As a parent, I would not allow my kids to watch this as one of the characters said the word "damn." Seriously, this is supposed to be a kid/family movie.
The movie literally starts out with the cat purposefully getting abandoned by its owners - they throw a ball out of the car, wait for the cat to get it, and then drive away. Even though that's a terrible way to start a movie, you can almost get past it because the youngest kids won't realize that's what happened. Then for the majority of the movie the poor cat, Thunder, is constantly being threatened that it is going to die. The rabbit Jack and the nephew David, I think, are constantly saying it's going to die. The movie sends horrible messages to young kids like if you get too old your nephew is going to trick you into signing power of attorney over to him and he'll put you in an old folks home, sell your house, and/or demolish the house.The nephew is constantly saying that DAMN cat. I don't know about you but I don't want young kids, my niece is 5 and I watched it with her, hearing DAMN being constantly said. Also, the nephew is straight up trying to kill Thunder. Like not in the playful cartoon way. He is literally chasing him around the house shooting a shot gun at him. Very, very realistic. And when that doesn't work, he steals a wrecking ball and starts to demolish the house! I found this movie on the kids section on Netflix. This is no way a suitable movie for kids. I trust the kids section to have appopriate content for my nieces. I also rely on it in when I teach younger students and there is no way I could show them this movie. It is too dark and violent with inappropriate language to show any kid!
Not perfect and could have been better, but it's a good, colourful and fun film and one of nWaves' better efforts.Story-wise, The House of Magic is somewhat standard fare and a few parts feel over-familiar and well-worn. It also slightly runs out of gas towards the end, becoming a little over the top and not as crisp pacing-wise as the rest of the film. Some people may also be disappointed by the lack of emotional resonance and depth.The animation however is wonderful (in 2D and 3D), the colours are vibrant and rich, there is so much detail and inventiveness in the backgrounds and the characters are well-modelled, cute but not overly-so. The magic scenes are very imaginatively animated too and the gizmos are cool. The House of Magic also boasts a catchy and whimsical soundtrack that compliments the film's mood ideally, and the pacing mostly is very lively in a film that can hardly be classed as 'boring'. The polished script is very high in zany wit, fun and charm, with some occasional dark weirdness that doesn't get in the way of the overall tone of the film and a whimsical quaint charm.While the story may not be exceptional, it is a long way from a disaster either, livened by some set pieces that are both fun and scary and some eye-popping spectacle for the magic and gizmos. The message is well-intended and sweet, and delivered in a way that doesn't preach. The characters are all cute and engaging, their likable personalities and the charming and entertaining interaction between them more than compensating for the lack of depth. The voice acting is strong.All in all, has some imperfections in the story but is mostly a very entertaining bag of tricks with a lot of great merits. 7/10 Bethany Cox
In too many ways, the Hollywood animation industry has ruined the market for everyone else. Disney and Pixar are leading a pack – DreamWorks, Fox, Sony – that have considerable resources at their disposal: they can easily afford to hire the best talents and bombard the entire world with adorable tie-in merchandise, even if the films they're producing aren't particularly good. It's a real shame, because it means that smaller, semi-independent efforts like The House Of Magic – an utterly charming French co-production – might too easily fall by the wayside.Abandoned by his owners, a cat sneaks into a mysterious mansion that the neighbourhood pets are convinced is haunted. In short order, our feline protagonist gains a new name (Thunder) and a new master – the genial, elderly Lawrence, a magician who lives happily in a magical world with his toys and mechanical gizmos. However, Thunder also gains a few enemies: Jack Rabbit and Maggie Mouse have no intention of allowing him to become part of Lawrence's act, even as Lawrence's nefarious nephew Danny plots to sell the house away.Plot-wise, there isn't anything particularly special about The House Of Magic. The story marches along in largely predictable fashion – the schemes cooked up by Thunder and his buddies aren't enormously innovative and the ending of the film is never in doubt. It's also the kind of movie in which moral complexities are easier to ignore than include, so don't expect many shades of grey in the characters of Thunder, Lawrence or Danny. Even Jack Rabbit, who proves a worthy, grouchy secondary antagonist to Thunder, is quickly forgotten in the film's action-packed ending.But it's all woven together to charming, sweet effect in the film, which benefits enormously from its excellent character design. It's easy to forgive the straightforward narrative when it's hurried along so effectively by the bouncy, adorable Thunder and his desire to be part of a family again. Lawrence's toys are also wonderfully realised: Edison, the most expressive walking lightbulb you'll ever see, is a standout, but the other supporting characters are lovingly developed too. Much of the joy in the film comes from watching them come together to thwart Danny's efforts.Taken all together, The House Of Magic has the feel of a well-worn bedtime story: it may occasionally feel like something you've seen a thousand times before, but it's also powered by a comfortable, familiar spark of magic – the kind that makes you feel right at home, wherever you might be.