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ALCHEMIST CURSED IN TIME is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
Recommended age 12-18
140 minutes
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Wow! What an exquisite production. I absolutely love Alchemist Cursed in Time -- it's a quality fantasy movie. Even though I haven't seen the first one, this one doesn't suffer from lack of understanding. I really like the story - it is simple and easy to understand, and filled with content about love and the people who are important to you. It is perfect for children and Amelia (Eliska Krenkova) makes a great heroine role model.

Alchemist Cursed In Time is a sequel to the Czech fantasy Princess Cursed In Time. In this film, Alazar (Jan Jackuliak) takes young Amelia and her friends to a magical city where they have an adventure where they discover mysterious and powerful forces, most importantly that there are two Amelias in the world. That takes them to the magic city and on a mission to save the world. Amelia discovers that the reason for Alazar's reappearance in the world has something to do with her.

This is really an outstanding film. I absolutely love the story line. Although I haven't watched the first movie, it appears to be related to the first movie, so if you have, you will doubly appreciate it. I really enjoyed the plot. Fantasy movies are perfect for capturing children's attention and they can learn about things like courage and protecting the people who are important to them. We watch how Amelia grows up and learn about her relationship with the people she cares about. I really love how Amelia's character transforms; she has to face a lot of dilemmas and has to deal with the situation of her other self in the world. Her confusion at the beginning and then her determination at the end are very well presented. It shows how she knows her duty and how her courage increases. I especially liked learning why Alazar appeared and how Amelia's story is also connected in series.

The production is truly first class. The camera work is really outstanding with a large variety of shots from detailed close-ups to distance shots. I especially like the big establish scenes, which are very beautiful and grandiose, and show where the characters are and how they move about. I love the locations, especially the scenes in the mountains, which are very majestic. The sets are also great, revealing a magical ancient world. The background music fits the story very well - it's very epic and magical feeling. I especially like the vocal singing that occurs later in the film; it has an ethereal and wondrous feeling to it. The costumes are outstanding! In particular the women's dresses very much define their characters. Amelia's costume is very different from the Princess's; the purple color of Amelia's dress emphasizes her ability to use magic, while the Princess's gowns are mostly white, showing a more noble and regal feel. Of course, the costumes of the other male characters also fit the background of the story very well. The sets are excellently crafted, particularly the castle and the houses near the streets. The special effects are very effective, represent the story well and are of extremely high quality. For example, the aperture on the wall that allows people to pass through the wall is quite striking. The green circle of light that appears from time to time when they use magic also works well. The acting is also outstanding, especially the character of Amelia, whose character has dramatic growth as the film develops. But the other key characters, Prince John, Princess Ellena, Edwin, Marien and, of course, Alazar, are all excellent in their roles. My favorite part of the film is when they come to the enchanted city and pass by a beauty salon. One of the salon's customers don't come in person for her beauty treatments, but instead uses magic to transport parts of her body there, like her feet or head. That scene is clever and very funny and shows how the city is full of magical qualities.

The film's message is about courage, adventure and magic.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. By Xiangxi K., KIDS FIRST!

I struggled to maintain my attention to this film due to its formulaic composition, pacing, and the lackluster character development. However, it may prove to be more entertaining to young people who enjoy imagining magical worlds beyond the scope of our own.

The story follows the dark Alchemist Alazar who intends to capture and use to his own advantage all five powers under the protection of the Alchemist community, and Amelia must make difficult decisions about how to use the power she has been individually protecting to serve her friends and her community.

The storyline incorporates all the fantasy elements: heroes, villains, quests, magic, fellowship, treachery, self-doubt, personal courage, and happy endings. Also included are the comedic sidekicks who seem to ridicule each other rather than invite laughter. Amelia's disintegrated self is the most interesting twist, as she and a past version of herself each bear half of the power of Time. To integrate the powers might mean dissolution of the past Amelia. The pacing is imbalanced: long and slow exhibition, but there is plenty of quick swordplay in the resolution.

In terms of production, some things stand out such as the technique of fading to a cartoon map when the characters are traveling; it is an excellent way of transitioning from one place to another and provides scope and expediency. Whoever scouted the location for film is to be highly commended. The panoramic shots of mountains and forests are majestic and mythical in scope. Moreover, the buildings chosen for film sites are architecturally conducive to castles and strongholds. The music works to establish tone; for example, when deciding whether she wants to unite the halves of the time power and risk dissolving her other self, there is a song of reverie in the background as Amelia wanders through the streets of Arya. Since the character practice magic, there are plenty of special effects. These are by and large well done, especially the casting of spells. I will note that, in some ways, this technique mirrors the practice of Marvel's Dr. Who, who uses intricate hand gestures to draw runes in the air, which then turn into light discs of attack or protection. Special effects are what this film accomplishes with consistent excellence. None of the characters quite fully develop. Villains are not villainy enough, and good guys are not deeply wrestling with their qualms about preserving their own interests or sacrificing for the greater good. Of note is that Amelia's past self has more pluck and spunk than the present version of Amelia.

The film's message regards individual versus group ethics, whether to engage the ego and act out of self-interest, or to relinquish heroism to the group effort.

I give the film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend if for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. By Debra L., KIDS FIRST!

Alchemist cursed in time (2023) is a sequel to a successful czech fantasy Princess cursed in time (2020) which was distributed all around the world and got numerous festival prizes. In this Sequel the main role takes young Amelia who learns about forbidden power which can save her loved ones but also bind her into darkness. Take a leap and travel into the alchymist town called Ayra together with Amelia, Princess Ellena and Prince Jan. From Czech Republic, Dialogue in Czech and English
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