Metascore
19

Overwhelming dislike - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 23
  2. Negative: 15 out of 23
Watch On
  1. Reviewed by: Monica Eng
    38
    Children's films can be thrilling affairs for parents and kids. Unfortunately, this film is not likely to thrill either group.
  2. 12
    Disheveled tripe pieced together with the good intentions.
  3. 25
    An inept assembly of ill-matched plot points, meandering through a production that has attractive art direction (despite the immobile mouths).
  4. Reviewed by: Kevin Baxter
    25
    Skip the movie and pick up the videos at Toys R Us.
  5. 0
    Even Amtrak hasn't seen a derailment this godawful in some time.
  6. An ugly and insipid film.
  7. 20
    If you're above the target age of 5, Thomas may coax you into a naplike stupor.
  8. Reviewed by: John Hartl
    20
    Only very small children are likely to be satisfied.
  9. Reviewed by: Tom Keogh
    20
    Nearly incomprehensible story.
  10. Lays thick, goopy layers of uplift on what should be lighter on the heart and stomach.
  11. 20
    Mr. Baldwin's attack -- there's no better way to put it -- is unforgettable. He's the first shrunken narrator with a serial killer's swagger.
  12. 30
    Confusing to anyone who's familiar with the word "plot."
User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 28 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 19
  2. Negative: 7 out of 19
  1. Jun 11, 2011
    5
    Thomas The Tank Engine has been known for being the most popular TV show made for children of all ages and it goes on for generations everThomas The Tank Engine has been known for being the most popular TV show made for children of all ages and it goes on for generations ever since, and for some reason, it was based on the Shining Time Station TV show (the only show that I've haven't watched). I have one question before I start reviewing this movie that was based on the show: Is it fair to make fun of a movie you like from your childhood? Hardly, but I've got no time to waste. Time to review.

    The story focuses on Mr. Conductor as his magic gold dust is running low. Desperate to find it in order to get back to Shining Time, he embarks on a journey to Sodor to find the magic gold dust there. Meanwhile, Thomas the tank engine tries to find off the attacks of the evil Diesel 10 before he finds the lost steam engine and destroys it. Getting all the help from his cousin, his new friend Lily, and her grandfather, Mr. Conductor helps find the engine that has been hidden for years in order to find all of the magic gold dust that has also been hidden.

    What's so bad about this movie? The storyline was inconsistent, in my opinion. It had a lot of flaws and plot holes I don't even know how many they were. The storytelling was very poor, and even the script was so bland.

    What's so good about this movie? The cinematography was creative, the acting wasn't half bad, the pacing was good, the visuals were great the music score was very good, and most of all, it had the potential of the TV show despite the fact that the critics said it got americanized.

    Thomas and the Magic Railroad isn't good nor horrible either. It's a very mediocre family movie, but at least they brought the TV show to life on screen. It's worth a watch on VHS and DVD only.

    5/10
    Full Review »
  2. MikeS
    Apr 3, 2009
    1
    This is an absolutely terrible movie even by the standards of my 2 year old. It is poorly acted, poorly scripted, poorly shot and This is an absolutely terrible movie even by the standards of my 2 year old. It is poorly acted, poorly scripted, poorly shot and doesn't even give much screen time to the steam engines (the main reason my 2 year old wanted to watch it). One big long non-sequitur that makes Teletubbies seem like Shakespeare. There is nothing here for your kid. There is nothing here for you. Don't waste your time or money. Full Review »
  3. Jan 21, 2015
    0
    This is a horrible misuse of the much loved series of stories about every child's favourite tank engine. For a start, it appears to have beenThis is a horrible misuse of the much loved series of stories about every child's favourite tank engine. For a start, it appears to have been written by someone who has never had anything remotely to do with the original stories and TV shows. The world realised in this movie is nothing like that in the original material. For some reason this film tries to explain why the tank engines are alive. The island of Sodor is some parallel magical dimension model railway, with magical special coal and magical gold dust for teleporting around the place. Flowers act as telephones, magic vegetables inexplicably hang by cloths pegs, and magic buffers act as a gateway to a conduit between worlds. In the original stories you just accepted the engines had personalities, and it needed no explanation. Then there's the cast of characters. Rather than have the engines as the main characters and stars of the story, and have the Fat Controller, they had to introduce a cast of completely new human characters. All of them look like they are lost as the film staggers between poorly disjointed scenes and plot points, and all of them have been given positively terrible dialogue to deliver that wavers from putrid to cliched to saccharine sweet. Why has a Moondoggie clone been added to this film? What is the purpose of the native American Indian character? Peter Fonda looks particularly lost in his role. Most of the characters act in silos, there is little meaningful interaction between them at all. Worst of all is the antagonist that has been created for the film - Diesel 10. In all the original stories, all the engines are inherently good and well-meaning, but many have character flaws and they make poor decisions through bad judgement. Throughout the stories, the engines receive their comeuppance, learn valuable lessons, and redeem themselves. Diesel 10 however is unique in that he is the only truly psychopathic character in the Thomas universe. He is the clear stereotypical bad guy, and all his intentions are deliberately evil. He is pugnacious, and violent, and wilfully tries to harm other characters for his own means. He has no redeemable qualities whatsoever. This is an example of the clear Americanisation of this film, where there has to be a clear bad guy who everybody fights against and the audience can hate. Plus they had to add in a pair of brainless stooges for him as well, in classic gangster tradition. To top it all off, the pacing of the film is dreadful, and the direction non-existent. If I had to say something positive about the film, my 2 year old loves it, but then again that could be a negative because it means I have to sit through this awful film multiple times. Full Review »