Questioning Everything Disney Little To Much

Archive for June, 2018

Top Ten Cutest Disney Kids

Disney has created some cute kids over the years, but here is a ranking of my Top Ten Cutest Disney Kids



10.images8HESWXIN

Baby Mine, Dumbo

9. images2172DK3Z

The Princesses of New Orleans, Tiana and Lottie

8. images100VF4DN

Jack Jack Incredible

7. imagesGIY5VUM9

The Prince of The Jungle, Tarzan

6. imagesGYVPG829

The Daughters of Triton Alana, Arista, Aquata. Ariel, Adella, Attina and Andrina

5. hqdefault

Daughter of Land and Sea, Princess Melody

4. imagesXQI1TUEM

Best Friends Since Birth, Hercules and Pegasus

3. maxresdefault

The Lost Princess Rapunzel

2. imagesKLTMPY52

The Frozen Princesses Elsa and Anna

  1. untitled

The Curious and Brave, Princess Merida

Advertisements

Image

Fan Art Tuesday

bft.png


Cinderella Inspection

Alrighty! I am having a hard time ripping video footage of Disney’s Cinderella because the all-mighty Disney is a step ahead. There is anti-burning properties on the re-release, special-edition discs, which is completely understandable. Therefore, I am going to display my thoughts here and just find an alternative method for my video project.

Time to just dive right in!

In the very beginning, it is explained how Cinderella’s mother dies, and her father felt is was in Cinderella’s best interest to have a replacement mother. I can understand this premise to some extent. I mean, he can be the best father in the world but it is close to impossible to teach Cinderella how to be a woman, since  of course, he is not a woman. Or may be the situation is deeper. May be the father worked all day and Cinderella was left alone. As you can see from the screenshot, Cinderella is definitely not poor, but she is nowhere close to being as rich as the king. So, I do see a slight justification to why the father shopped around for a new wife, but on an emotional level this is the recipe for disaster. Cinderella’s mother just died, and instead of the father adjusting to the life of a widow and being strong for Cinderella, he decides to bury the past – literally – and moved on to marry Lady Tremaine.

Lady Tremaine is a stern woman with two daughters of her own. What happen to her children’s father is never explained, but does conjure up more suspense for her character because it is revealed that Lady Tremaine despises Cinderella. We are talking about a devilish type of hate. She cannot stand the thought that Cinderella is so naturally beautiful. Cinderella, being so naive, couldn’t even fathom the thought of anyone being jealous of her, so when the father died and left her in the demon pit,  Cinderella simply accepted her new life with her step family.  Of course, this raises up more questions about the father.

I can understand wanting to find a new bride, but why pick Tremaine? I’m sure she was nice at first. I know there are people who are masters of deception, but one thing is clear. It is extremely difficult to hide your true self for long. It comes out in clues. For example, I’m sure if Cinderella came into the room, Lady Tremaine would give her a specific look. A look designed just for her. Why wouldn’t the father pick up on these subtleties?  Kids are more keen on these situations, so why didn’t Cinderella pick up on them and tell her father? Okay two steps have to happen before I can move on with my analysis. First, stop making excuses (or filling in huge plot holes) for the father. Second, analyze Cinderella’s beauty as power because it is. Beauty, power, perception are all inter-related. Cinderella’s power will win her a Disney ending.

It was no time when we see Cinderella in her life of heavy chores and heavy demands. Of course, this is set up so you feel a sense of sympathy and side with the protagonist…or at least thank the heavens that you’re not in her situation; (this is a taste of how the step sisters think). However if you really challenge what you see, you’ll catch that Cinderella is very strong minded. She cooks full course meals for four people including a cat, she cleans the entire house (which includes upstairs, downstairs, at kitchen, four bedrooms, a barn, and so much more!), and she babysits the animals in the barn. She does all this, and still manages to stay grounded. This is what Lady Tremaine especially despised. She wants to see Cinderella burn because Tremaine is a weak woman.

By the way…

There is a bunch of mice sprinkled throughout the movie to, I guess,  liven the mood….AHHHHHHH! Okay, breathe! It’s for the kids….kids of the 50s. Moving on!

Unlike the mice, the cat and the dog actually serve a purpose to understanding the story. The cat is the pet of Lady Tremaine’s and of course carries her attributes. Just like her master, the cat clearly does not like Cinderella yet loves what Cinderella can offer her. (This is one of the many reasons why Tremaine is weak, but I don’t want to waste time dissecting her since this article is an attempt to better understand Cinderella). The dog is the pet of Cinderella’s, and you guessed it! He carries Cinderella’s attributes. Much like the dog, Cinderella has this odd sense of loyalty. Why do I say this? Hello! The light are out, everyone’s asleep – runaway and never turn back. She must know the neighborhood and the people in it since she grew up there. Run! But she doesn’t. Cinderella stays put. She accepts her life even though she is now very aware that she becomes a slave. Oh yes! You must remember that Lady Tremaine is living in Cinderella’s house. Cinderella’s loyalty is tied to taking care of her house, where all her memories lay…

Even though Cinderella is able to stay grounded through her blind yet loyal obligations, she still feels the depression that she should feel. Notice the color scheme when she is looking out her window at the castle. Her location is very dark and almost haunting. The castle is very bright and colorful. This doesn’t mean that the castle is a wonderful and peaceful sanctuary. It just means that Cinderella perceives the castle to be a wonderful and peaceful sanctuary, which is why she makes it her dream to visit one day.

Cinderella gets her wish. With the help of her fairy god mothers, she is able to get all dressed up and go to the ball at the palace. Of course, the Prince takes a liking to her, because as I mentioned before, Cinderella is a strong mind -well  metaphorically speaking. The Prince is attracted to her uniqueness. Cinderella admires the Prince has well, but I get this feeling that her attraction to the Prince is no different from the other women in town. She is attracted to the fantasy that the Prince can offer, but regardless! Cinderellas knows that marriage is her golden ticket to happiness…or is it?

Let me take a detour for a moment before we reach the conclusion. It is clear that Cinderella fears her step mother. One look from Lady Tremaine, and Cinderella falls into submission. It is my belief that Tremaine did something very traumatic to Cinderella…well beyond the psychological abuse. I’ll let you use your imagination to what happened, but the fact is Cinderella is petrified by her step mother. Therefore, she makes sure she marries the Prince. You’ll notice in the ending that Cinderella will  stopped at nothing to try on the glass slipper. In Cinderella’s mind, the Prince is her only way out of her hell.

So does Cinderella finally have her Happy-Ever-After? In Disney terms, she does. In actuality, this question is up for debate! The fact is, Cinderella went from one supporting role to another. In her marriage, she doesn’t have to cook or clean or complete any other household chores. Now she as other pressures. She is in the public’s eye because of the Prince. She is expected to maintain the traditions of the royal family and maintain a strong image for the political  gain. This is not pleasing. After all, Princess Diana was rebellious for a reason. Basically, Cinderella seems to have sacrificed her individuality for a slightly better life. But her sympathy card has run dry since she chose this life.

Overall Nostalgic Impressions:

I surprisingly enjoyed this film. I popped the movie in the Blu-Ray player expecting to dread it, but no! I even found myself in a trance as I watched Cinderella’s character slowly develop around itself. This is the big shock because I HATE Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. It is my least favorite Disney film simply because I hard to watch Beast interact with both Belle and her father. However, Cinderella was tolerable. It could be because the movie is short and vague and someone like me, who bursting with creative analysis, can make story to fill in the gaps. Hmmmm, I wonder….


Image

Fan Art Tuesday

1409910893081_wps_54_emmanuel_viola_s_illustra


Disney Moms

Bambi’s Mom:

Was killed by a hunter, leaving Bambi alone for the coming winter.

The Queen of Atlantis, Kida’s Mom:
Take by the Heart of Atlantis during when the island was sinking into the sea
Queen Athena, Ariel’s Mom:
Killed by Pirates when Ariel was three, leaving King Triton to raise seven daughters alone.
Tarzans Mom (and Dad):
Killed by the Leopard Sabor when Tarzan was an infant.
The Queen (and King) of Arendelle, Elsa and Anna’s Mom (and Dad):
Killed in a storm that sank their ship into the sea.
The Queen of Corona, Rapunzels Mom:
Searched for her daughter for 18 years after Rapunzel was stolen by Mother Gothel.
Fa Li, Mulan’s Mom:
Worried for her daughters future, and worried for her daughters life when she ran away to join the army.
Eudora, Tiana’s Mom:
Tried to get her daughter to not only work hard for her dream, but to live in the moment, and enjoy life now.
Wendy Maura Angela Darling, Mother to Peter Pan and The Lost Boys, and Mother to Jane and Danny Darling:
As a child, she became the mother (if only temporarily) of Peter Pan and The Lost Boys. When she grew up, she had children of her own, and became the mother to Jane and Danny.
Coral, Nemo’s Mom:
Died trying to save Nemo and his siblings from a barracuda attack.
Mary Darling, Wend, John and Micheal’s mother:
Even though she did not believe in fairy tales, she tried from very early on to get her children to have a little faith and trust in their father, and never lose their “pixie dust”.
Jumbo, Dumbos Mom:
Taken from Dumbo when she tried to protect him.
Helen Parr/Elastigrl/Mrs. Incredible, Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack’s mom:
This woman stretched every which way for her family. She gave her hero work to raise her kids, and tried her best to keep her family happy. This woman is one of the best models for the perfect mom.
Queen Elinor, Merida’s Mom:
While she wasn’t very good at showing it to her daughter, she cared deeply about her. She only wanted hat was best for Merida, and wanted her future secure.
Mother Gothel, Raised Rapunzel for 18 years:
While she stole Rapunzel for her hair and kept her in a tower for 18 years, she did raise her. She bathed, changed, and nursed her for 18 years. And while mentally, this wasn’t a good situation for Rapunzel, Rapunzel was healthy. We can see that Mother Gothel clearly didn’t starve her, or physically abuse her. To a degree, she did take care of Rapunzel. If only for her hair.
Queen Leah, Aurora’s Mom:
Gave up being with her child for 6 years in order to try and protect her.

Image

Fan Art Tuesday

imagesuegq2dyo.jpg


Top Ten Ridiculous Disney Movie Flops

The Disney Studio in Burbank has produced 52 animated features* since Snow White was released in 1937. But the company’s founder, Walt, only oversaw nineteen** of them before his death in 1966.

Walt was a creative and entertainment genius, not only in his own right, but also amassing a trove of talented artists who produced some of the longest standing film classics of the previous century. However, during Walt’s lifetime only a few of his animated features made a profit at the box office. The studio was often on the verge of bankruptcy.

Together with his brother Roy, Walt managed to run a multi-million dollar entertainment empire with marketing prowess to be envied. Long before home video was invented, they re-released each feature every seven years, so a new audience could enjoy them. So eventually, every film made money. But initially, most of Walt’s efforts were flops. Here is a list of his biggest box office bombs.

While box office and budget numbers are scarce for some of these films, their placement on the list is a reflection of profits and losses as listed in the company’s annual report the year of the film’s release.

These are all films I love, and continue to watch to this day, and it’s honestly unfortunate that most of them are underappreciated.

10: Dumbo- 1941

Dumbo-Movie-03

It’s not really fair to list this little gem of a film as a failure. Over the years it has garnered millions in box office receipts, not to mention home video sales and rentals. But in 1941 and ’42, though well received, it had an uphill battle helping the Mouse House get out of the red. At a modest budget of between 800 and 900 thousand dollars, it is Disney’s least expensive film. It was Walt’s 4th feature, following the very expensive Snow White ($1.8 mil), Pinocchio ($2.5 mil) and Fantasia ($2.3 mil). It had great pre-release buzz and was all set to appear on the cover of Newsweek for its release, but was displaced by the events at Pearl Harbor. With the European markets cut off, the flying elephant was able to make back its cost, but just barely.

9: The Sword in the Stone- 1963

20100310100857Swordinthestoneposter

It is quite possible that the only reason this classic made any money at all is because it was in the post-Sleeping Beauty era of slash and burn budgets (more on that later). Audiences seemed to like the Arthurian tale more than the critics did, but the boy who would be king was a sluggish performer. At the time, the kids were all wanting to see those zany Merlin Jones movies with Tommy Kirk and (yowza) Annette Funicello!

8: The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad- 1949

Mr-Toads-Wild-Ride-Movie

This was the last of Walt’s compilation films. Made up of two stories, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and The Wind and the Willows, it got a lukewarm reception from audiences and critics alike. Over the years, it has been edited into two separate films and released in a number of different formats, Ichabod being a Halloween favorite. Of course, Mr. Toad inspired the popular ride at Disneyland and Disneyworld, where you follow Toad’s adventures… ending up in Hell. Seriously… You rode a car through Hell, complete with dancing demons. The Florida version was replaced a few years ago by a Winnie the Pooh romp that skips the jaunt into the underworld.

7: Make Mine Music- 1946

Make Mine Music Poster

After the Government helped to fund two compilation films that were moderately successful (Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros), Walt continued the trend on his own. They were relatively inexpensive and easy to produce, which was important in the first few years after the War. Two of the segments, Claire de Lune and Blue Bayou, were leftover concepts that weren’t used in Fantasia. However, MMM didn’t turn many heads or drive the post-war crowds into the theaters. Individual segments (like Casey at the Bat, Peter and the Wolf, and Little Toot) were eventually released separately on television and other formats, and over the years Walt made his money back.

6: Pinocchio- 1940

Pinocchio-1940-Poster

Following the hugely successful Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Walt produced the ambitious and artistically superior story of the little wooden boy with the built in lie detector. Its budget was nearly double Snow White’s, but it didn’t originally charm the masses as much as the Princess movie did. And wishing upon a star couldn’t fix the European markets getting cut off by the growing expanse of the Third Reich. It recouped its cost by a cool million, but the studio was still having trouble staying ahead of its growing debt.

Since the little puppet made of pine became a real boy, it has grossed over $100 million.

5: Bambi- 1942

Theatrical2

I know, I know. This is now one of the cornerstone films of the Magic Kingdom, but it took a while to find its place on the positive side of the balance sheets. Walt knew he was in trouble financially with this one. He kept trimming it down, making it as lean as possible, not only story-wise, but also easier to complete on time and on budget. Yes, it was one of the wartime films that suffered from a lack of overseas distribution and the fact that audiences just weren’t in the mood to see a movie about a young Prince of the Forest getting shot at. James Cagney’s Yankee Doodle Dandy was all the rage that year. Go figure.

On a side note, the film was art directed by Chinese immigrant Tyrus Wong (who turned 102 this year). Walt hand picked him, saying that his paintings did more than look like a forest, they felt like a forest. So much for being a racist bastard.

4: Peter Pan- 1953

Peterpanrko

This adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s tale of the boy who wouldn’t grow up should’ve done better at first. Based on well-known and loved source material, it was a shoe-in with audiences. But it just didn’t land. Critics were merciless over Walt’s break with certain traditions. For instance, Tinkerbell was a sexpot, while she had always been played by a faceless spotlight in the stage versions. And what’s this? A boy is portraying Peter Pan? He was always played by a girl before! No, Walt, you just didn’t do it right. No wonder it eked its way to regain its $4 million budget.

 

3: Alice in Wonderland- 1951

Alice

Alice came out on the heels of the hugely popular Cinderella (1950). Cindy had pretty much saved the studio from bankruptcy after its postwar slump, then Alice nearly sank it again. Maybe the surreal imagery was too much for a pre-’60s America. Maybe audiences were confused and went to see the British version that was released the same year. Or maybe Walt was right when he later commented that Alice lacked heart.

Like the White Rabbit, the profits were late, but better late than never.

2: Sleeping Beauty- 1959

How-Disney-Princess-Works-15

This production was lavish on a grand scale. Walt decided to make the film in CinemaScope. The graphic style created by painter Eyvind Earle was insanely detailed and precise. It was four years in production at an unheard of cost of just over $6 million! However, At the same time, Walt was becoming more and more involved with his theme park project, thus leaving the films without a shepherd. Princess Aurora was meant to entrance the masses with her beauty, but instead she sort of put them to sleep. What do you expect when the entire cast starts yawning contagiously? Snoozefest! Hopefully, you woke up in time to see the kick-ass dragon fight at the end. On its initial release, the fair Briar Rose only managed to dream up $5.3 million.

As a result of this over indulgent spending, the following film, 101 Dalmatians, had roughly half the budget …and grossed over twice as much!

Since that time, SB has earned a respectable $36+ million. Sort of a sleeper hit, you might say.

1: Fantasia- 1940

Fantasia (1940)

Now seen as Walt’s masterpiece, this wondrous exercise in abstract imagery nearly ruined the studio. It started out as a short, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, but the music alone (conducted by the renowned Leopold Stokowski) cost three times the budget of the average Mickey Mouse cartoon. Rather than cut his losses, Walt upped the budget to $2.3 million and pushed ahead with his grand experiment, turning it into a feature length film. Most of his movies ran about 83 minutes, but Fantasia is over two hours. Not only were the visual effects on a massive scale, Walt’s technicians invented a multitrack stereo surround system some thirty years before THX was ever thought about. However, most theaters did not want to invest in the expensive speaker upgrade. After all, this was 1940 and the country was still recovering from the Great Depression, plus a World War was brewing in Europe, so the film only played as intended in a handful of select markets. Lackluster reviews didn’t help its tepid reception either. By the end of the decade, after multiple re-releases, it finally earned back most of its cost. It wasn’t until the 1960s when a drug-addled youth audience rediscovered the film that it started making money. Peace, love and animation. Groovy.

*Snow White and the Seven Dwarves through Wreck-It Ralph. This number does not include the live action films with animated segments, like Song of the South, So Dear to my Heart, Mary Poppins, etc. It also does not include the features produced by Disney Toon Studios (e.g. A Goofy Movie), Pixar, ImageMovers Digital (e.g. A Christmas Carol), or stop motion films (e.g. Frankenweenie).

** This includes The Jungle Book even though it was completed and released the year following Walt’s death. Walt was heavily involved in its production. Though The Aristocats was in development before Walt died, it was not very far along and the final product bears little resemblance to where he left off.


Image

Fan Art Tuesday

tumblr_mmjyhntxvj1qea0tko1_5001


The magical kingdom gets a makeover! Teen artist transforms Disney’s most beloved animal characters into people

Alaina Bastian, a teenage artist from Provo, Utah, created the illustrations for her Deviant Art page

  • Characters she humanized include Simba and Nala from The Lion King as well as Baloo and Bagheera from The Jungle Book

A young illustrator and dedicated Disney fan has used her artistic skills to morph her favorite animal characters into humans.

Teenage artist Alaina Bastian from Provo, Utah, created the animations for her Deviant Art page s0alaina and later posted them to Bored Panda, explaining that she wanted to ‘humanize’ the characters by using ‘their unique personalities’ as inspiration for their appearances. 

‘As an aspiring artist I have always loved Disney. My favorite [artistic trend] has been seeing Disney animals portrayed as humans!’ the young artist told Seventeen

A new look: Teenage artist Alaina Bastian from Provo, Utah, has imagined several beloved Disney animals as human beings in a new image series

A new look: Teenage artist Alaina Bastian from Provo, Utah, has imagined several beloved Disney animals as human beings in a new image series

A new look: Teenage artist Alaina Bastian from Provo, Utah, has imagined several beloved Disney animals as human beings in a new image series

Look familiar? The young artist, who posts her work on Deviant Art, aimed to use the unique personalities of the characters for her interpretations

Look familiar? The young artist, who posts her work on Deviant Art, aimed to use the unique personalities of the characters for her interpretations

True to time: Alaina was also careful to stay true to the eras and countries in which the films were set

True to time: Alaina was also careful to stay true to the eras and countries in which the films were set

‘I’ve loved all the artists’ renditions of these characters. But I began to notice that there was a loss of key features of the characters that made them less recognizable.’

With that in mind, Alaina writes on her Bored Panda post, she went about drawing the characters ‘in the styles of their movies’ to keep the renditions more realistic to the tales she was revamping.

Among the beloved films she covered were Lady and the Tramp – where she imagined the privileged Lady as a woman with curly auburn hair and a gold dress and the stray mutt Tramp as a strapping grey-haired man in suspenders – and The Lion King, whose lead characters Simba and Nala are imagined in a similar manner to the musical based on the film.

Bit of a borrow: Alaina took some inspiration from the costumes for The Lion King musical in her humanized versions of Simba and Nala
Bit of a borrow: Alaina took some inspiration from the costumes for The Lion King musical in her humanized versions of Simba and Nala

Bit of a borrow: Alaina took some inspiration from the costumes for The Lion King musical in her humanized versions of Simba and Nala

Bare necessities: When approaching the 1967 Jungle Book movie, the artist took note that the movie was set in the Indian forest

Final result: Panther Bagheera and bear Baloo are turned into a pair of Indian buddies hanging out in the woods

Final result: Panther Bagheera and bear Baloo are turned into a pair of Indian buddies hanging out in the woods

For her version of the Aristocats main characters, Duchess and Thomas O’Malley, Alaina ran into difficulties over the latter’s ‘bulky build’, but ended up drawing a strapping, broad-shouldered redhead in a straw hat fawning over the platinum blonde-haired Duchess, whose locks are cut short in a curly 1910s bob.

Given that 1967’s The Jungle Book is based deep in an Indian forest, Alaina gave Mowgli’s guardians Baloo and Bagheera a distinctly South Asian look with Baloo in a small vest – not unlike the one worn by Abu in Aladdin – and Bagheera in a sort of Nehru jacket and turban in dark colors.

Computer animation movies were not out of bounds for the young artist either, who also created the John Travolta-voiced dog Bolt and his cat companion Mittens into emo teens. 

A different vibe: The characters from 2008's Bolt are imagined as emo teens in Alaina's renderings
A different vibe: The characters from 2008's Bolt are imagined as emo teens in Alaina's renderings

A different vibe: The characters from 2008’s Bolt are imagined as emo teens in Alaina’s renderings

Strange cast mates: The characters of Tantor (L) and Terk (R)  from 1999's Tarzan were also transformed to look human

Strange cast mates: The characters of Tantor (L) and Terk (R)  from 1999’s Tarzan were also transformed to look human

Out of the rain forest: Alaina thought that some of the existing humanized versions of Disney animals were 'missing key features of the characters that made them less recognizable'

Out of the rain forest: Alaina thought that some of the existing humanized versions of Disney animals were ‘missing key features of the characters that made them less recognizable’

Terk and Tantor, the gorilla and elephant from 1999’s Tarzan are morphed into a young African woman with an upwards-sweeping hairstyle and a hulking man in just a strip of cloth and a wisp of hair on his head.

Another movie ‘humanized’ by the artist was Oliver and Company, whose characters Dodger, Oliver, and Rita were turned into a pair of shaggy-haired adults and a baseball cap-wearing kid.

In another combination post, Alaina took on the horses from several popular Disney films – each with their own unique personalities despite many of them not having the ability to talk. Included in this illustration is Samson from Sleeping Beauty, Pegasus from Hercules, Frou Frou from Aristocats, and Khan from Mulan.

The young artist, who hopes to one day score a job doing character design at an animation company like Disney or Dreamworks, added to Seventeen that she has a few other renderings up her sleeve, including ones of Bambi as well as Minnie and Mickey Mouse.

Horsing around: Alaina also humanized famous Disney horses including (l-r) Samson from Sleeping Beauty, Pegasus from Hercules, Frou Frou from Aristocats, and Khan from Mulan

Horsing around: Alaina also humanized famous Disney horses including (l-r) Samson from Sleeping Beauty, Pegasus from Hercules, Frou Frou from Aristocats, and Khan from Mulan

Oliver and Company characters Dodger (in red scarf), Oliver (in orange), and Rita (second from left and far right) were turned into shaggy-haired adults and a little boy in a baseball cap
Oliver and Company characters Dodger (in red scarf), Oliver (in orange), and Rita (second from left and far right) were turned into shaggy-haired adults and a little boy in a baseball cap

Oliver and Company characters Dodger (in red scarf), Oliver (in orange), and Rita (second from left and far right) were turned into shaggy-haired adults and a little boy in a baseball cap.