The 'Voyage of the Unicorn' is the story of the Aisling family - Professor Alan Aisling and his two daughters - the skeptical, bad-tempered Miranda and the dreamy, absent-minded Cassie. The girls weren't always like this though - they were once happy, sweet-natured girls - till their mother dies that is. Now the family live separate lives though they live in the same house - Alan who devotes his time to preaching his 'cresendo vides' (in believing one sees) philosophy at the university, which does not go down well with the Dean; Cassie who looses herself for days in her mother's portfolio and artwork, neglecting school, food and the real world in general; and Miranda, who has lost most of her faith in the human race and leds an unhappy, discontented life. All this is about to change however, when their home is attacked one night by a violent group of trolls, who are out to stop a prophesy concerning the Aisling family from coming true. While Miranda and Mr Aisling attempt to ward them off, Cassie is whisked off by an elf - Sebastian, and a dwarf - Malachi, down to the docks where their ship, The Unicorn waits. Followed closely by Miranda and Professor Aisling, all of them are spirited away to the Landscape of the Imagination on board the magical, beautiful ship which has been specially prepared for them.
It is there that they discover their destiny from King Oberon and Queen Titania on the Isle of Faerie - it has been prophesied that 'a man of learning, and two maidens gentle of spirit' will enter the realm to free the land of the evil scourge of trolls by finding and summoning the great dragon - and at the same time freeing heroes of old.
And so they're off on their journey - with Malachi and Sebastian, who is smitten with Miranda, and on the way they have run-ins with legendary creatures such as a sea serpent, trolls, mermaids, fairies, Medusa, the Sphinx, the Minotaur, ogres, unicorns and more. It is this voyage that the movie excells in - great costumes, set design, special effects, a beautiful soundtrack that includes the song - 'Faith precedes a Miracle', and good acting and story telling. Watch out for my favourite scenes - when Miranda subdues the sea serpent, when Cassie tames the unicorn and when Titania gives each member of the family special gifts, and special advice that only they can hear.
This is a very good movie - it's interesting, bright, colourful, well directed and acted throughout. Traditional creatures such as fairies are given a whole new look and it's a great family movie to all watch together. If you love fantasy and adventure then this movies for you.
However, one fault is that it ended rather abruptedly, and with far too many unanswered questions and loose ends. I wonder if perhaps I watched a cut version of this movie, as when I watched 'The Making of the Voyage of the Unicorn' there was a scene being filmed that featured the Sphinx in the interior of the ship which was definitly not on the movie I watched. I picked up on inconsistencies that - although they don't totally destroy viewing-pleasure - nag in your mind as though you've missed out on something. And cutting bits out of this movie which is about the individual's internal voyage as much as the physical journey is not doing it justice. My queries include -
How did they get home? - they all just seemed to wake up the next day with no real recollections of the entire voyage!
What happened to the Sphinx? - she saves Cassie and then disappears.
Was Lily (the girls' mother) really a 'spiritual guide'? How did she know about the Unicorn and the Landscape of Imagination?
What happened to the disgraced Oberon?
Did Sebastian and Miranda really get together?
Why did Professor Aisling pick up all those rocks from the different islands? - it looked like it would be an evolving story line but nothing came of it.
Too many unanswered questions!!!