This review of the Netflix film The School for Good and Evil contains no spoilers.
Finally, the long-awaited fancy the film is available to watch on Netflix. The School of Good and Evil is based on the best-selling book series by Soman Chainani and has a star-studded cast to draw us in. Is this movie the magical drama we all need to fill a wand-shaped hole in our hearts? Well, yes it is. With a duration of two hours and twenty-eight minutes, you will dive into a world completely different from yours.
Along with the excellent CGI, props, and female lead storyline, we have excellent acting with top-notch chemistry (well done, casting team). The film follows the story of two best friends, Sophie (Sophia Anne Caruso) and Agatha (Sofia Wylie) who find themselves thrown into an enchanted school aimed at forming heroes and villains to protect the balance of good and evil.
The acting is fantastic and although some of the characters are overly theatrical and goofy, it’s portrayed so well that it’s believable and doesn’t feel corny or forced. The film is told throughout Cate Blanchett (who also narrated a small part of The Lord of the Ringswhich gave me so much warm nostalgia), and that helps because there’s a lot going on in this movie, his soft voices are nice.
The costumes and sets in this film are fabulous; all the effort and thought that has gone into it really helps transport audiences to their magical realm. As envisioned by production designer Andy Nicholson, the castle contains two schools, one gothic, dark and almost undesirable, the other colorful, fruitful and rather expensive looking. It’s really Harry Potter who meets Bridgerton, meets Lord of the Rings. All the best things rolled into one.
The only downside for me is that the movie moves pretty quickly, and with such a fast pace, it doesn’t leave much time for the audience to admire and feel that sense of discovery. However, it uses so many well-known tropes that there is comfort in the known and if you’re a fan of fantasy you’ll learn a lot quickly. I really enjoy the little character references such as one boy being Captain Hook’s son, the other being King Arthur’s son, the villainous Rafal walking through the magic mirror, and many more. The best part is that their magic comes from their finger lighting up like ET’s. I also think that when you watch it over and over, you’ll see something new and different every time.
While this school is filled with magic, it’s more like a boarding school for the spoiled, and unlike Harry Potter, he doesn’t have that muggle magical essence of reality. Although, if you can ignore that, this movie is a great watch. The movie lays the groundwork for the inevitable sequels, so I’m excited to see the next in the franchise.
Overall, I really enjoyed The School for Good and Evil. It filled an imaginary void in my heart and it’s one I can easily watch again and again. While it may be aimed more at teens and young adults, it’s still a movie that all adults can indulge in and enjoy.
What did you think of The School for Good and Evil? Comments below.
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