Picks and Pans Review: Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas

updated 07/14/2003 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/14/2003 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Animated, with voices by Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michelle Pfeiffer, Joseph Fiennes

In this animated children's film, a character tells the movie's titular hero, "You're cute, but not that cute." The remark serves as a pithy assessment of Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas as well. Although kids will contentedly sit through it, rooting for Sinbad and laughing at the antics of Spike, his pet dog, this cartoon lacks the verbal snap and visual crackle that have made such recent animated wonders as Finding Nemo and Shrek pop.

Sinbad (Pitt) is a pirate who falls for his best friend's gutsy girl (Zeta-Jones) while undertaking a perilous sea voyage to recover a magical book stolen by a wicked goddess (Pfeiffer). The animation, blending the hand-drawn and digitally created, rarely knocks your turban off. The voice work by big names yields mixed results: Pfeiffer purrs deliciously as she plots destruction, Zeta-Jones pumps sufficient spunk into her lines, but Pitt rarely rises above adequate. (PG)

BOTTOM LINE: What becomes a Legend—not

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