The happiest blog on Earth
While putting together the first post for the Resources page of this blog (which should be pretty self-explanatory), I was looking through every Disney movie that has ever been made, and realized that old Disney animation studio really enjoyed taking the popular music of the time and creating animations to go along with it.
We see this partly in the original Fantasia (I say partly because that music wasn't the music of the times), and wholly in movies like Make Mine Music or Melody Time.
I think that these movies were a great way for Disney to practice its animation and learn how to improve. They are also treasure chests for music lovers who can watch the movies to learn about the contemporary music of the time.
This is the first in a series I will be doing, as I watch Disney movies (some for the first time, some for the fiftieth) and write a review at the end.
The movie starts and I am immediately smiling because the Walt Disney Animation Studios logo is in 64-bit.
Disney starts as usual by explaining the main character, Ralph, who is the bad guy in the old arcade game "Fix-It Felix Jr." Apparently this game likes hyphens. Ralph, voiced perfectly by John C. Reilly, explains in melancholy that he is never appreciated for his work. From there he goes on to try to achieve more than a "villain" has ever achieved, and meets new friends and new foes along the way.
My favourite part of this movie not relating to the plot is the arcade. The whole place, including many familiar characters, is shown, an each character is animated as if its a video game from the time period it came out. It is revealed that characters can leave their game by travelling through electric wires, and the main "game central station" is a power strip. That is brilliant.
My favorite part of the movie pertaining to the animation is how each video game character moves. The animators had to abandon all of their previous lessons to make the characters move so they looked like they were from video games from certain time periods. For example, each of the characters in Fix-It Felix, Jr. movies only on a square grid. I love to look at tidbits like this.
The plot is completely fantastic and heartwarming as always. The part that resonates the most with me is when Ralph goes to Bad-Anon. Those scenes make me laugh every time; I like seeing all of the familiar villains there and thinking about how we immediately assume they are bad people. Disney often does a great job of challenging how we think about ordinary things.
Overall, Wreck-It Ralph is one of the movie I am able to watch over and over again. It's funny, nostalgic, and charming, and teaches wonderful lessons about identity, fighting for what you want, and the importance of friends and family.
#5: Shere Khan (The Jungle Book)
One of the number one qualities of a fantastic Disney villain is a great voice actor, and George Sanders was a perfect choice. Shere Khan is a ruthless yet sophisticated villain who's almost like a less-"Claudius" version of Scar from The Lion King.
#4: Maleficent (Sleeping Beauty)
Not only was she a fantastic villain in the original, but the recent live-action adaptation was AWESOME. Ugh, Angelina Jolie is the queen. She was have been strangely creative and overly dramatic with her curse, yes, but who doesn't want to be able to deliver lines like her.
#3: Yzma (The Emperor's New Groove)
Yzma makes the top list because we need some comic relief. This movie is so funny and her lines ("Not that leverrrrr!") are a staple in my house.
#2: Claude Frollo (The Hunchback of Notre Dame)
I adore Claude Frollo because he's one of the realest villains. This man, for most of the movie, thinks that he's doing right. He feels like he is fighting for a noble cause, fighting for the cause of God, but then he starts to fall in love (or really lust) with the one thing he knows is against his religion. In the original book, the stark contrast is even greater because Frollo is not evil in the beginning. Disney did a fantastic job on adapting this classic novel and the man who faces questions that we all do at some point of our lives: How can we choose what is right and what is wrong, and do we listen to our brains or to our hearts?
#1: Hades (Hercules)
Where do I even begin with Hades? Funny, cunning, manipulative, the list goes on and on. All he wanted originally was to be included, but they banished him to the underworld. From there, he takes his evil plans to world domination to spite his brother, and poor Hades doesn't deserve the end he got. Even with the end, he still manages to deliver what is arguably one of the best puns in the movie (which, I admit, only makes sense in context): "Oh, I don't feel so good! I feel a little flushed!"
On August 11th at around noon, beloved actor Robin Williams was found dead in Tiburon, California. It was later revealed to be suicide, and all of America is mourning his loss.
One of Williams' most famous roles is that of the Genie in Aladdin, and everyone at Disney has been touched by the news. On Tuesday, August 12th, Disney's Eric Goldberg, the supervising animator of the Genie, sent out this heartwarming tribute:
It was captioned with a statement from the CEO of Walt Disney, Robert Igor: "We're deeply saddened by the loss of Robin Williams, a wonderfully gifted man who touched our hearts and never failed to make us laugh. An incredible actor and a comedic genius, Robin will always be remembered for bringing some of the world's favorite characters to life, from his zany alien on ABC's Mork & Mindy to the irascible genie in Disney's Aladdin. He was a true Disney Legend, a beloved member of our family, and he will be sorely missed. We join Robin's friends and fans everywhere in mourning, and offer our thoughts and condolences to his family during this difficult time."
Robin Williams will always be on our minds, and the impact he has made on every Disney fan is something that will be everlasting.
Kat Shambaugh: photographer, graphic designer, wannabe Disney princess. Computational Media major at the Georgia Institute of Technology.