Saturday 14 May 2011

Project Disney: The 70s

It's been a while since I blogged about the progress of Project Disney. I've ended up doing what I was hoping wouldn't occur. I've watched a good few movies but not kept up with the blogging. I've decided to put the next batch up as single post covering the four movies of the 1970s.

First up was The Aristocats, the 1970 effort about a family of family of aristocratic cats who have a good life in the mansion with their rich owner. This is all turned upside down when the butler decides to kidnap them in an effort to benefit from their owner's fortune. In a similar vein to Lady and the Tramp, the well to do lead characters befriend a streetwise alley cat who helps to save the day. Actually when you think about it, it pretty much is the feline version Lady and the Tramp. It is this reason why I didn't really like it. It felt too samey.

Next up was Walt Disney's take on the classic tale of Robin Hood in 1973. I was looking forward to this as I remember it being one of my favourites as a kid. I have to admit, I found it quite poor watching it again. Just like The Aristocats, it was like watching a repeat of other Disney cartoons due to the duplications of characters and scenes as a result of the small production budget.

1977 was a double release year. In March The Many Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh was released. I think of all the releases on the list, this is the one I was most curious about. Winnie the Pooh is known in almost every household. It is probably the biggest franchise in terms of Disney merchandising. But, I have never seen, read or being involved in a story of Winnie the Pooh. I know of the different characters but not how they are related. The film is a selection of three previously released stories that have been linked together through an off screen narrator while following the books on the screen. I think the shorter stories works when you know there is continuity with the characters and because of this reason, the film was highly enjoyable. It was a good insight into the franchise and was highly enjoyable with only one flaw. Tigger must be the most annoying character to have ever been penned by a Disney animator.

Released in the summer of '77, The Rescuers completed the Walt Disney Classics slate for the decade. And I must say, they didn't go out on a bang. For me this summed up the decade. With the exception of Winnie The Pooh, I felt this decade was a lesson on how to live on past glories by rehashing old ideas.
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