This is less an adaptation of Neil Gaimans 1999 novel than of its dust-jacket synopsis. This will come as disconcerting news to fans of the author, whose delicate, jigsaw-puzzle fantasies are populated by contemptuous faeries and sanguine mortals. Lost in Stardust is the poetry of Gaimans writing, which is replaced by brute-force storytelling. Still, the story itself is sturdy enough to survive; its as old as papyrus itself a quest tale in which a young man named Tristan (the generic Charlie Cox) must endure myriad perils in order to fetch a fallen star thats the object of his alleged true love's deepest desire. Alas, the star is far more than a radiant rock; shes a young woman called Yvaine, played by Claire Danes, whos also being chased by are a trio of witches, chief among them Lamia (Michelle Pfeiffer), and two would-be kings. Stardust will accrue many comparisons to Rob Reiners The Princess Bride, but director Matthew Vaughns variation on the theme isnt as playful as Reiners, and when Stardust does delve into comedy, it fails miserably. Robert De Niro shows up halfway through as a closeted, cross-dressing captain of a high-flying pirate ship, and hes an utter distraction a reminder that, hey, this is just a silly movie about silly things starring famous people acting silly.
Matthew VaughnClaire Danes, Charlie Cox, Sienna Miller, Ricky Gervais, Jason Flemyng, Rupert Everett, Peter O'Toole, Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De NiroNeil Gaiman, Jane Goldman, Matthew VaughnMichael Dreyer, Neil Gaiman, Matthew Vaughn, Lorenzo di BonaventuraParamount Pictures