This morning after breakfast I spent what felt like an eternity trying to get on Netflix. Our Apple TV remote is busted and you have to touch it in just the right spot with your fingernail to get it to work. Oh, and it can only go down not up. It’s like hacking into DNC’s email just trying to get past parental controls. It is possible, but it takes someone that really knows what they are doing.
Anyway once we were logged in I was pleasantly surprised to see that The Little Prince was now available for streaming. All 5 of us (myself and 4 kids ages 8 months to 8 years) piled onto the couch and started the program. I was not expecting a full length major motion picture so I was amazed. Wow, I felt like I was watching a pixar short, except it wasn’t short.
The original French story is interwoven into a more modern story and they tie it all together nicely in my opinion.
It’s hard to take a classic and turn into a newly interpreted form of art. Most people that are book readers always agree that the book was better than the movie and that’s probably true here. However, I still loved it. They separated the original aspects from the book via stop motion animation while the rest was computer animation (both media were phenomenal). It was very artistic.
If you read the book it is going to make a lot more sense, but myself and my oldest were the only one who had and the younger ones enjoyed it just as much as we did. In fact kids are a lot more open to nontraditional animations and story lines than adults are. That’s actually a big part of the whole theme in The Little Prince.
My thoughts were this is a kind of weird, but I like it. Weird like Tale of Despereaux (which we own), or The Never Ending Story, or Up, or BFG (okay, I haven’t seen BFG yet, but my son read the book and loved it).If you do not like those books/movies you probably won’t be into this one.
Here are a couple things for parents to be aware of in The Little Prince. Keep in mind there may be some spoilers.
It is a little creepy. There are some very dark characters and intense moments which include a child’s involvement.
I hate to be that mom, but part of what should have been sweet made me uneasy. The main character is a little girl (voiced by Mackenzie Foy) and she sneaks off to hang out with an old man (the aviator voiced by Jeff Bridges). They spend long periods of time in his house. She rides in a car with him without her mom’s permission and he doesn’t even have a license. The cops catch him and she is in trouble for lying, but the mom (voiced by Rachel McAdams) is kind of the bad guy here and the old man is the lovable good guy. I just told my kids “This movie is pretend and it’s fun, but in REAL life you never go hang out with old men or anyone without mom and dad’s permission. It’s never a good idea to be sneaky no matter how fun. In real life that would be extremely dangerous.”
The good news though is the movie, like the book, has a powerful message. Even for parents it’s a message of focusing on what’s really important in life instead of only what is practical. It’s about having an imagination and dreaming!
It is based off of French book that is world renowned and the film is also originally foreign which I think makes it a cultural and educational experience. I love how it ends with Fin instead of The end.
My favorite part though and *spoiler alert* for those who haven’t seen it, is when the mean boss looks at the prince (voiced by Paul Rudd) and he says
“I think it’s time you get back to work my little failure.”
The Prince who has lost his way pauses and then musters up the courage to stand up to the business man and says
“I am not a failure. I’m The Little Prince.” The business men laugh and call him hopeless and then the little prince declares
“I’m not hopeless. I’m hopeful. That’s right I’m full of hope.” And his countenance changes as he reclaims his true identity.
I’m telling you right there in the living room in my pjs I get all pentecostal and I quietly clap and say “Amen. Amen, that’s right.” I had tears in my eyes and prayed that my children were hearing the same message that I was.
If nothing else I was just impressed with Netflix. For $9.99 a month my family can watch a high quality movie in our pajamas the moment it is released. An experience that before would have cost us at least 80 bucks and a trip to the theater (not that a trip to theater isn’t fun too, but it’s nice to have options).
The Little Prince was a charming, sweet, and inspiring movie. For us it was a real treat.