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Pinocchio (SE)
BLU-RAY disk
03.30.2009 By: Sturdy
Pinocchio (SE) order
Director:
Hamilton Luske, Ben Sharpsteen

Actors:
Mel Blanc
Don Brodie
Walter Catlett

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
When a toymaker wishes upon a star that his latest puppet be given life, a fairy grants his wish. But when the boy meets a bad influence, he finds himself in Pleasure Island, where he learns some valuable life lessons about doing right and wrong.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
PINOCCHIO is a fantastic film that was groundbreaking and amazingÖat the time it was released. As much as I respect it as a film, the fact is that I donít necessarily enjoy it. Iíve said many times before that itís hard to review classic movies if you donít love them and this is another one of those cases for me. What makes it worse is that I decided to watch all the special features before I wrote this, so now I actually know and understand just how amazing this film was at the time.

But the issue still remains that I just donít enjoy the story of PINOCCHIO. Iíve always felt that the film is really two separate stories. We have the story of Pinocchio before and after he goes to Pleasure Island. Before he goes, we see the cute and playful side of Disney that weíve come to know and love. After he gets there, we see a dark and twisted side of Disney that weíre not really accustomed to. Theyíre both done very well, but I feel that they conflict with each other and make for an uneven film experience.

Of course, one of the great things about the film is how uncomfortable it makes the audience to follow Pinocchio through his miss-adventure and then come to find his redemption. The music is also a bit of a drag in the film and in my opinion, doesnít always match the tone of the film. I think todayís audiences will find the film to be a little slow and maybe even a little boring.

The Blu-ray version of this film is amazing. Iím consistently impressed with how much effort Disney puts into restoring their films, but theyíve really outdone themselves with PINOCCHIO. The film looks as colorful and vibrant as any of todayís animated features and it made for an overall enjoyable viewing experience. That, coupled with some great Disney special features, makes for a wonderful disc for fans of the film.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Leonard Maltin, Eric Goldberg and JB Kaufman: These guys are in love with the film and spend the entire commentary talking about the greatness of the film and trading inside jokes. This is also called the Cin3-explore option that has pop-up features that show up throughout the film. It rolls the film along and they never have downtime or long droughts of interesting facts. Itís very good and a must for fans of the film.

The Making of Pinocchio (55:58): In just under an hour, you will learn everything you want to know about Pinocchio. However, it features a lot of interviews from people that participated in the commentary, so youíll get a lot of repeat information. But itís a fantastic documentary on such an important film. It takes you from the story stages to the impact the film had on show business. Itís a really good featurette, regardless of whether or not you like the film.

Deleted Scenes (10:23): It turns out that some deleted sequences were found during the restoration of the film and they walk us through some of the old drawings and have some voice work recite the dialogue for us. Itís pretty neat and well worth a look.

Gepettos Then and Now (10:57): This is a look at different toymakers around the world and how the craft of toy making has changed over the years. They found some interesting toy makers to focus on and it was pretty interesting to see how they make their toys and what kind of toys they make.

The Sweatbox (6:25): The Sweatbox is what they dubbed the room where Disney would view the dailies on a projector. Itís called a ďsweatboxĒ because a) it was hot and b) there was no air conditioning. This is a nice, quick look at the process and what it was like for the animators of the time.

Live Action Reference Footage (9:58): Itís not often that we get live action footage of the inner workings of Disney studios, but thatís exactly what this is. It was really cool to see and according to the narrator, this footage was used to train new animators. This is a very cool featurette.

Gepettos Then and Now (10:57): This is a look at different toymakers around the world and how the craft of toy making has changed over the years. They found some interesting toy makers to focus on and it was pretty interesting to see how they make their toys and what kind of toys they make.

There are some Previews, Trivia Games, Carnival Games and aMusic Video
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
This PINOCCHIO Blu-ray is one of the better releases weíve seen on the format. Although Iím not the biggest Pinocchio fan, thereís no denying itís place in film history or the quality of this disc. Given the quality special features and pristine picture quality, this is a safe bet for Disney fans.
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5:18AM on 05/24/2012
Wow - I remember loving this movie, but it has been 20 years since I have watched it. I now want to check it out again to see how I feel. The extras sound amazing
Wow - I remember loving this movie, but it has been 20 years since I have watched it. I now want to check it out again to see how I feel. The extras sound amazing
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