“Unicorns? I thought they only existed in fairy tales?”
“I tell you, there is at least one unicorn left in the world…
Good luck to you! For you are the last!”
And from in the forest the beautiful Unicorn wonders… “Am I the last?”
OMG! This movie.
“The Last Unicorn”, by Rankin and Bass Productions in 1982. Based on the book “The Last Unicorn” by Peter S. Beagle… the screenplay written by him as well, so the movie is pretty much the same, but buy the book anyway! Gorgeous songs written by “America”.
One summer while visiting my grandma up in St. Paul, Minnesota, my sisters and I befriended the neighbor girl, whose parents had rented this movie. I think during our stay I must have watched it a bajillion times. Something about it.
Magic. Beautiful, wondrous, fantastical magic. For as Molly says, “If you have been waiting to see a unicorn for as long as I have…”
The Unicorn longs to discovery what has happened to the other unicorns and asks a passing butterfly, who finally tells her to listen, that she can find them if she is brave… that the Red Bull has chased them, covering their footprints.
So she journeys out into the world, for her friends might need her help. But as we all discover when we leave our homes and enter the world, we don’t know as much as we think. We face fear, doubt, danger.
Men can’t see the Unicorn for what she is… they don’t believe, not anymore. WHICH IS THE SPOT IN THE MOVIE WHERE I CRY OUT… “I BELIEVE IN YOU!!!!!”
A witch finds her, sees her true form and captures her. Mommy Fortuna and her traveling show. Cages are filled with animals magicked to look like fantastical creatures, but the unicorn is real, but so others will believe, the witch gives her a false horn.
Except there is another who sees her. Schmendrick the Magician, though not a very talented one.
He helps her escape because she is true magic, something he desires to have. They meet a band of robbers, use magic to get away from them, and add Molly to their number.
Together they travel to find the other unicorns at the castle of King Haggard and the Red Bull.
Because quests are better with friends, with support.
But as they reach the castle, the Red Bull senses the unicorn’s presence and attacks. to save the unicorn, Schmendrick magically changes her into a woman, a form she can use to search for the answers, to complete her quest.
She becomes the Lady Amalthea. However, a being a unicorn trapped in a human body isn’t good.
She begins to forget as she falls in love with Prince Lir. Molly and Schmendrick keep her focused, reminding her of who she is, of why she is there.
The Red Bull. Save the other unicorns. But how?
When the wine drinks itself. When the skull speaks. When the clock strikes the right time. Then will they find the Bull. Then they can save the others.
And the King knows, guessing what she is… enjoying the fact that she is within his reach.
“There they are. They are mine. They belong to me.”
The Red Bull drove the unicorns into the sea.
For the King. For he had to have them all, because they made him happy.
She must choose. Forget, be human, and leave her kind trapped. Or fight.
They discover the entrance to the cave of the Red Bull. Yet Lady Amalthea barely remembers who she is… why she is there. If she remains human, she can escape the Red Bull, she can stay with her Prince.
But her Prince is a hero and heroes don’t let the quest fade and die. Happy endings only come at the end.
Yet Schmendrick says, “There are no happy endings, because nothing ends.”
They come face to face with the Bull, who now recognizes Amalthea for what she truly is. Schmendrick transforms her back into a unicorn. And the Bull chases her to the sea, to fulfill his purpose.
Now it’s up to her, to choose.
And she fights, finding her strength to free the unicorns, and drives the Red Bull into the sea. Once again, unicorns roam the world. And there is one, who regrets, who keeps a bit of what it is to be human, to love, tucked in her soul, forever changed.
Life is tricky. We set out on our journey. We hold onto dreams. Yet, things happen. Life happens, we’ve all said it or thought it. Eventually, we face choices. Each decision adds to who we are, either pain or joy, fear or excitement. We question. We doubt. Our dreams change. We change.
Sometimes we let what is easy distract us from what we want.
Never let fear keep you from listening to where dreams will lead. Never fear a new journey. The quest for who we are, for who we want to be doesn’t ever end.
“Unicorns are in the world again. No sorrow will live in me as long as that joy.”
All we can do is try to be happy with where the paths have taken us.