Behind the Scenes: Pinocchio

Posted on January 12, 2017 at 8:00 am

One of the greatest animated films of all time is Disney’s Pinocchio, possibly the most beautiful hand-drawn film of all time. It is remarkable to think that it was made just three years after the groundbreaking but much simpler “Snow White.” It also has one of the all-time classic Disney soundtracks, with songs like “I Got No Strings” (featured in last year’s “Suicide Squad”) and the song that is still the Disney theme: “When You Wish Upon a Star.”

The Signature Edition is available today on Digital HD and Disney Anywhere, and will be out on Blu-Ray January 31, 2017, featuring extras like these:

Walt’s Process

Pinocchio – Creating Pleasure Island

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List: Movies About Fish (and Other Marine Creatures)

Posted on June 14, 2016 at 3:15 pm

This week’s release of “Finding Dory” is a good reason to revisit some great movies about fish — and other creatures who live under water, starting with the movie where we first met Dory.

1. Finding Nemo is my favorite Pixar film, an epic journey filled with adventure and discovery encompassing the grandest sweep of ocean vastness and the smallest longing of the heart. It is gorgeous to look at, funny, touching, warm-hearted and inspiring, and it has unforgettable characters like Crush and Nigel.

2. The Incredible Mr. Limpet Don Knotts (Barney Fife on “The Andy Griffith Show”) plays a shy, fish-loving bookkeeper who magically turns into a fish and helps the US military by reporting on enemy ship movements.

3. Dolphin Tale Real life rescue dolphin Winter is saved by the creation of a prosthetic tail and her friendship with a lonely boy. The original and the sequel are great family films.

4. Flipper The 60’s TV series inspired a movie starring “Crocodile Dundee’s” Paul Hogan.

5. Free Willy A foster kids befriends a whale in this heartwarming drama.

6. Pinocchio Disney’s most gorgeously animated film from the hand-drawn era features a whale named Monstro who swallows the little puppet and his conscience, Jiminy Cricket.

7. Ponyo The brilliant animator Hayao Miyazaki was inspired by “The Little Mermaid” fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen to create this story of a little fish girl who wants adventure and her concerned sea king father.

8. The Spongebob Squarepants Movie The aquatic denizens of Bikini Bottom come to the big screen in this movie version of the popular television series.

9. The Little Mermaid This Disney classic has a romantic story, great songs, an unforgettable villain, and the title character’s BFFs, including a crab and a fish.

10. Jaws. Nothing more needs to be said.

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For Your Netflix Queue Neglected gem


Posted on March 9, 2009 at 2:00 pm

Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Profanity: None
Alcohol/ Drugs: Children smoke cigars
Violence/ Scariness: Tense and scary scenes including characters being swallowed by a whale and apparent death
Diversity Issues: None
Date Released to Theaters: 1940
Date Released to DVD: January 30, 2017 ASIN: B01M105H8W

Copyright Disney 2017
Copyright Disney 2017
This week Disney is releasing a glorious new edition of its most most gorgeous, splendid, and fully realized of all of its hand-drawn animation classics before the use of photocopiers and computers. Every detail is brilliantly executed, from the intricate clocks in Geppetto’s workshop to the foam on the waves as the enormous whale Monstro thrashes the water. It also has one of Disney’s finest scores, featuring “When You Wish Upon a Star,” which has become the Disney theme song. “I’ve Got No Strings,” “Give a Little Whistle,” and “An Actor’s Life for Me” are also memorable. It is the classic story about the wooden puppet whose nose grows when he tells a lie and has to almost turn into a donkey before he can become a real boy, told with endless imagination and beauty, a must-see for all families.

This new edition has some great behind-the-scenes extras.

“Pinocchio” is a natural for the first discussions with kids about telling the truth (especially admitting a mistake) and not talking to strangers. Talk to them, too, about how to find their own conscience and listen to it as if it were Jiminy Cricket. The trip to Pleasure Island may also lead to a discussion of why things that feel like fun may be harmful, and the difference between fun and happiness.

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