Don Bluth/20th Century Fox/Blue Sky review: A Troll in Central Park

My opinion right after watching the film

My opinion right after watching the film is that it’s a horrible, cluttered mess. It was so unfathomably uncomfortable in so many different ways, from the content, to the characters, pacing, so on and so forth. I cannot even barely spit out the words for this meander-less mess.

Production

There is not much information to talk about regarding the production of this film. The production initially started in 1990, right after Rock-a-Doodle completed production. Don DeLuise and Charles Nelson Reily replaced Buddy Hackett and Robert Morley, after the latters recorded all of their dialogue. Due to production issues, they decided to release Thumbelina first in March of 1004, pushing this film to an October release.

Story

The film starts with some troll named Stanley (Dom DeLuise), who has a magical green thumb that brings plantlife to life. He is taken as a prisoner to Gnorga (Cloris Leachman) who is the Queen of Trolls, and who also hates flowers. The punishment for him was to turn him into stone, which he ends up escaping, and landing himself under a bridge.

We are then introduced to two little kids named Gus (Phillip Glasser) and Rosie (Tawny Sunshine Glover) are excited to go to Central Park, but their parents tell them that the can’t, since they need to go to a meeting. They go to the park themselves.

Rosie meets Stanley, and they of course become friends. She kisses him, ad the he starts acting like some hyper prepubescent child afterwards, which is extremely disturbing. They start to bond or whatever, and Gus sees his sister with the troll, which she refuses to believe for a while. Stanley then fights Gus for trying to “take his Rosie away from her”, and I get creepers vibes. For some reason, Gus and Stanley end up taping up his boat, and after Gnorga makes Gus cry a river, Stanley uses his thumb to extend the boat into a life-sized boat for them to escape.

A bunch of unmemorable-painful songs take place in a row, and they all take a nap. When Gus wakes up, he takes Rosie with him home, but Gnoga follows them to kidnap Rosie. She rubs it in Stanley’s face, but after Gus catches up to them, he refuses to help, causing Gus to call him a coward before trying to save his sister. It seems like she escapes, and falls right as her brother starts turning to a pig-looking troll, but is saved by Stanley. What’s par for the course is par for the course, though Stanley turns into stone, and everything is soon repaired.

This film is absolutely dreadful. I am beyond numb through the entire experience, but I guess this was after getting used to the trauma. So many cluttered and painful contrivances, obnoxiousness, weirdness, and a lack of logic. It’s weird that there’s so much filler, but everything still feels so cluttered.

Characters

What characters? Stanley is a more creepy and irritating Dom DeLuise, Gus is an aggressively obnoxious brat, Rosie is a plot device that;s only character trait is being cute, and the villain is beyond generic. At least they only have a few characters, so there is only a few of them that annoy me, and there’s no filler characters. Of course, none of that matters is none of your small cast is worth anything.

Animation

The animation is the only aspect that I am somewhat positive on, though I do think the colour palette and the differentiation between the foreground and background could be better. Anyways, the character designs are on-par with the other Bluth movies, and I didn’t notice (or care to notice) any of the

Music

Filler, bad, seamless, annoyingly obnoxious and monotone at the same time. Most of he music in the canon has not been special, and this one is pretty bad, since there really isn’t anything special or unique to give itself a good identity.

Reception at Release

When the film as released on, it made $71,368 million in North America, being his biggest flop to date. This was due to there being no promotion for the film, and having an extremely limited release, due to Warner Bros. not having any confidence in the film, which is still inexcusable to not promote it.

From the very few who watched and reviewed this movie, it was panned, with many feeling like it was sickeningly and obnoxiously sweet, and even Bluth later bashed the movie. It’s commonly referred to being his worst movie, which says a lot with its predecessors and successors.

Reception Today

To the few people that remember and know this film, it has an abhorrently horrible reputation, with many claiming that it is the worst Don Bluth move, and is one of the worst animated films ever. Even Bluth himself admitted that the film is awful, as it was the film that put his company DOWN UNDA for good.

Score

Story: 2/10

Characters: 2/10

Animation: 7/10

Music: 3/10

14/40 = 35%

3 thoughts on “Don Bluth/20th Century Fox/Blue Sky review: A Troll in Central Park

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