The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

Unicorn Store Review: A Solid & Promising Debut For Larson

Brie Larson is set to have a busy year for 2019. Her superhero-origin film “Captain Marvel” is still in theaters and recently crossed $1 billion at the box office. She is also set to reprise her role in the upcoming superhero-crossover “Avengers: Endgame.” During spring break, Netflix added Larson’s directorial debut entitled “Unicorn Store” to its website. It had its world premiere two years ago at 2017’s Toronto International Film Festival and is now officially released for streaming on Netflix.

Photo taken from Netflix website
arson portrays a twenty-year-old failed artist named Kit. Larson had auditioned for the part five years ago and was later invited to direct.

So, how was the film? Is it a good start for Larson behind the camera? Let’s talk about it.

“Unicorn Store” tells the story of Kit (played by Brie Larson), who receives an invitation from a mysterious figure (played by Samuel L. Jackson). A figure that can fulfill a childhood dream of hers, which is to have her own real-life unicorn.

The film is a sweet and small, independent piece with some fun moments coupled throughout. All of which, transitions into my first positive which comes from Larson herself. She delivers a charming and relatable performance. Her character’s personality is a kid inside an adult’s body and has a mind full of wonder.

Photo taken from Netflix website
Larson and Jackson reunite for the comedic adventure. Their most recent collaboration was in “Captain Marvel” which is still playing in theaters.

The biggest and most obvious question is this: How was Larson as a filmmaker? Her directing skills show lots of potential and promise for her in the near future. She showcases her own flavor and style and is not trying to copy another, which I greatly appreciate.

The second half of the piece felt more grounded and balanced. The storytelling runs much smoother towards the end. Speaking of, the story itself is engaging and interesting to watch. You are never bored watching it. It also provides messages that are both relatable and important.

The messages it touches on are outsiders and the wanting to stay with your youth and not wanting to grow up. I can personally resonate with these themes and can understand the character’s emotions, which added a connection for myself and for other viewers as a result.  

Photo taken from Netflix website
The film held its world premiere at the 2017 TIFF. Netflix acquired distribution rights earlier this year.

No film is perfect, however,  that being said, the film has some small issues.

The first of which is the first half of the film. It chooses to focus more on the visual variety and lacks the needed depth and meaning to back up the visuals being presented. Because of this, the viewer is looking at a lot of style that holds no substance. The visuals ultimately become a prop rather than a story tactic.

The second of which is from Samuel L. Jackson. He was very underused and lacked a complete identity. His character was given as much as the story could give him, but the lack of characteristics made his character uninteresting. His performance was very wacky and expressive, which came across more forced than natural.

“Unicorn Store” is a solid start for Larson. It’s a sweet piece that holds a nice message and a very compelling and charming character in Kit. I look forward to seeing more from Larson behind the camera very soon.

“Unicorn Store” Rating: 7/10

View Comments (3)

Comments (3)

The Sage intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Sage does not allow anonymous comments, and The Sage requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Sage Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • A

    AndrewMay 1, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    Did she not have any other ideas for a movie? This movie is so bad. It required zero mental capacity to make it.

  • J

    JohnMay 1, 2019 at 8:42 am

    Brie Larson bad.

  • T

    TaylorApr 29, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    Hello Chris.

    I remember you telling me about this article idea and I like how you focused on Unicorn Store itself and not all of Brie Larson’s work. Personally, I loved this movie and I can even agree with your critiques. My only hangup is that I noticed how you used the adjectives, “sweet and nice” to describe her work. Those words seem almost diminishing of the hard work that goes into independent film making. As well as somewhat condescending as this movie is a fairly “feminine” movie, Female main character, a female centric background ect.

    As for Samuel L Jackson’s role in the movie. It was a relatively small role and I think added to his “mystery” that there wasn’t much more to him than his job at the Unicorn Store, that being said SLJ is one of my favorite actors of all time and I still didn’t feel like I needed more than what they gave. I’d also like to point out that you could possibly be feeling the way that many women feel when watching females in film– they are only a side character, not properly or fully portrayed and lacking substance. This has historically been the case for most female roles in film (obviously not all).

    I’m glad we are seeing what Brie Larson can not only do on camera but also behind the camera. I love that the list of independent and mainstream female directors is finally growing to a substantial length. This is the perfect example of the unique and beautiful perspectives women can bring to the table when given the opportunity. Thank you for the excellent review.