Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Future Of Film
The 100 Greatest Video Games
Robin Williams: The Big Interview
Kevin Feige:
My Movie Life

The Marvel supremo's pick of the flicks
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
Find out how here
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
PG
Cast
James McAvoy
Catherine McCormack
Julian Glover
Derek Jacobi.
Directors
Anders Ronnow-Klarlund.
Screenwriters
Anders Ronnow-Klarlund
Naja Marie Aidt.
Running Time
88 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Honeymoon
3 Star Empire Rating
Last Impresario, The
3 Star Empire Rating
I Origins
4 Star Empire Rating
Soul Boys Of The Western World
4 Star Empire Rating
What We Did On Our Holiday
3 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Two Days, One Night
5 Star Empire Rating
Some Like It Hot
5 Star Empire Rating
A Hard Day's Night
5 Star Empire Rating
Boyhood
5 Star Empire Rating

Strings


submit to reddit


Plot
In a world of puppets, where everyone is connected to a life-force in the sky through their strings, Prince Hal of Hebalon (McAvoy) vows to avenge the death of his father while his sinister uncle Nezo (Jacobi) plots to usurp the throne. While Hal quests among his enemies, Nezo takes over the city.


Review
With the possible exceptions of Thunderbirds and Team America, Strings is uniquely cast entirely with stiff-faced, mobile-eyed puppets. But the skill of the unseen puppeteers and director Anders Rønnow-Klarlund, plus a well-chosen voice cast, make the characters astonishingly expressive. The point is not to make wooden people seem lifelike, but to explore their existence as puppets, which leads to imaginative coups as lovers entwine strings and duellists snip at opponents’ cords with curved hooks.


Laid in a wholly imagined alternative world, the plot draws obviously on Shakespeare and fairy tale, but has a modern sensibility which pulls back from squabbles over thrones to show the deep-seated corruptions of this society — even the heroic Hal blithely accepts it as his right when he loses a hand and one is taken from a slave to replace it. Varying materials, from weathered wood to fine porcelain, convey the different stations of characters, and often scenes set in driving rain or drifting snow add elements of the real to a striking, ingenious picture.


Verdict
Just being innovative wouldn’t be enough — this has real dramatic sweep and the touch of magic that makes the best fantasies more than simple escapism.


Reviewed by

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Future Of Film: The Streaming Services Will Be Major Studios
(Or how Hollywood will have to start worrying about Netflix)

The Empire Podcast #129: Liam Neeson Interview
Plus Max Irons, Sam Claflin, Douglas Booth, Holliday Grainger and Jessica Brown Findlay drop by to talk The Riot Club

The Future Of Film: We'll Be Watching Films In Virtual Reality
Immerse cinema aims to become the must-have experience for the filmgoers of the future

The Future Of Film: Cinema Will Cross The Uncanny Valley
The future of VFX, from believable digital humans to underwater mocap

The Future Of Film: There Will Be Another Indie Golden Age
Independent producers are growing from micro-budgets to something a lot bigger

Empire's Epic Interstellar Subscribers' Cover
The countdown begins to Christopher Nolan's sci-fi masterpiece

Shut Up, World! Gary Busey Is Talking!
Strap yourselves in and meet a true Hollywood original.

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 6 Issues Of Empire For Only £15!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)