Laura's Star is a 2004 German animated film based on the children's book of the same name. It received an English dub and American release by Warner Bros. Family Entertainment.
The story follows a seven-year-old girl named Laura, who moves with her family from the quiet countryside to a larger city. Initially disliking her situation, and finding it difficult to make friends, things turn around for her when she sees a shooting star crash to Earth. Laura takes the star back to her home, reattaching its broken point with a band-aid, and the two begin a fantastical friendship.But the star slowly begins to lose its light, and Laura discovers that the longer the star is away from its true home, the weaker it gets, and will eventually fade entirely if nothing is done.
The film was one of the most popular animated films of 2004, and is the most successful animated film in German film history.
- 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The Sun and Moon. Also some of the buildings Laura and Star fly past. The two sequels did a bit better, having cel-shading over the CG.
- Adaptation Expansion
- Adult Fear: When her mother, a cello-player, forgets her bow on the night of a concert, Laura sneaks out of the house and tries to go across town all by herself to return it, in the middle of the night when she should have been in bed. A seven-year-old girl is all alone in a strange, large city, and her parents are none the wiser. Then later there's the fact that she very easily could have died during Star's fading and crash-landing, and again: her parents wouldn't know until too late, because they think she's in bed, asleep.
- A Friend in Need: Laura and Max are indifferent to each other at best, antagonistic at worst. After he sees her and Star fall out of the sky and learns that Star has faded, he immediately offers to help Laura save it.
- Ambiguous Gender: Star, of course. Some websites like to say Star's a girl, though.
- Animated Adaptation: Based on the books by Kalus Baumgart.
- Award-Bait Song: "Touch The Sky"
- Batman in My Basement: Laura hides Star in her room, and carries it around in her backpack when she goes out. At one point she has to sneak backstage at the theater hall to retrieve a runaway Star and prevent her parents from finding it.
- Bittersweet Ending: Star returns to the sky, it being the only way it can survive, and the toys become lifeless again. However, Laura has grown from her experiences with Star and learned to appreciate her new home, and befriended Max; it's pretty obvious she'll be okay even without her new best friend.
- Blush Sticker: Not just Laura...everyone has these, even the adults.
- But Now I Must Go: Star kinda has to do this, since it can't survive otherwise.
- Cerebus Retcon: During the "Stay" sequence, Star shows that it fades a little when wet, but is always able to shake its light back on, and it offers a few adorable sight-gags during the sequence. Then later when it's taking Laura home from the concert hall, a rainstorm suddenly breaks out, and Star's light begins flickering erratically. Unable to find a dry place in time, constantly pelted with water, Star is unable to turn its light back on, and fades.
- Cheerful Child: Laura, after she meets Star.
- Children Are Innocent
- Christmas Special: Laura's Christmas Star.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: You remember Max, Laura's neighbor who plays an important part in the climax and eventually becomes one of her first friends in her new home? Well, the sequels sure don't.
- Dead Hat Shot: When Star crash-lands in the stream, the point it broke off in the first fall snaps off again and floats to the surface, where Max finds it. In a variation, Star's not dead yet... The appearance of its point is to show the light fading from that one tiny piece, telling the audience that Star's time is nearly up.
- Disney Death: Star
- Flight: One of Star's powers, which it can spread to others—it makes several objects in Laura's room fly around it.
- Good Parents: Laura's mom and dad are this to a tee. They even take a break from unpacking to open up as many more boxes as they can, just because their son's favorite toy hadn't been unpacked yet.
- Good-Times Montage: The "Stay" sequence shows Laura and Star spending time together and becoming best friends.
- Living Toys: One of Star's special powers is apparently to bring Laura and her brother's toys to life.
- Never Say "Die": It's pretty obvious that "fade" means "die." They only say the former, though.
- Only Known by Their Nickname / No Name Given: Laura takes to calling the star simply "Star." It probably doesn't have a name beyond that.
- Scenery Porn
- Sequel: The movie was successful enough to receive three; Laura's Christmas Star, Laura's Star and the Mysterious Dragon (which featured the cast traveling to China), and Laura's Star and the Dream Monsters. The latter two were cel-shaded CGI. The former was done in 2D animation with 3D effects like the original.
- Spin-Off: It also spun off a TV series, which is apparently done in Adobe Flash, and has a different art style from the movies.
- Tag Along Kid: Laura's brother, Tommy.
- The Magic Goes Away: It's subtle, but after Star returns to the sky and Laura awakes back in her room, Laura and Tommy's toys are no longer moving. Since it was Star's magic that gave them life to begin with, it's quite likely that this trope is at work. But...
- The Magic Comes Back: Star returns for the three sequels, and as a result the toys awaken again, too. Additionally, Star visits Laura regularly in the TV series.
- They Should Have Sent A Poet: When Star takes Laura flying all over the town one night.
- True Companions
- Tsundere: Laura seems to be a Type B. She's really a sweet, good kid; it's just the unwanted move from the country to the city has made her snarky, bitter, and initially unwilling to befriend the kids in her neighborhood.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Laura puts Star in her backpack and runs down her apartment stars; she trips, but Star flies her down safely, over a custodian, and out the door. The custodian's response to seeing a little girl actually fly? Shake his head and shrug it off.