Movie Review: Shorts – Rainbow Luck


By Perry S. Chen


Have you ever wished that you could wish for anything in the world and it would come true? Toby Thompson, an 11-year-old boy and our main character/story-teller is going to tell you the story of how he got his true wish for friendship, but in a series of shorts assembled out of order.

“Shorts” is about how a magic, wish-granting rock with rainbow stripes went through the hands of many people, children and adults, and helped them find their courage and have adventures of a life time.

Toby lives in a strange community with strange people and a strange rock. One family of father and son would not come out of their plastic-covered house unless they have special yellow suites due to a sheer phobia of germs. Two overly bored brother and sister go on a staring match which lasted several days!

I noticed that Toby’s parents don’t seem to care about him a lot because they are addicted to their “black boxes,” multi-functional gadgets that could turn into computers, cell phones, etc. at will, from Mr. Black’s company, Black Box, Inc., where they worked for Mr. Black along with most of the other people in Black Falls.

Mr. Black is a harsh and brutal man, firing anyone at will. No wonder his daughter Helvetica is such a bully with a morbid attitude, who torments Toby with her daily routine of stuffing him into the trash can at the school.

I liked it when Toby wished for friends and got aliens. I also thought it was funny when the baby got telepathic abilities after she accidentally became super-smart from another wish. The funniest scene is when Toby’s mom wished she and her husband could be closer, and they did, uncomfortably close…

My favorite character is Toby, because he is an underdog, smart, brave, adventurous, and fights back with humor. My least favorite character is Mr. Black because he wants to have all the power in the Universe by bullying others.

I like the movie because of the great storyline, colorful characters, and the wonderful fantasy world. The movie is a combination of live action and animation. I think the animation is essential to the story because of the fantasy elements.

I give it three starfish because I thought they made it too tidy at the end when everyone became friends and model citizen. I thought the people in Black Falls would have gone after the rock after experiencing its mighty powers. Second, I wonder how “aliens” could speak English. Finally, I think the title “Shorts” is not descriptive enough. It doesn’t tell you what the story is about. I would name it “Rainbow Luck.”

If I could have the magic rock and be granted three wishes, I would wish for

  1. Grief and illness of the world all disappear,
  2. Everything in the universe appreciates and loves one another
  3. Unlimited wishes (if possible!)
“Shorts” is about friendship, redemption, greed, and forgiveness. Be careful with what you wish for.

Perry Chen is a 9-year-old columnist, movie critic and radio show host. He is in third grade at the Torrey Hills Elementary School. Perry’s reviews are available on his website: