One of the mild disappointments of the otherwise enjoyable German kids flick Maya the Bee Movie was that original cast member Nina Hagen was not retained for the English-language dub. Boris Aljinovic and Harald Siepermann’s equally Teutonic The Seventh Dwarf makes up for that by allowing Hagen to voice her character for this domestic release, but her presence is just about all the picture has going for it.
The story is the standard post-Shrek fairytale goulash, as bumbling dwarf Bobo (Joshua Graham) and his six copyright-friendly companions set out to rescue Princess Rose (Peyton List), a/k/a Sleeping Beauty, from the witch Dellamorta (Hagen). They’re aided by Rose’s boring secret boyfriend, Jack (Henning Nöhren), and eventually Dellamorta’s dragon Burner (Norm MacDonald, and as always, Burners ruin everything).
The original Brothers Grimm stories were hardly feminist, but The Seventh Dwarf‘s female characters are deplorably retrograde on both the script and design levels; they have little to do except be rescued, and Snow White is a vain, buxom sexpot whom the dwarfs leer at. At least Hagen does the best she can with the material, sandpapering the walls with her glorious voice, and she gets to sing a song.
It ain’t “Revolution Ballroom,” but then The Seventh Dwarf ain’t Shrek, or even Maya the Bee Movie.
The Seventh Dwarf
Directed by Boris Aljinovic and Harald Siepermann
Opens July 31, Landmark Sunshine
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 28, 2015