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."
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.
- 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 .
- Bigger on the Inside: The toy store. On the surface, it looks like one's usual one-story shop but, when you go inside, the story has loads of things, two stories, and many secret rooms.
- But Now I Must Go: Mr. Magorium's decision to "leave" prompts the plot.
- Character Development: Molly becomes more confident, and Henry learns to see the magic in life.
- Clap Your Hands If You Believe: Belief is what makes the toy store magical, and Molly's lack of it (more in herself than the store) is what causes everything to go black and depressing.
- Companion Cube: The block of wood (the Congreve Cube) Mr. Magorium gives to Molly, which may or may not have been a Magic Feather.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Mr. Magorium. His Interview of Henry consists of asking off the wall questions (amongst which "The number 4, do we really need it?") until the poor man comments "Anything can happen." this gets him hired on the spot. He then spends the whole movie calling him "Mutant" (not "a mutant", "Mutant", as if that were his name) because earlier he noted that an accountant "must be a cross between a counter and a mutant".
- Deadly Euphemism: When Mr Magorium says he's leaving, what he means is he's dying.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: An interesting mixture with One Dialogue, Two Conversations, as Mahoney is basically trying to get Magorium interned:Magorium: Delusional? I'm not delusional!
Mahoney [to the doctor]: He hasn't been making any sense.
Magorium: Oh bunkum! Hogwash! Pure horseradish!
Mahoney: He claims he owns a magical toy store...
Magorium: I do. You work there.
Mahoney: ...and that he's two hundred and thirty-two years old.
Magorium: I am not two hundred and thirty-two years old, I am two hundred and thirty-three. You were at my birthday party. You brought me balloons.
Doctor: yeah, he's delusional.
- Empathic Environment: The toy store turns gray and dim when it gets depressed. When Molly gets more confidence and reconsiders selling the store because of her rekindled belief in magic, it starts to get brighter and more colorful.
- The Fantastic Trope of Wonderous Titles: The movie is about a man named Mr. Magorium and his wonderful toy store.
- Friend to All Children: Mr. Magorium and Molly, naturally. Henry also has shades of this, more so as the story goes on.
- Genius Loci: The toy store, which has a mind much like a child's.
- Inexplicably Awesome: There is no explanation for how Magorium has lived for so long or why his store is magical.
- 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 Guy: Mr Magorium, who's an all around fun guy, and gets along great with the customers.
- There's also Molly, who's really sweet and patient.
- Nice Hat: Eric has a huge hat collection, and he wears a different hat every day.
- Or Was It a Dream?: It is never made clear whether the scene when Molly makes the cube fly is real or not. The next chapter may be titled "Messing with the mutant", but it might as well have been "Messing with the audience"!
- Really 700 Years Old: Mr. Magorium, who has also played hopscotch with Abraham Lincoln and helped Thomas Edison come up with the idea for the lightbulb.
- Ship Tease: Between Molly and Henry.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Despite some surprisingly depressing and heartwrenching moments, it's still heavily on the idealistic end.
- Title Drop: When Mr. Magorium tells Mahoney that he plans on giving her the store, she insists that he has to run it, saying, "It's called Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium! It rhymes!"
- Visual Pun: A statue of Abraham Lincoln... made from Lincoln Logs.