Attraction Review: Movieland Studios - The Craziest Theme Park In The World?

Ever since I got back from my trip to Italy a few weeks ago I've been thinking of a way to get down my thoughts about the truly unique and wild theme park that is Movieland Studios. If you've been to this park, you'll know that it's very much its own brand of insane and very difficult to put into words exactly what the park is about because honestly, I'm not sure it even knows itself. Regardless, please indulge me as I try to piece together for you what Movieland Studios is actually like to visit as a guest and what its deal is.

Movieland Studios is a theme park in Lake Garda and is park of the CanevaWorld Resort, a small group of attractions just a stone's throw away from the big boi of the area Gardaland. The Resort consists of the theme park, Movieland Studios, as well as a water park called Caneva Aquapark as well as various themed restaurants including Rock & Roll Restaurant, Safari Pizza, Margaritas Cocktail and Medieval Times. The place in general is's uncanny. 

The whole place has a general eerie vibe which I think comes from the fake that every single one of their attractions just mentioned is ripping off another attraction already in existence: Movieland Studios is ripping off Universal Studios, Caneva Aquapark is ripping off Typhoon Lagoon, Medieval Times is ripping off...Medieval Times. And it's so shameless, fonts and logos lifted straight from the source without a blink of an eye. It creates this parallel universe vibe this is kind of unsettling to be honest - niche reference alert but it reminds me a lot of that one episode of Sabrina the Teenage Witch from the 90s where she can't conjur any brand name products so she ends up with 'Popsi' instead of Pepsi. It LOOKS like the real thing on the surface but when you peer a little closer it's obvious this is a cheap imitation. 

So that sets the scene for you whilst you walk past this weirdness on your way from car park to park entrance, and once inside it's actually, kind of really fab? Cool looking statue of a retro film director with a typical 'main street' type entrance walkway with facades from a ton of different infamous movie properties (but mostly Back to the Future for some reason). This park's obsession with Hollywood/Americana here is very strange to me, especially considering Italy itself has a rich history of filmmaking that arguably would've made for a more interesting them overall. But to hell with it, bring on the Blockbuster rip-off rides I guess! 

The park actually opened in 2003, just a year after the infamously terrible Walt Disney Studios park opened at the Disneyland Paris Resort and subsequently bombed. I always get the vibe, especially in European theme parks, there's an obsession with that American/Hollywood aesthetic that has kind of died out in the real world, so it's a bit like going back in time and therefore give the entire park a run-down feel even though actually it's really not that bad in terms of general upkeep and tidiness. You can tell it's not Universal quality in terms of theming etc, but it's also not absolutely dire either - it's awkwardly somewhere in the middle but not across the board - some things are really excellent and some things are absolute travesties, which I'll explain in a bit. 

Coaster-wise...look if you're only interested in coasters then Caneva MovieLand or whatever it wants to currently call itself is really not for you. When I first visited in 2011 the park had two creds: Bront'O'Ring, a Go-Gator style kiddie coaster definitely NOT themed to Dino from the Flintstones and Bront'O'Jet, a Schwarzkopf that's been pulled from pillar to post since the early 90s and finally met it's final resting ground in this bizarre park on the shores of Lake Garda (it closed end of last year). Since then the park have also added Diabolik, a Vekoma Invertigo themed to an Italian comic book anti-hero. It's actually not too bad and the theming is kind of cool, if a little cardboard cut-out-y. It actually reminds me a lot of the Toon Lagoon midways at Universal's Islands of Adventure with all the cartoon strip facades. So yh, it has coasters but that's not really why you're here. 

Before I dive into the truly mental stuff (eg why you actually WANT to visit this park in the first place) I wanted to quickly talk about the themed 'lands'. Eg, there kind of isn't really any - the park as a whole goes for more of a general 'FILM' theme, and then for some reason there's a random Flintstones rip-off land at the back of the park that I'm sure those with fond memories of Ug Land at Alton Towers would appreciate. The park is small and there's not a lot of space, so instead of restrict themselves by sticking to a more traditional themed land approach they tend to just shove rides where they can and theme each individual ride. It actually works quite well, I didn't hate it at all. 

Right so if you've heard of Movieland Studios at all it's most likely because of two things. Firstly, their aforementioned wild disregard for intellectual property and trademarking laws, and secondly for their chaotic approach to H&S (eg, fuck it!) There are rides at this park that you literally would never find anywhere else because honestly, I don't legally think they're actually allowed to exist. I would love for somebody to explain to me how Movieland Studios get away with the things they do because I for one cannot understand how they get away with it, but hey ho it makes for some completely unique ride experiences so I'll allow it. Let me tell you about some of the craziness. 

Magma 2.1 - the name of this ride implies to existence of a Magma 2.0 or even a Magma 1.0, but honestly I'm not sure they ever existed, I think somebody in marketing went "this sounds cool" and slapped it on a sign. The ride itself is like Zufari meets a Studio Tram Tour but with 100% more chaos. We board a military style truck vehicle and proceed to screech off at very high speeds before continuing through a variety of different scenes including Tidal Wave-wetness level water canon explosions, rolling the truck backwards down a ramp into a lake, see-sawing road crossings, bridges collapsing with us still on it (yes this happens), electrical sparks and explosions whilst the vehicle is soaking wet and of course, fire. It's also worth mentioning at this point that the seats on this attraction do not have seatbelts or restraints of any kind - you essentially just have to hold on for dear life and hope for the bet. And honestly? It's excellent. It's such a thrilling ride and easily my favourite attraction in the park and worth visiting for alone. 

Pangea - I was so impressed with Pangeo. The premise of this ride is your typical Jurassic Park rip-off affair: we're going on a dino safari and some of them have escaped; chaos ensues. But here's the kicker - the Jeep-style vehicle you're in is completely off-track, off-road, and one lucky person from your group is in charge of driving. And when I say off road I MEAN off road - we're talking extremely steep inclines and declines, terrain so bumpy you feel like the vehicle is going to flip and huge puddles to splash through. It actually uses some kind of computer guided mechanism which means you don't have completely control of the vehicle but that doesn't reduce any of the terror - we saw many a vehicle who'd gone slightly too far off track ending up with one wheel in the air struggling to reverse and all sorts. Madness. The ride is actually pretty well themed and the dino animatronics are better than your averaged robot dinosaur theme park package. Again worth mentioning there are no seatbelts, which is especially terrifying if, like me, you end up sat on the elevated back seat of the truck where there's also no back gate on the car to prevent for flying off-board. Spicy. 

Kitt SuperJet - easily the wildest attraction concept in the park. Between a WaterWorld style (rip-off) stunt show guests can board speed boats that take them on a high-octane chase through the stunt set as terrorists (?) are in close pursuit. Essentially, imagine being on board a boat in a stunt show and you get a pretty good idea of what this attraction does. Zooming at high speeds across the pool including performing stunts like flying 360 degree turns, jumps and slaloming. This is also accompanied by many a water jet/geyser explosion - there is no way of getting off of this attraction dry. Out back there's also a ton more themed sets to buzz around including huge swinging theming pieces for our boat to manoeuvre around. And once again, say it with me now, there are no restraints! Guests must don a life-jacket just in case you do get thrown overboard but yep, it's another case of hold on tight and pray. This is particularly terrifying when you're flying through the air before crashing down into the waves your boat has just caused - pure, white-knuckle fear. And again, despite my eyebrows not possibly being able to raise any higher, it's awesome. 

I'm not going to spend all day going through each attraction at the park, especially as the three I've just highlighted are in my opinion the best the park has to offer, but I think these give you a pretty good idea of what the park is about. There aren't a ton of attractions in the park, but each one has it's own unique brand of what the fuck?! that makes them as memorable as they are terrifying. If you're a fan of theme park shows, Movieland has a bunch. Sadly due to the poor weather during our visit we weren't able to take any of them in but I'm told they're excellent too. 


I absolutely recommend visiting Movieland Studios at CanevaWorld in Lake Garda. There truly is nothing else like it in the world and it has to be seen to be believed. You can check out my vlog from our day there here if you'd like a bit more of a visualisation of what the park is like!

Have you been to Movieland Studios? What was your favourite ride? If you've not been, which ride do you think sounds the craziest? Let me know in the comments, and let's have a chat!

Talk later xoxo,


  1. If they're gonna rip off Islands Of Adventure, let's have a Dueling Dragons ripoff too please.