“Escape to Witch Mountain” is Disney’s take on the sci-fi novel of the same name. Like many of Disney’s classic live-action films, it is family-friendly but less impressive than the studio’s animated output. The studio obviously believes in this story because it spawned a sequel and two remakes. It is interesting but lacks the energy of a Disney musical, so don’t expect “Mary Poppins.” The special effects are a bit underwhelming when compared to today’s standard (or even “Star Wars,” which was released two years later), but it gets the point across. The film actually might be too scary for its target audience if it were any more realistic. It also has a good nostalgia factor so parents who enjoyed the film as children will likely enjoy it more than new viewers. The film is well-cast with a few Oscar-caliber actors (Eddie Albert, Ray Milland) and two strong child actors (Kim Richards and Ike Eisenmann). Their dialogue successfully creates curiosity about the mysterious background of the kids from start to finish. “Escape to Witch Mountain” is a humorous sci-fi film that can still entertain kids today, but it probably isn’t a film that will hold the attention of an adult watching without their family.
[Pictured: Eddie Albert's chemistry with the kids is probably my favorite part of the film]