The Princess and The Goblin Review

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What we have here is your bog-standard "delightful" fairy tale fare: princess in a castle; fluffy royal pet that gets into mischief (i.e., stumbles across secret doors, enchanted glades and so on); malevolent goblins festering below ground; a spell-weaving godmother (or in this case grandmother); and a lad of honest peasant stock, who, initially scorned as a working-class oik, eventually saves the day, castle, kingdom, princess, etc.

There are so few surprises in either the tale or its telling that if you don't count a Goblin Prince with Rik Mayall's voice and a penchant for flamboyant nose-picking there's nothing to suggest this cartoon was made in 1992 and not 1962, which in the wake of Beauty And The Beast does it few favours, as it has been years since youngsters or their old folks have been interested in classic bedtime stories played straight.

This movie is a long way removed from Disney's Oscar-winner in terms of style and presentation, and where it lets itself down is by remaining too true to the original 19th Century text - the princess' relentless naivety will irritate anybody who has watched Grange Hill, and the doe-eyed drawings are uncomfortably My Little Ponyish. As such, it will only appeal to the very young.