice as an animal, but that added to the quotability of anything she said. "Willowwww use the waaaandd." Sadly we also have baby-puke and troll-poop, images I don't need to see in movies, but it's a minor complaint. All in all, Willow is a movie that holds up, thanks to midgets. Peace.
2000-12-03
Download Drama, Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Romance, Comedy Willow movie USA with english subtitles DVD-rip mpeg4 avi & mp4, download Willow (1988) 1080p h264 mkv, iPhone xvid mov & mpeg4 mp4, Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley , Warwick Davis, Jean Marsh, Patricia Hayes, Billy Barty, Pat Roach, Gavan O'Herlihy, David Steinberg, Phil Fondacaro, Tony Cox, Robert Gillibrand, Mark Northover, Kevin Pollak, Rick Overton.
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