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I'm not quite sure how I missed this movie when it came out. Though I wasn't quite as into swords-and-sorcery fantasy as I once was, I would still have identified at the time as a fantasy fan. Maybe my lukewarm relationship with Neil Gaiman was to blame? Regardless, I blame my friends for not cluing me into this movie at the time.

Fast forward to Christmas 2014 when we're hanging around at Tara's sister's new apartment. She has it recorded, learns we haven't seen it, and makes it her mission to make us see it. So, knowing nothing about it, I find myself watching it. Lo and behold, it's pretty good. Now my mystification at not having heard of it is redoubled. This is a clear successor to Princess Bride, and I don't understand why nerds haven't banded together behind this one the way they have for Princess Bride.

This is not to say the movie is without fault. It's sexual politics in particular are pretty rough. Female agency is restricted to the Evil Old Witch trope, every other female is reduced to bit part or prize to be won by the hero. I get that this comes from fairy tales, but it still is pretty tedious.

That aside, the writing is great, the story is amusing, and I'm glad I saw this. For one thing, at least I can say I've seen something with Claire Danes in it, finally.

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