Future cultural historians will end up confused by "Tooth," a kids fantasy set in North America, shot in the U.K. (and looking like it), peopled by stereotypes from both countries, and with a fantasy element based on British WWII pics. Strictly for undemanding 8-year-olds, and ballasted by a host of English character types in cameos, this is lame entertainment.

Future cultural historians will end up totally confused by “Tooth,” a kids fantasy set in North America, shot in the U.K. (and looking like it), peopled by stereotypes from both countries, and with a fantasy element based on British WWII pics. Strictly for undemanding 8-year-olds, and ballasted by a host of English character types in cameos, this is lame entertainment. Christmas-set pic (curiously lensed under summery skies) was dumped in U.K. theaters Feb. 13.

Movie introduces sparky young Yank Yasmin Paige as Tooth, who’s so exasperated with life in Fairytopia (equipped like a Battle of Britain control room) that she reverses her dental scooper and floods the bedroom of two kids (Maisie Preston, Rory Copus) with dollar bills. Cue panic in Fairytopia, led by a gray bunny (Jim Broadbent, with an American accent), that they have no loot left to cheer children at Xmas. Meanwhile, the two kids and Tooth travel to find Mrs. Claus (classy Phyllida Law) and the money, which has gone missing; in pursuit is nebulous villain Plug (Brit TV comic Harry Endfield). Color processing is cold and unattractive, editing mercifully tight, effects charmingly clunky.

Tooth

U.K.

Production

A Redbus Film Distributors release of an Archangel Filmworks, Redbus Pictures production, in association with Great British Films. (International sales: Lakeshore Intl., Hollywood.) Produced by Susie Brooks-Smith, Simon Franks, Zygi Kamasa. Executive producers, Adam Betteridge, David Rogers. Directed, written by Edouard Nammour. Additional acript material, Piers Fletcher, Simon Franks, Zygi Kamasa.

Crew

Camera (color), Clive Tickner; editor, Alan Strachan; music, Guy Fletcher; production designer, James Merifield; supervising art director, Tim Ellis; art directors, Julia Castle, Rebecca Holmes; costume designer, Howard Burden. Reviewed at Warner Village West End 8, Feb. 19, 2004. Running time: 90 MIN.

With

Yasmin Paige, Tim Dutton, Sally Phillips, Harry Endfield, Vinnie Jones, Stephen Fry, Jerry Hall, Richard E. Grant, Phyllida Law, Jim Broadbent, Anna Wing, Elizabeth McKechnie, Maisie Preston, Rory Copus, Lily Atkinson, Patrick Monckton, Craig Parkinson, Georgina Terry.
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