Charlie Cox as Tristian is an…adequate lead at best. There’s nothing necessarily bad about him, but he’s badly overshadowed by everybody else.
Tristian has a couple of flawed scenes, namely when he’s suddenly ditching Yvaine to go to be with Victoria which is a d*ck move. It comes out of nowhere and for me damages his likeability.
Michelle Pfeiffer is great as the main villain Lamia, she’s both funny and threatening, although a tad useless at points, I lost count of how many times she relies on the help of her sisters.
Claire Danes is good as Yvaine and expressive as hell, Robert De Niro is bloody awesome as Captain Shakespeare, Mark Strong is memorable as the Prince Septimus, and both Ricky Gervais and Mark Williams are hilarious in their very brief spots as Ferdy and Billy respectively.
Although a little overburdened with multiple plot-points at once, the overall story is more or less straight forward to follow and understand.
The story does take a while to get going; okay in the first half but gradually gaining momentum and improving as it goes, leading into a stronger second half.
A lot of fantastic creativity is employed and that balances out well with the high amount of comedy.
There’s a decent mixture of nice scenery spanning the woods, the countryside and the mountains that results in plenty of sweeping shots.
The pacing is incredibly choppy, noticeably rushing through scenes at times, including moments that should have made a bigger emotional impact. For example, Tristian finally meeting his mother seems so brushed aside without a second glance.
The CGI is terrible, looking quite bad especially by 2007 standards, with a number of the effects looking out of date by nearly a decade.