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Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
DVD disk
10.08.2004 By: Professor Steve
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs order
David Hand

Walt Disney
Snow White


star Printer-Friendly version
Old-school Walt Disney animators tell the story of a jealous evil queen who attempts to knock off her beautiful stepdaughter, Snow White, who escapes into the forest and bunks up with the Seven Dwarfs. Chaos ensues as the queen disguises herself as a witch and entices Snow White into biting a poison apple that puts her into an everlasting sleep - only to later be awakened by the kiss of her beloved Prince.
Snow White is simply a landmark in movie history. I can't image what it must have felt like back in 1937 to walk into a movie theater and see the FIRST full-length animated film ever made. In color no less! Some people have likened it to seeing Star Wars for the first time - and rightly so. It's also a landmark of the Walt Disney empire, being his first crowning achievement that started the whole animated film industry and made him a household name. The whole Disney style of animation is great, especially the animal characters. In fact, many of the animals you see in this movie become major players later on: Bambi, Chip and Dale, etc...you'll recognize many. Even today, 60 years later, all animated films are compared to the "Disney standard" of which Snow White is a prime example.

Of course, over time the movie has become a little bit dated. It has that "20's" feel to it (even though it was made in 1937), and while the animation is oh-so-intricate it's also a little bit jittery and the one thing they never got quite right was the lip movement of the human characters. Aside from that, it's easily one of the best animated films ever made - filled with humor, sweetness, and even a little edgy darkness. Plus, the animation is just amazing considering it was all done by hand. Go frame-by-frame with your dvd player and look at the detail. Wow. While the story is just an adaptation of a Brother's Grimm fairy tale, it has some of the most memorable music and dialogue that has become ingrained in American culture. "Heigh-Ho, "Heigh-Ho", "Whistle While You Work", "Mirror Mirror on the Wall" - and many more phrases. Plus, can you name the Seven Dwarfs? No cheating!
This 2-disc set is packed to the max with extras. I think every single storyboard and Snow White related audio and video clip in existence has been included here. There's so much stuff that they include a video guide to the dvd extras hosted by Angela Lansbury just so you can sort it all out! The dvd menu is hosted by Roy Disney (Walt's nephew) with the "Mirror on the Wall" as your menu guide. The only bad thing to be said about this dvd is that there's really nothing there for the film's true audience: kids! The only fun extra is Dopey's Wild Mine Ride where you have to navigate Dopey through a diamond mine by answering trivia questions. However, this is a great dvd for older movie buffs who remember this film fondly and enjoy Disney history. Here we go:

Disk 1:

Guided tours of both disc 1 & 2: Angela Lansbury gives us the lowdown on each dvd extra along with a clip of each. Audio Commentary: Hosted by animation historian John Canemaker and features many old audio clips of Walt Disney.

Still The Fairest of Them All: A 40 minute making-of feature that covers everything about the history, the story, and the merchandising of Snow White. It's peppered with interviews with film historians and old animators as well as showing us many of the conceptual drawings and storyboards for the movie.

Goddess of Spring: One of Disney's "Silly Symphonies" animated shorts that was a prelude to Snow White.

"Heigh-Ho" Sing-Along: Watch the Seven Dwarfs sing their famous song, or sing along with them. This looks like an older "Wonderful World of Disney" production that they added to the dvd - but now you can put it in "karaoke mode" and sing by yourself!

Dopey's Wild Mine Ride: A dvd-based game that is actually fun. There's some great 3-D mine riding and the trivia is challenging.

"Some Day My Prince Will Come": As sung by Barbara Streisand, this song is put to a video consisting of scenes from Snow White.

DVD ROM: Pop this dvd into your computer and get access to the Snow White website, Dopey's Wild Ride, and a Princess Fashion Boutique game (a plug for a Disney software game), plus some dvd exclusive content like screensavers, a chart of the Seven Dwarfs' names in 17 languages, a create-and-print coloring book, and some more behind the scenes interviews.

Disk 2:

Snow White's Wishing Well: Storyboard to film comparisons of 4 key scenes in the movie plus text-based timelines to the Snow White production and Walt Disney's life. Also included is the full Brother's Grimm fairy tale that the movie is based on.

The Queen's Castle: A ton of stuff in this section including clips of all of the actors who voiced the characters, animation tests, excerpts of many of those 50's and 60's Disney specials, and many other tidbits. Many of the drawings and storyboards are shown in an interactive 3-D narrated tour of an art museum.

The Queen's Dungeon: This includes a feature on the restoration of the film with an interview with the dvd producer. Also, three abandoned scenes are show here, including a fantasy rendition of "Someday My Prince Will Come" where Snow White floats among the clouds imagining her prince.

The Dwarfs' Mine: A great "Disney through the Decades" feature takes you through seven decades of Disney history. Each decade is hosted by a different actor, including old Disney actors like Fess Parker (Davy Crocket) and Dean Jones (The Love Bug). Five deleted scenes are shown here too, the highlight being a dinnertime song by the Dwarfs that was left out. You can also watch the old unrestored RKO opening and closing credits to the film here.

The Dwarfs' Cottage: Eight different theatrical trailers for Snow White can be found here. This section also has two features taking you through Disney Studios and showing you how cartoons are made. There are some old radio broadcasts and an unused song from the film. Finally, old archive footage of the movie premiere is shown here, and it's peppered with old stars like Shirley Temple and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.
Snow White is a classic movie, and this dvd covers the film so completely you couldn't ask for anything more.
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