Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium
is the story of Edward Magorium (Dustin Hoffman
), who is over 200 years old and owns the remarkable toy store of the title. Molly Mahoney (Natalie Portman
) is the manager of the store. The time comes for Mr. Magorium to "go", so he hires an accountant named Henry (Jason Bateman
) to go over the store's finances and transfer ownership of the building into Molly's name. Meanwhile, he gives Molly a block of mysterious wood called the Congreve Cube. Molly tries to convince Mr. Magorium to stay in his magical toy store instead of "going."
The film, which debuted in 2007, received lukewarm reviews at best, though the performances by the lead actors were generally praised. In recent years, however, it's become something of a Cult Classic
. Visually impressive with plenty of effects, it is at its heart a story about finding your own "inner magic" and bringing it to life.
This film provides examples of:
- Alternative Foreign Theme Song: Kimura Kaela's "Jasper" is the theme song for the Japanese version.
- Ambiguous Disorder: Eric. In his lines of dialogue, he doesn't have the usual voice inflections that people are expected to have when speaking. One particular trait of his that is pointed out is his trouble making friends except with Mr. Magorium, Molly, and Henry, who are all adults. Also, don't forget his massive collection of hats.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Mr. Magorium's ultimate fate. And yet, it really is death by any other name.
- Bag of Holding: While Mr. Magorium is in the hospital, Eric brings him some things from the gift shop in a paper bag. He pulls a ridiculous number of things out of it, including a hose with a nozzle, a wooden plank, and a euphoniumnote .
- Bifauxnen: Molly's appearance is fairly androgynous.
- Bigger on the Inside: The toy store.
- But Now I Must Go: Mr. Magorium's decision to "leave" prompts the plot.
- Clap Your Hands If You Believe: It's what makes the toy store magical.
- Companion Cube: The block of wood Mr. Magorium gives to Molly, which may or may not have been a Magic Feather.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Mr. Magorium.
- Deadly Euphemism
- Empathic Environment: The toy store turns gray when it gets depressed.
- Genius Loci: The toy store, which has a mind much like a child's.
- It Runs on Nonsensoleum: Mr. Magorium's long lifespan is attributed to his having bought a "lifetime's supply" of shoes that lasted 200 years. When the last pair goes, so does he.
- His dialogue implied more that he was always long-lived, and that he bought 200 years' worth of shoes as a way of marking time—as he wears each pair out, he can estimate how much longer he has left.
- Intergenerational Friendship: What Eric, a preteen child, has with Mr. Magorium, Molly, and Henry, who are all adults.
- Muppet Cameo: Kermit the Frog shops at the Emporium. Yes, really.
- Never Say "Die": Averted - at first, Mr. Magorium refers to his imminent death as "leaving." Then Molly uses the D word, and later it actually shows Mr. Magorium's funeral.
- Never Trust a Trailer: The trailer explained absolutely nothing about the story being told in the film, leading some to presume it was "a movie about CGI".
- The trailers played up the whimsy leading to a lot of kids in theaters expecting fun and leaving with emotions ranging from bored with the actual plot to being unexpectedly upset by it.
- Nice Hat: Eric has a huge hat collection, and he wears a different hat every day.
- Really Two Hundred and Forty Three Years Old: Mr. Magorium, who has also played hopscotch with Abraham Lincoln and helped Thomas Edison come up with the idea for the lightbulb.
- Visual Pun: A statue of Abraham Lincoln...made from Lincoln Logs.