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The Magic Flute (2006)

tomatometer

80

Average Rating: 6/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 1

No consensus yet.

audience

65

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 1,261

My Rating

Movie Info

Acclaimed director Kenneth Branagh skillfully lifts one of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's most beloved works from its original fairy-tale setting and places it against the backdrop of the First World War with this impassioned English-language adaptation staged to coincide with the 250th anniversary of the master composer's birth. Tamino (Joseph Kaiser) has been wounded in battle, but his life is saved when he is subsequently rescued by three kindly field nurses. Papageno (Benjamin Jay Davis) is a

Jun 10, 2013

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All Critics (21) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (6)

The results are often fascinating (I love the duet of the Armed Men, sung by a chorus of faces animated out of a wall of sandbags), sometimes ludicrous and never boring.

March 20, 2009 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In the end, love triumphs. In this movie, the music triumphs, proving again that a true masterpiece can survive all kinds of meddling.

March 20, 2009 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Apart from a fascination with the hate-spitting mouth and throat of Lyubov Petrova's vocally pyrotechnic Queen of the Night, the visual gimmicks are individually tolerable. But they don't add up to anything particular.

November 29, 2007 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Opera buffs shouldn't throw away their DVDs of Ingmar Bergman's 1975 TV movie.

September 23, 2006 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Even though there were moments in The Magic Flute when I wondered if Branagh hadn't truly gone off his rocker, I found its audacity exhilarating.

September 20, 2006 Full Review Source: Salon.com
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mozart in the Branagh meat grinder.

December 13, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

Like the Beatles' "Yellow Submarine," it's all about the marriage of music and images.

July 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

It dwells quite happily somewhere in the no-man's-land between "Perfect" and "Perfectly Enjoyable."

March 20, 2009 Full Review Source: Jam! Movies
Jam! Movies

Kenneth Branagh's adaptation of Mozart's opera The Magic Flute comes on strong ... maybe too strong...

January 8, 2008 Full Review Source: MovieMartyr.com
MovieMartyr.com

A week is a long time in cinema. Last Friday saw Branagh being all but written off thanks to the ludicrous Sleuth. This week, he's hitting the high notes.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

His flamboyant rendering of the Mozart opera isn't as smug and stagey as Sleuth, but it is insufferable - and 40 minutes longer.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Independent
Independent

With James Conlon conducting, this Flute is perfectly in tune - so it's a shame Branagh keeps dropping it in the mud.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

The film is fresh, spectacular and unafraid to be called philistine.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Financial Times
Financial Times

A genial and good-natured production with much spectacle and entertainment to offer, and, like all of Branagh's classical revivals on celluloid, it manages to be high-minded and yet accessible.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Guardian
Guardian

Despite the talent involved - Branagh is joined by Stephen Fry, who has written a new libretto - and the ambitious staging, this flute blows all right, but it's short on the magic.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Times [UK]
Times [UK]

Flashes of inspiration but not enough, one suspects, to cause a stampeding horde of cinemagoers to beat down the doors of the Royal Opera House.

November 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

It's an impressive undertaking by Branagh but a rather pointless one.

November 29, 2007 Full Review Source: Sky Movies
Sky Movies

A huge budget allows for spectacular CGI sequences and Branagh concocts some startlingly inspired ways to accompany Mozart's music in visuals.

November 29, 2007 Full Review Source: BBC.com
BBC.com

Branagh's imagery is imaginative and the music lifts you. A neat trick.

November 29, 2007 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

Although Branagh has done a good job of toning down the opera's more ridiculous elements, what remains will test even the most willing opera virgin.

November 28, 2007 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Audience Reviews for The Magic Flute

In this adaptation of Mozart's classic opera, Tamino is fights for his love in World War I era trenches.
Kenneth Brannagh, whose Shakespearean adaptations don't always use the advantages of film, makes up for it in this rendition of Mozart's opera. Visual effects abound in Brannagh's best imitation of Julie Taymor, and while some of them are effective, most of the visual stylings do little to advance the plot even though they're fun to look at. The acting and the singing are the real highlights of this film; many of the actors, particularly Benjamin Jay Davis, are able to satisfy the high demands of opera while focusing their work for the film.
Overall, I enjoyed this film even though Brannagh is no Julie Taymor.
June 20, 2013
hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

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Foreign Titles

  • Die Zauberflöte (DE)
  • The Magic Flute (UK)
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