Tried as I might, I could not get into “Willow.”
Some of it comes down to timing; had I seen this at a much younger age, I could totally see myself getting swept up in this story of a dwarf named Willow (Warwick Davis) who must protect a baby from the evil Queen Bavmorda (Jean Marsh) who wishes to kill her.
He meets some other travelers along the way to help him, such as two Brownies, Franjean(Rick Overton) and Rool (Kevin Pollak), a ne’er do well swordsman Madmartigan (Val Kilmer) and Fin Raziel (Patricia Hayes) a good witch who has been transformed into a muskrat.
It’s a solid setup, a tale as old as time, but a lot of the kiddie elements, like any scenes with the Brownies or when the love potion goes wrong for Madmartigan, just fall flat to these adult eyes. And while I’ll give the filmmakers props for bucking the trend of the day and making the chosen one a girl, “Willow” still amounts to a story about a bunch of dudes (even the other women can’t act on their own until the men come along).
“Willow” tried its best to impress me, but sadly, I’m a little too old for a tale this simplistic.
Written by Bob Dolman
Directed by Ron Howard
Starring: Warwick Davis (Willow)
Val Kilmer (Madmartigan)