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WORST WITCH - DVD Movie
Based on Jill Murphy's book, this charming movie is set in an English boarding school for witches--complete with orange and black school uniforms, broom-flying exercises, and potion assignments for lab. The incompetent student of the title, Mildred, is played by a fetching young Fairuza Balk. Diana Rigg is the nasty head teacher, Tim Curry the oddly idolized Grand Wizard, and TV's Facts of Life maven Charlotte Rae does double duty as the school's kindly dean and her evil witch twin, who's bent on taking over the school. Directed by Robert Young, this 68-minute video features less than state-of-the-art effects and several songs that stop the action--most bizarrely an outdoor assembly performance by Curry that turns into a weird music video. Still, preteen girls will identify with the beleaguered heroine who overcomes her wickedly snooty rival, a teacher who doesn't believe in her, and a band of dastardly witches and, of course, saves the day. Ages 6 and older --Kimberly Heinrichs