My Little Pony: The Movie tells how the witch Hydia creates a monstrous purple ooze called the Smooze, and uses it to attack Dream Valley, where the little ponies live.
I watched this movie because I had been so pleasantly surprised by the quality of the recent series My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. If, I thought, the new series was so good, surely the older entries in the franchise couldn’t be too bad, either. Well, I’ll say it now: this movie did not live up to my (fairly low) expectations.
My Little Pony: The Movie opens with a fairly Disney-esque scene with some animals playing around in the receding snow, followed by the preparations for the spring festival. Then we are shown that Hydia is not at all pleased by all the cheeriness. The next part of the film is taken up by Hydia and her two incompetent daughters attenmpting to create the Smooze to cover up Dream Valley. Once they succeed, various ponies (and a few humans) go through some troubles seeking help, and they ultimately succeed in driving off the Smooze. Hooray.
Well, the plot’s far from complicated, but that’s okay for a children’s movie. The animation is mostly reasonably competent, too. But there are quite a few things that just don’t work. There are times when the animation indicates a character should be saying something with a lot of emotion and force, but the voice actors didn’t seem to get the message. But that’s not the worst part: the worst sin is that the voices of the characters are mostly the sort of weird inhuman voices that were so common in cartoons a couple of decades ago. I think we’ve mostly gotten away from that lately, but this film is from 1986, so we’re stuck with it.
The songs aren’t great, but they’re acceptable. They don’t inspire me to purchase a soundtrack or anything. Hydia’s song at the beginning, encouraging her daughters to be evil witches like the rest of the family is actually kind of fun.
Speaking of Hydia: what’s up with her? She has really no concern for her daughters’ safety–they’re nearly killed several times in this movie, and no one makes any mention of it. It’s weird.
In the interest of comparing unlike films: this is kind of like Edward Scissorhands in that it shows that people (or, in this case, ponies) are horrible. Poor Lickety Split is rather ill-used by the others, and when Spike offers to go with her so she needn’t go it alone, she hits him hard enough to send him flying into a wall. People are awful and cruel, whether they have four legs or two. Okay, comparing it to Edward Scissorhands was a bit of a stretch, but I’ve got to keep myself amused somehow.
Well, the film is basically a mediocre children’s movie. It’s not exactly the worst movie I’ve ever seen or anything, but it’s not a movie I’d care to watch again. Maybe kids will find it more engaging. I’d caution you not to buy it merely on the strength of the more recent TV series, though.