Labyrinth (1986)

Genres - Fantasy  |   Sub-Genres - Fantasy Adventure, Children's Fantasy  |   Release Date - Jun 27, 1986 (USA)  |   Run Time - 101 min.  |   Countries - United Kingdom  |   MPAA Rating - PG
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Review by Andrea LeVasseur

A campy '80s fantasy, Labyrinth brings together some of the leaders in the genre to assemble a popular adventure tale. While executive produced by George Lucas, director Jim Henson provides his inventive Muppets, and former Monty Python member Terry Jones crafts witty and inventive side bits in the screenplay to color the standard formula. The special effects, makeup, and creatures are top-notch, all created before CGI technology, thus marking an end of an era for live-action fantasy films. Jennifer Connelly is not especially good as Sarah, although she does serve her purpose as the inventive dreamer for the Alice in Wonderland- or Wizard of Oz-style journey. The actor most notable is David Bowie as the villain Jareth, whose glam rock wig and revealing tights give a nod to his former alter ego Ziggy Stardust. He is quite possibly the high point of the film, contributing to songwriting and creating an alluring figure in Jareth that rightfully could be borne of a young girl's imagination. The musical score and production numbers are silly enough to firmly plant the movie in the '80s, but they also seem to add to the charm that is missing from Jim Henson's other Muppet fantasy The Dark Crystal.