Thomas & The Magic Railroad

MPAA Rating: G

Entertainment: +2

Content: +2 1/2

Young fans of "Thomas the Tank Engine" and "Shining Time Station" on television and video will enjoy the new adventures of their imaginary friends from the land of talking trains. Thomas (voice of Eddie Glen) and other talking steam engines are faced with becoming extinct because of newcomer, villainous Diesel 10 and his two cohorts, Splatter and Splotch. Mr. Conductor (Alec Baldwin) can travel between the fantasy land of talking trains on the island of Sodor and the reality of Shining Time Station by using his sparkling magic gold dust. Just as Mr. Conductor sets out to save Thomas the Tank Engine and friends, he loses his magic "sparkle." Meanwhile, 12-year-old Lily (Mara Wilson) comes to visit her grandfather (Peter Fonda), who has a secret that holds the key to saving the talking trains. The combination of live actors, animated characters, humor and adventure makes THOMAS AND THE MAGIC RAILROAD a delight for young children and their parents. However, youngsters under age 5 may find even 89 minutes a long time to sit still.

Magic is a major ingredient in this fantasy, but it's used to spark children's imagination rather than to conjure up evil spirits or witches' spells. It also reminds us all that occasional indulging in fantasy, like Mary Poppins' spoonful of sugar, brightens our outlook when we're feeling down. And THOMAS is filled with wholesome lessons for young audiences. Mr. Conductor personifies the importance of being responsible and reliable, while his cousin, Mr. C. Junior (Michael E. Rodgers) shows that laziness and irresponsibility can have serious consequences. Thomas and his steam engine friends prove that little engines can do big things as they brave their way through scary, dark routes to save a beautiful "Lady" train. And, through his granddaughter's love, a lonely grandfather quits dwelling on past mistakes. Action scenes include foolish Mr. C. Junior falling from a whirling windmill; Mr. Conductor tossed from a moving train, and a train falling from a collapsing bridge. However, the only injuries are hurt pride. With no foul language or sexually suggestive content, THOMAS AND THE MAGIC RAILROAD can be an entertaining and educational experience for children who understand the difference between the world of make-believe and reality.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Destination Films, 1401 Ocean Ave., Ste. 301, Santa Monica, CA 90401

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: None

Profanity: None

Violence: Few times - Moderate, no injuries (man falls from windmill, man tossed from train, runaway train, train falls from bridge, trains make scary trip through dark forest)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: None

Other: Magic dust used throughout; girl renews her grandfather's love for others; laziness and irresponsibility has negative consequences; steam engines show bravery to help another in trouble

Running Time: 89 minutes
Intended Audience: Children 4 to 7

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