UK/Hungarian Animated Movie (1992). Siriol/Pannonia/S4C/NHX. Pr Robin Lyons. Exec pr Marietta Dárdai, Steve Walsh. Dir József Gémes Spfx Zsuzsanna Bulyiki, Piroska Martsa. Anim dir Les Orton. Screenplay Lyons. Based on The Princess and the Goblin (1872) by George MacDonald. Voice actors Joss Ackland (King), Claire Bloom, Roy Kinnear, Paul Keating (Curdie singing), Sally Ann Marsh, Rik Mayall (Prince Froglip), Peggy Mount, Peter Murray, Victor Spinetti, Mollie Sugden (movie lacks proper credits). 111 minutes. Colour.
Led by their strident Queen, flu-ridden King and sadistic Prince Froglip, the Goblins plan to conquer the world of the Sun People (i.e., humanity) and enslave them Underground; Froglip also hopes forcibly to marry Princess Irene so that, as heir to the human throne, he will have legal dominion over the Sun People. This plan is thwarted by miner's son Curdie and Irene, who was given by her "not-quite-a-Ghost" great-great-grandmother a ring and a ball of invisibly thin thread with the instruction that, if ever in trouble, she should follow the thread to "find your own Magic".
This was a conscious venture into Disney territory, and as such failed: while there is some pleasing work (notably in a final flood sequence, and in the Shapeshifting of Irene's great-great-grandmother), it is lost in much that is clumsy. [JG]