Most of my reviews begin with a summary of the movie’s storyline, a critique of historical details, and then end with my final thoughts. For the recent movie The Defense of New Haven, I will invert this order and give my final thoughts first: see this movie. This is easily one of the best movies I have seen in a long time. A good storyline, good acting, interesting special effects, and hilarious humor are all present. 5/5 stars.
Alec is a young fellow who aids an agent of the City Defense Force (CDF) to escape from the evil Raiders. The agent is captured, but passes his message (and a training manual) on to Alec, with the task of getting it to the local CDF headquarters. Alec hitches a ride on a patrol boat and arrives with the message. While at the headquarters, he receives news that the Raiders have hit another building and all its occupants have mysteriously disappeared. When he learns that the building was the orphanage where he and his little sister used to live, the war becomes personal to Alec.
He succeeds in joining the CDF and soon becomes a model student. His days are spent in target practice with powerful crossbows, boat maintenance, and reading the textbooks assigned by Winston, the local CDF chief. But the manual that Alec received from the agent is dismissed with the comment “It was alright for its time.” That manual begins to baffle Alec, as a bookmark appears in a new section of it every day.
Throughout the ongoing operations between the CDF and the Raiders, Alec plays a conspicuous and important part. His gallantry prevents a box of explosives from being detonated, which leads to an important discovery of Raider tunnels. In quest of further information, he and his friend Pete travel upriver to a shady area, where they survive a brawl at Pelican Cove.
After this, Alec concocts a plan to find out who keeps putting bookmarks in his old manual and returns to CDF barracks after stating he would like a few days of leave. Before he can observe anything, he is caught red-handed by Louise, a CDF supervisor. All appearances tend to confirm one fact: Alec is a spy. He vehemently denies it to his friend Pete, but is permanently fired from the CDF.
What next? How will Alec continue the fight? Will the Raiders succeed? Which character is the Raiders’ spy in CDF headquarters anyway? I won’t spoil any more of the story for you; instead, you will have to watch it for yourself.
The acting is done by a group of children, many of whom are double or triple-cast. Mustaches or beards keep them separate (as well as add to the humor). For example,Winston the chief and Eddie the mechanic are both played by the same actor; however, Eddie sports a short one, and Winston a full gray beard.
It would have been easy to float this movie on cute kids, but the producers put time into creating an engaging storyline, interesting visuals, and even some action sequences. When all four elements (story, visuals, action, and cute kids) come together, the result is a magnificent movie. I would highly recommend that you acquire a copy and watch it—as soon as possible! 5/5 stars.