you're familiar with the cycle of a Disney Channel show,
you know that the surest sign your favorite has full support
is when Disney commissions an extended "movie." Recently,
this milestone hit one of my daughter's favorite shows,
The Wizards of Waverly Place. When Disney announced that
they would release an extended edition of the televised
movie on DVD, I knew it was time to turn my 10-year-old
daughter loose on reviewing it. Let's face it; they didn't
make the movie for me. So here's Allie:
The Wizards of Waverly Place has
magic. It's really funny and serious at the same time, so
it's like an action-packed adventure, even for adults. Mom
Alex Russo (Selena Gomez) always gets into
trouble. Since she's an irresponsible teen-ager, her brother
Justin (David Henrie) has to help her out of her problems.
Though not as important to most of the plots, they have
a younger brother, Max (Jake T. Austin).
Their dad (David DeLuise) is a wizard but
he had to give up his powers because he married a normal
person. However, his kids still have wizarding powers. They
have to hide them from normal people, and luckily their
powers are in their wands, so they have to use those in
order to use their powers. Ordinary people cannot use the
For the movie, Alex doesn't want to go
on the big family vacation. Though she was going to stay
at her friend Harper's house, Alex's mom grounds her because
she used magic to take the subway train to Paris, France,
so she could go to a girl's birthday party. So she has to
go on the vacation.
Once there, she wants to do stuff that
she wants to do, but her parents took away all the wands.
Alex has a forbidden spell book that allows her to use her
powers without having her wand. For one certain spell, however,
she needs a wand to be there to add juice to it.
Justin sneaks away the family wand and
Alex asks if she can use it for a spell that will make their
parents be permissive for six hours. She and her mom have
a big argument, and instead Alex casts the Mishap Spell
- she accidentally wishes that her parents had never met.
So now Justin and Alex have to find the
Stone of Dreams to undo the spell before time catches up
and turns them to dust.
It's a really big mistake that Alex makes,
too big for a half-hour show. There are also a lot more
special effects than a regular episode, including a tornado
and a wizarding competition.
In the extended edition (not shown on the
Disney Channel), there are more scenes of Mom and Dad meeting
other people, with the kids casting spells to keep them
from falling in love with someone else. Clothes switch,
Dad turns into a shark, and the parents get turned into
small children. All that was added for the extended, and
it's pretty funny.
On the DVD, they include a Behind-the-Scenes
feature with Selena, David and Jake, showing how they made
the movie. Jake actually wants to direct. They gave us a
lot of looks at the special effects, which I think is really
cool, as I like looking behind the scenes. Another DVD extra
covers animal training, which was cool because the main
birds were Scarlet Macaws. We like those in our house.
It's a fun movie for little kids up to
teen-agers. Then again, Mom liked it, too.