Sneaky Peeky Full movie review Disney’s Rapunzel (2010)
We’re essentially in an age where the quality, content and appeal of Animation movies are improving like never before. It has ceased to be a medium catering to the Sunday evening needs of toddlers hanging out with their hapless parents. If the slapstick humor of ‘Jolly Disney’ (Remember the 10-minute Mickey, Donald shorts?) has been replaced by a wittier kind as exemplified by movies such as ‘Hoodwinked!’, it is perhaps a cocktail of the two which really ends up ‘working’ on-screen, proven last year by the inimitable ‘Kung Fu Panda’ (“Well, they are trying to imitate it with a sequel…” I guess my co-watcher’s right!)
Also in recent times, we have seen ‘Japanese anime’ secure a proud place in the ‘Animation world’. Even though its success has mostly been limited to a host of TV series like Dragon Ball and Naruto, the occasional movies have been successful in capturing the attention of the worldwide audience (“It’s not audience, write viewers”, my co-watcher interjects, “Audience means those who listen!”), notably Hayao Miyazaki’s Oscar-winning ‘Spirited Away’ (Incidentally, the first anime movie to win an Oscar), ‘Howl’s Moving Castle’ and more recently, ‘Ponyo on the Cliff’.
In 2008, somebody decided: If anime can do it, so can We! And there came a movie from the Disney-Pixar camp called ‘Wall-E’, a movie about a lone robot in a post-evacuated world where he is still doing his daily shifts as the ‘Garbage collector’. The movie touched the ‘viewers’ (“Happy?” I ask), not only with its ‘sugarcoated, and yet lovable’ portrayal of love, but also with its underlying message regarding the state of the earth! This year, we saw a movie… simply titled ‘Up’, and critics far and wide have hailed it as ‘perhaps’ the best Animated movie of all time.
Now, don’t get me wrong- it’s all very good. But on a very personal level, the first animated ‘feature’ I saw was Disney’s ‘The Lion King’. And needless to say, I loved it (“My first one was Aladdin, I guess… I loved the songs in that film” my co-watcher adds) However, as the collaborations with ‘Pixar’ started, the feel-good animated movies of the past era was slowly and steadily replaced by the 3-D(ish) pseudo-realistic mode of animation first seen in MY all-time favourite animation flick ‘Toy Story’.
It’s not like Disney stopped producing classic 2-D films after that, but they were essentially made with generally weak storylines and failed to attract major mature audiences. Finally, it seems, Disney is returning to its ‘feel-good, song-ridden classics’ in a big way, although bringing with it the woes “and” pleasures of 3-D animation.
Rapunzel, to be released in late-2010, has the look and feel of a Disney Classic like ‘Sleeping Beauty’ or a ‘Pocahontos’. The stills released promises somewhat of a ‘restoration’ but seemingly with an improvement over its predecessors. Will it have those songs that we miss so much in modern Animated flicks? Will it be at par with the great films being churned out every year post-2D era? Can Disney finally complete the ‘Merger of the Eras’? Well, we have to wait till December 2010 to find out!
[About Rapunzel: It is a classic Grimm’s not-so-grim tale about a mysterious girl with long, beautiful tresses held captive by an evil witch, in an unscalable tower. Rapunzel would be voiced by Mandy Moore (“That just proves that the movie’s bound to have songs…” my co-watcher insists) The other voice talents include David Schwimmer and Zachary Levi. The film will be co-directed by erstwhile story-editor Nathan Greno and Byron Howard, director of ‘Bolt’.]