Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium movie poster
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Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium movie poster

Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium Movie Review

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Long before the movie was released, my brother read the screenplay of Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium and was quite excited for the film's release. However, upon seeing the previews for the film, he expressed dismay at what looked like some major alterations to the movie. I can't remember exactly what he said, but having now watched the film myself, I can say with certainty that whatever potential he saw in the screenplay never made it to the big screen.

Mr. Magorium is a dull, unimaginative film that fails to capture one's attention. Despite starring Dustin Hoffman and Natalie Portman, there's nothing vibrant about this story, and it so easily could have been. In fact, so little of the movie engaged me that I really don't remember anything about it.

Seriously. I watched the movie a month ago and subsequently forgot to write a review about it - traveling to Peru for ten days, and then Boston shortly thereafter, did not help. Furthermore, I had forgotten that I had even watched the movie, and now I don't even remember much of the events that unfold within. I remember that the movie is about a magical toy store whose owner, Mr. Magorium, has been alive for centuries. When he decides that it is his time to pass on, he hires an accountant (Jason Bateman) to clean up his store's finances in preparation for handing ownership over to his assistant, played by Natalie Portman. Once the store finds out, however, it - meaning the store itself - starts acting really weird.

I'll admit that I was doing other work while watching Mr. Magorium, but when a good movie is playing, I tend to get drawn to the screen. For instance, I'm watching In the Valley of Elah while writing this review, but as I type I still know exactly what's happening in that movie. Mr. Magorium doesn't resonate at all. It's as if I spent an hour and a half watching the movie and there wasn't a single memorable moment in the entire picture.

In reality, there is nothing terrible about Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium other than it is bland and unremarkable, but for a movie with a title like that, it should be anything but.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.

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