‘Wish Dragon’ Review: Hong Kong-Set Netflix Movie Makes Up in Attitude What It Lacks in Originality
“Wish Dragon” is well aware that “Aladdin” got there first.
Making his spirited feature debut, dream-big animation director Chris Appelhans pretty much assumes you’ll be thinking of Disney’s blue genie when his humble Hong Kong hero rubs a jade teapot and produces a fluorescent flamingo-pink dragon, ready to grant his wildest dreams — or three of them at least.
And you know what? He doesn’t care, because “Wish Dragon” delivers a whole new world, a new fantastic point of view, and that’s plenty.Technically, China’s ancient wish dragon legend predates even “Arabian Nights,” a detail that gives Appelhans license to update the folk tale for the modern world, while stripping it of so many of the tired clichés that now come with the territory in practically any wish-granting fable — like the wet-blanket “be careful what you wish for” trope, where an unlucky so-and-so’s poorly worded request inevitably backfires,
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