The Last Unicorn
The Last Unicorn (1982) (US, UK, Japan, West Germany) This weekend (5/26/16) we will be meeting our old friend Peter Beagle at Balticon 50 in Baltimore. We are looking forward to it, even though Peter is involved in some awful litigation with his former manager who seems to have stolen all his money and his copyrights. It might be a little awkward, as I used to be friends with the former manager. I won’t get into all that, and we don’t intend to bring the subject up with Peter.
Although he has written many things, this novel is his chief claim to fame. I have to confess that I’ve never read it, but we did find a copy of the novel along with some other fiction, and hope to get it signed.
(Update, 6/6/16) We had a terrific Balticon 50, maybe my best convention ever, and got to spend a lot of time with Peter! He was as sweet and gracious as he always is, and was a high point of the con.
Back to the movie … It is glorious to look at, reminding me of Japanese anime. It was no surprise to see the end credits were mostly Japanese names. The story is simple, a fable that all ages could probably enjoy. Now I’m going to have to read it. The voice cast is terrific, with Mia Farrow as the unicorn, and Alan Arkin, Jeff Bridges, Tammy Grimes, Robert Klein, Angela Lansbury, Christopher Lee, Keenan Wynn, and the great Paul Frees, who did hundreds of voices for the great Stan Freberg.
A live-action remake has been in development hell for many years. This is a case where I think a remake might actually be a good idea. Not because there is anything wrong with this movie, but because it could be really great with today’s technology.