The Magic Pudding (2000)

dir. Karl Zwicky

Horrendous. It is just horrendous. The Magic Pudding is based on a beloved Australian children’s classic book, and one can only hope the source material isn’t as horrendous as the adaptation. The story is horrendous: a koala bear goes in search of his lost parents, only to encounter a magical pudding which can morph and regenerate, thereby potentially solving world hunger, although of course the koala and his new pirate and penguin friends don’t consider this for a second. The animation is horrendous: the pudding has a perpetual red-eyed frowny expression conveying either fury or chronic alcoholism, but he does match the generally shoddy look of everything else in the movie. The characterisation is horrendous: everyone changes motivation constantly, and no one does anything for a discernible reason. The songs are horrendous: tuneless shrieking and nonsensical lyrics, with respite only being offered when songs finish as abruptly as they begin (“It’s Worse than Weevils” is a particularly grating song which only clocks in at a total of 38 seconds, although 38 seconds of silence would have been far preferable). The resolution is horrendous: the koala and his parents don’t even recognise each other, until they spontaneously do – it truly makes no sense. There is no other word for it. The Magic Pudding is horrendous, horrendous, horrendous.

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