Penned by goth heroes Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean (who directs), MirrorMask tries its damndest to be a dark and haunting fairytale, but only partially succeeds. Using an often distracting mixture of live actors and CGI, it tells the story of circus performer Helena (Stephanie Leonidas), who finds herself in an alternate world after her mother is taken ill. Hunted by an evil queen (Gina McKee), Helena stumbles across floating giants, psycho cats and sinister puppets - but while some of her adventures are memorable (a makeover scene set to a cover of The Carpenters' 'Close To You' is downright unsettling), much of MirrorMask is just too bizarre for its own good. Which means there's not much to draw in an audience except for the extraordinary visuals... And, as fascinating as they are, they have a murky, muddy quality that becomes tiresome. Disappointing.
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