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Film / Veronica Dilogy

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A very special adventure

The Veronica Dilogy (comprised of Veronica and Veronica Returns) is a series of Romanian musical films released between 1972-1973 and directed by Elisabeta Bostan. The story follows Veronica, a charming and energetic little girl who lives in an orphanage somewhere in the mountains. On her fifth birthday, she receives a magic bag as a present from the Dandelion Fairy. With this magic bag, she can have all her wishes fulfilled - the only requirement is for Veronica to always behave well and share what she has with the other children.

Unfortunately, the other orphans become a little grabby with the magic bag and Veronica refuses to relinquish it, which prompts the magical object to leave her. Distraught, she chases after it into the nearby forest, and encounters a whole magical world of talking animals who want to help her find her magic bag... or use her to their advantage.


In the sequel, Veronica's pet duck is stolen by the Fox, and she ventures to the forest again in hopes of rescuing it. On her journey, she encounters old friends and makes new ones. The musicals are notable for using many motifs found in fables and fairy tales, and for their detailed and imaginative sets.

Tropified, the films provide examples of:


  • Adult Fear: The innocent and naive Veronica runs off into the forest and encounters some rather unsavory characters on the way, such as the Fox and Dănilă the Tomcat.
  • Agent Scully: Several children at the orphanage. One boy in particular doesn't believe in anything fantasy-related and comments often during Smaranda's stories, calling them fiction. Other girls doubt that Veronica's wish of flying would come true, even though they personally witnessed the Magic Bag fulfilling several wishes.
  • Baddie Flattery: The Fox prides herself on her ability to flatter her targets. She uses it to manipulate or distract them.
  • Big Fancy House: The orphanage is beautiful, with hardwood floors and wood paneling. Its grounds are extensive, and the children have their own playground.
  • Cats Are Mean: Dănilă the Tomcat is pretty merciless when it comes to mice, and overall not the nicest character.
  • Classy Cat-Burglar: The Fox is a sophisticated thief and opportunist.
  • Chase Scene: The Tomcat chases Veronica and the mice around the forest.
  • Cheerful Child: Veronica is an adorable little girl.
  • Chekhov's Skill: The Firefly that Veronica meets upon first entering the forest teaches her a few magic words that allow her to shrink in size. She later uses this to become mouse-sized and bond with the mice in the Tomcat's mill.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The Teacher is fond of dishing out these. After discovering that Smaranda the Maid was telling bedtime stories to the children, she goes around the room and nitpicks at things (a window cracked open, Smaranda's dusty cleaning rags, even the way some children look at her) and fires her on the spot, leading to a crowd of distressed children begging her to reconsider. She also punishes Veronica, a five year old little girl, by cancelling her birthday celebration just because she was up past her bedtime, listening to stories with the other children. Fortunately, she relents in both cases and is shown to genuinely care about the children.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: The Tomcat constantly fails to shoot Aurel the Mouse, even when his target is a few feet away from him.
  • The Fagin: The Fox is a female example. She manipulates Veronica into assisting her steal the Crow's cheese, and planned to turn her into her Little Miss Con Artist.
  • Hypocrite: The Fox pretends to be outraged at being called a thief by the Crow, even though she steals food from others on a daily basis.
  • Karma Houdini: The Fox lies and steals food from multiple characters, uses Veronica and then makes the child her scapegoat. She doesn't get any comeuppance in the first film.
  • The Lost Woods: The ones Veronica runs off into are ancient, with huge trees and flowers, and inhabited by humanoid animals and insects.
  • Manipulative Bitch: The Fox tricks the Crow into dropping his cheese and then steals it from him. She also steals the Tomcat's fish and blames Veronica for the deed.
  • Opportunistic Bitch: The Fox practically operates on this. She wanders through the forest searching for food to steal. When she meets Veronica, she immediately grabs the chance to turn her into her thieving underling. During the fight between Aurel and Dănilă the Tomcat, she takes advantage of the chaos to steal Dănilă's sausages and leaves leisurely out the front door.
  • Orphanage of Love: The orphanage where Veronica lives is clean, well-furnished and comfortable and the staff cares deeply for the children.
  • Or Was It a Dream?: Veronica goes to sleep in the forest and suddenly wakes up in the meadow in front of her orphanage, surrounded by her fellow pupils, seemingly never having gone into the forest. She then sees the Dandelion Fairy, who gives her the Magic Bag once again, as a reward for the kindness and courage she has shown during her adventures.
  • Prim and Proper Bun: The Teacher wears one.
  • Scenery Porn: The sets are beautifully designed and built. At one point, Veronica becomes mouse-sized and the furniture on the set grows accordingly.
  • Shout-Out: The fox and the crow, together with the ant and the cricket, are a direct reference to Aesop's Fables. Lampshaded by the Crow, who laments his foolishness and says he'll probably end up as a main character in a fable.
  • Stern Teacher: The nameless Teacher at Veronica's orphanage. She tends to be too strict and uptight, but truly loves the children under her care.
  • The Storyteller: Smaranda tells the children fairy tales before bed.
  • Trigger Happy: Dănilă the Tomcat loves shooting his pistol into the air. It underlines his impulsive nature.
  • Villain Song: The songs of both the Tomcat and the Fox.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The Fox takes Veronica out for a lesson in how to steal, but at one point she gets annoyed with her and gives her a whack on the head. It's not a playful one, either.
  • Would Hit a Girl: During his wild fight with Aurel, the Tomcat whacks the Fox a couple of times by accident, but doesn't seem very regretful.

    Veronica Returns 
  • A Girl And Her X: Veronica and her (nameless) pet duck.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: The Cricket is marginalized because he's an artist who would rather spend his days sleeping and his nights composing songs, while the other insects were hard at work collecting food for the winter.
  • The Bard: The Cricket. He performs beautiful songs for his fellow insects, although he tends to be seen as a Lazy Bum by the hard-working ants.
  • Damsel in Distress: Veronica is kidnapped by the Tomcat and the Fox and trapped in a moving carriage.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: The Ant Empress is initially indifferent towards the fate of the Cricket, but eventually is swayed by his music and allows him to remain in her hive.
  • The High Queen: The Ant Empress is a hard-working, responsible monarch.
  • Homeless Hero: The Cricket doesn't have a home, unlike the rest of the insects. He just sleeps in his hammock during the night. This gets him in trouble during the winter, as the ants kick him out of their hive for not having contributed with anything during summer.
  • MacGuffin: As reward for helping the ants with their work, the Ant Empress gives a magic bead to Veronica, which has the power to summon all her friends to help her.
  • Nice Guy: The Fox promises to free Veronica's duck if Veronica steals the Crow's cheese. She attempts to flatter him into dropping the cheese as in the previous film, but he's caught on already and smartened up. He gives Veronica a slice of his cheese anyway.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: The Ant Empress is always knitting, and is generally on the lookout for anyone in her empire who isn't working.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: The Fox and the Tomcat are more aggressive in the sequel, threatening and stalking Veronica, as well as gleefully preparing to kill and cook the duck.

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