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Thief Lord, The


Stars: Rollo Weeks, Jim Carter, Aaron Johnson, Jasper Harris, Alice Connor, Alexei Sayle, Caroline Goodall, Vanessa Redgrave

Director: Richard Claus

This children's adventure story is stunningly set in Venice, but its juvenile performers make the young stars of the Harry Potter films look like Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep.

Not that the adults are much better, with even the mighty Redgrave resorting to the worst kind of 'mugging' as a toothy nun who lets a gang of street urchins in on the secret of a magic roundabout (no, not that one) that can make the rider younger or older, according to the mount.

The story concerns two runaways who join the gang of sub-teen thieves - shades of Oliver Twist - before getting involved in the hunt for the roundabout. The ending's quite nicely realised, but the acting sinks it without trace in those famous canals.

David Quinlan

Germany/UK/Luxembourg 2005. UK Distributor: Warner Brothers. Colour.
98 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: PG.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 30 Jul 2006