- The Last Mimzy (2007) movie review: By way of his generally amusing fantasy adventure, New Line Cinema founder Robert Shaye shows that film executives can also be competent filmmakers. But there’s a downside: The movie is marred by countless plot holes and obnoxious product placement overuse.
The Last Mimzy movie review: New Line Cinema founder Robert Shaye has directed a surprisingly entertaining ‘family’ fantasy
The Last Mimzy may fail to qualify as the best “family” adventure film of the year, though its flaws are occasionally forgotten while we’re pulled into the film’s magical world.
This latest entry in the fantasy genre was directed by Robert Shaye, who happens to be the founder and co-chairman of New Line Cinema, and the man who green-lit the Lord of the Rings movies. The idea of a studio executive stepping behind the camera can be alarming, but in the case of The Last Mimzy Shaye has done a remarkable job.
Worldwide catastrophe must be averted
Based on the short story “Mimsy Were the Borogoves” by Henry Kuttner and C.L. Moore (under the pseudonym “Lewis Padgett”), The Last Mimzy follows siblings Noah and Emma Wilder (Chris O’Neil and Rhiannon Leigh Wryn) as they’re called upon by scientists from the distant future to help prevent the deterioration of human virtues and of the planet’s ecosystem.
While spending their Easter break at their parents’ beach house, Noah and Emma stumble upon a mysterious box. Inside, they find a stuffed rabbit (that’s Mimzy) and a couple of luminous rocks that will help them develop unique talents: Noah acquires the power of telekinesis, while his sister creates magical force fields by spinning the rocks.
Neither the kids nor their astounded parents (Timothy Hutton and Joely Richardson) have a clue about what’s going on, but Emma claims that her stuffed animal speaks to her about a forthcoming worldwide catastrophe that must be prevented at any cost.
A family that fights the government together…
Apart from its underlying message that today’s world is much too preoccupied with electronic devices, The Last Mimzy succeeds by emphasizing the importance of family relationships.
This becomes particularly evident in the way the Wilders handle the government’s sudden interest in their children’s inexplicable gift. They stick together no matter how big the threat.
Besides, as in the recent family fable Bridge to Terabithia, The Last Mimzy uses the children’s rapport with one another (both O’Neill and Wryn deliver solid performances) to urge us never to abandon our imagination.
Overabundance of plot holes & product placements
Now, despite its generally entertaining narrative, The Last Mimzy is marred by too many plot holes. The screenplay by Toby Emmerich and Bruce Joel Rubin leaves too many questions unanswered, especially in connection with Mimzy. The audience is never told how it really works, where the children’s powers come from, or what use they ultimately have.
Worse yet, the film’s messages are hindered by an overemphasis on product placement.
In sum: Its considerable flaws notwithstanding, The Last Mimzy is imaginative and fast-paced enough to amuse audiences who are willing to sit back, suspend disbelief, and enjoy the magic.
The Last Mimzy (2007)
Director: Robert Shaye.
Screenplay: Toby Emmerich & Bruce Joel Rubin.
Screen story by James V. Hart & Carol Skilken.
From the short story “Mimsy Were the Borogoves” by C. L. Moore & Henry Kuttner (both under the pseudonym Lewis Padgett).
Cast: Chris O’Neil. Rhiannon Leigh Wryn. Joely Richardson. Timothy Hutton. Rainn Wilson. Kathryn Hahn. Michael Clarke Duncan.
“The Last Mimzy Movie (2007): Flawed But Amusing Fantasy” review text © Franck Tabouring; excerpt, image captions, bullet point introduction, and notes/endnotes © Alt Film Guide.
“The Last Mimzy Movie (2007) Review” endnotes
Rhiannon Leigh Wryn and Timothy Hutton The Last Mimzy movie image: New Line Cinema.
“The Last Mimzy Movie (2007): Flawed But Amusing Fantasy” last updated in September 2021