It’s been a good while since I watched /read The Last Unicorn by Peter S Beagle. However, as I’ve just found the animated version on YouTube, and my dissertation is with my tutor for comments, I’m spending a glorious time wallowing in the depths of some childhood nostalgia. It made me want to be a unicorn trainer when I grew up. Still working on that one 😉
At heart, The Last Unicorn is a very simple pure tale of somebody trying to find their place in the world. It just so happens that the individual trying to find their place is a unicorn. Helped and hindered and pushed and pulled in all directions, she experiences a life-changing journey which makes her truly question who and what and why she is what she is.
The film itself is very much of a time and stylistically somewhat reminiscent of the animated version of Lord of the Rings. That’s not to say that it is without a certain vivid charm. The soundtrack is peculiarly epic; all emotive ballads and soaring meaningful lyrics. It’s as if the soundtracks from the Never Ending Story and Lord of the Rings had a slightly trippy evening together (“Middle Earth is rough man but that swamp pony death thing was tooo hardcore”) and The Last Unicorn was the product of that.
And it still had the power to move me. I admit that’s not hard (I wept when Hot Rod accepted the Matrix and became Rrrrrrrodimus Priiiimmmme) but The Last Unicorn still has it.
PS: I am, also, distinctly impressed that a generation of children escaped being emotionally scarred by unicorn drowning and the terrifying red bull. Go team!