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Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (SC)
BLU-RAY disk
03.08.2016 By: Sean Wist
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (SC) order download
Director:
David Hand

Actors:
Adriana Caselotti
Roy Atwell
Stuart Buchanan

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The first animated feature film follows a young princess who escapes the clutches of an evil Queen and finds refuge with seven dwarfs.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
It's HARD to rate a movie like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. On one hand, the cinephile in me really appreciates what a groundbreaking motion picture this is, and what it meant for cinema in the 1930s. I mean, this movie is 79 years old and it still looks gorgeous! On the other hand...it's also not terribly exciting.

Walt Disney had some serious balls to make the first animated motion picture and he decided to keep it simple. We have a hard-working princess, an evil stepmother who wants to be rid of her, and lot of cutesy forest animals. Still, the first act of the film is a marvel in both the animation and sound departments. Things really pick up when the Queen decides to send her Huntsman to take out Snow White. After a thrilling "chase" in the forest, things slow WAY down. Snow White reaches the cottage with the seven dwarfs and this is where the film throttles down as song and dance numbers take over. Things finally pick back up in the third act, when the Queen decides to take action and dwarfs come to Snow White's aid. The finale still remains an emotional one to this day. Granted, the Prince is almost seems like an afterthought here, but I suppose even Snow White deserves a happy ending. So to speak.

After all these years, this film still has a lot of charm...but it drags. While I can appreciate the simplistic story and the work put into it, just because it came first doesn't mean that later films didn't do it better. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, for me, has always been a good movie and not a great one. I don't think there's any shame in that at all.
THE EXTRAS
Given that this is the second time Snow White has been released on Blu-ray, we'll mark the new featurettes on this Signature Collection as such. Not everything from the Diamond Edition has been carried over, so read on to see if this is the version for you!

NEW - In Walt's Words: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (4:22): First up is a really short discussion on the making of Snow White with audio taken from interviews with Walt Disney. You'll find a lot of this information is on the commentary, so there's nothing mind-blowing here.

NEW - Iconography (7:16): This video introduces us to a few artists and how they can incorporate Snow White into what they do, whether it be fashion design, 3D paper art or even LEGO building. This feels like something you would find on Disney XD before they actually air the movie..

NEW - @DisneyAnimation: Designing Disney's First Princess (5:16): Art directors sit around with some of the early Snow White designs and discuss her character, as well as how leading ladies in Disney films have changed over the years. An intriguing idea, but all the interesting bits are glossed over in favor of praise for the film.

NEW - The Fairest Facts of Them All: 7 Things You May Not Know about Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (4:37): Here's a fact: It takes more time to read that title than it does to watch the featurette! 7 random facts about the film were pulled for this, which would take you all of 30 seconds to read if they were on paper. Want that stretched into 5 minutes? This is the extra for you!

NEW - Snow White in Seventy Seconds (1:12): A hip-hop retelling of the Snow White story...because, ya know, youth market and stuff.

NEW - Alternate Sequence: The Prince Meets Snow White (3:39): This is an alternate opening of the film where (you guessed it) the Prince meets Snow White, and it's told in a kind of pseudo-roundtable style, with voice actors portraying Disney and the writers as they discuss the scene. The sequence is not all that different from the film version, except that the Prince actually kisses Snow White at the well, and proudly proclaims his love for her after she leaves. Overall, a pretty neat way to approach telling a scene that was never animated.

NEW(ish) - Disney's First Feature: The Making of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (33:15): For those of you who already own the Diamond Edition, this is basically 'The One That Started It All' feature, extended by 15 minutes. With that said, this is actually a decent look back at the time when Snow White was being made, including some anecdotes from the actual animators about the making of Snow White and its premiere in 1937.

Bringing Snow White to Life (11:35): This video pulls back the curtain on Walt Disneys's "The 9 Old Men" - his heavy hitters of animation. Here we see the characters they were involved with developing, as well as some of the other Disney characters they went on to animate.

Hyperion Studios Tour (30:36): In what's easily my favorite extra on this Blu-ray, the Hyperion Studios Tour takes viewers back to the 1930s of when Snow White was being made. Using a mixture of interviews from the actual people that worked there, as well as photographs and some video, this documentary recreates anecdote after anecdote of what it was like to actually work for Disney. Even the women who worked tirelessly in the painting and inking departments get a chance to shine. It's worth noting that this is a truncated version of the Hyperion Studios extras that were on the Diamond release, but it's still a great extra to have!

Decoding the Exposure Sheet (6:49): For those of you interested in the technical aspects of how animation was filmed, this is a fascinating little piece going over how entire scenes were often assembled using multiple exposures, and one sheet to guide workers through the entire process.

Snow White Returns (8:44): A short look at what would have been a sequel short to Snow White, which used the two scenes taken out of the main feature (and can be found on this disc.

Story Meetings: The Dwarfs (5:51): Some transcripts from the conversations the filmmakers had are re-enacted here to give viewers an idea of what it was like to sit in on a production meeting. This one focuses on the identities of the dwarfs.

Story Meetings: The Huntsman (3:55): This extra is the same as before, except following the scene where the Huntsman attempts to kill Snow White and she flees into the forest.

Deleted Scene: Soup Eating Sequence (4:07): One of two deleted scenes from Snow White. This one features exactly what the title states, with a song taking up the bulk of it. As you can imagine, this already slows down an already slow second act of the film, and it was taken out before fully animated.

Deleted Scene: Bed Building Sequence (6:28): Much like the previous deleted scene, this one doesn't add anything to the story as whole, despite containing some nifty gags on how the dwarfs and the woodland creatures come together to build Snow White a bed.

Animation Voice Talent (6:20): This short featurette gives us a rundown of the people who provided the voices of Snow White's characters. Interesting, but given what's available from the 1930s, not very in-depth, understandably.

Audio Commentary: Film historian John Canemaker sets the scene here, paving the way for interview clips of Walt Disney to be spliced throughout the commentary. With that in mind, it's a fairly interesting track going through the ins and outs of how the film was made and received.

A digital copy of the film is also included.

As you can see, most of the newer extras are fluff material. With that said, there is plenty of interesting stuff to check out in the extras ported over from the Diamond Edition. Even though you're missing a little from that release, this disc is the way to go if you don't already own it. Proud owners of the Diamond Edition are good with what they have, as the video and audio presentation is exactly the same.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
You probably already know how you feel about Snow White as a film. With that said, if you already have the Diamond Edition in your collection, you're set. If you don't own the film (and want to), this is set is for you. The video and audio presentation is fantastic, and as long as you don't mind skipping over the pointless new featurettes, you'll find some really interesting extras to boot.
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