Dec 24, 2019
The NeverEnding Story III: Escape from Fantasia (1994) (part 1 of 8)
The Cast of Characters:
Bastian Balthazar Bux (Jason James Richter). The main character of the story, which would technically make him the hero, but as we’ll see, not only is he entirely unheroic, but he’s seemingly incapable of acting when no killer whales are around.
Nicole (Melody Kay). Bastian’s new stepsister, however little she may like it. Sullen and bitchy, but redeemingly cute. Her hobbies include stealing necklaces and watching MTV with no facial expressions at all.
Bastian’s Dad (Kevin McNulty). Supposedly named “Barney”. Can’t decide if he remembers anything about Fantasia from the previous film or not. Doesn’t get anywhere near as much screen time as…
Jane (Tracey Ellis). Bastian’s new step-mom. Focuses so desperately on getting Bastian to like her that she ignores all the ample evidence of supernatural hijinks happening around her.
The Childlike Empress (Julie Cox). No longer childlike, nor much of an empress.
Old Man of the Wandering Mountain/Mr. Koreander (Freddie Jones). In the former capacity, stands around waiting for things to happen. In the latter, sits around causing things to happen. Possibly the best make-up effects seen since Live and Let Die.
Slip (Jack Black). One of Jack Black’s earliest and (mercifully) most forgotten roles. Supposedly the villain, but sloppy writing and haphazard plotting make him more of a mild nuisance. His entire performance suggests he wants to finish this film as quickly as possible, so he can get back to his band.
[Editor’s Note: If you haven’t seen the previous two movies in the NeverEnding Story series, never fear! You can read all about them in the Agonizer, where I posted mini-recaps of The NeverEnding Story (1984) and The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter (1990), which should give you all the background you need about Bastian, Fantasia, the Childlike Empress, and what the hell an AURYN is. Also, a big thanks goes out to Jason Sartin for proofreading and editing this recap! —Albert]