Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Fantasia (1940)

My rating: 70%

I will be very honest. I was very reluctant even after getting this film from the library to watch this film. Because when it came to watching it as a kid, I didn't think even Sorcerer's Apprentice was enough to bear watching the whole thing. not. at. all.

Plot: This is basically a film where various stories are told with only animation and music tell the story.


Toccata and Fugue in D minor: The orchestra plays this as this starts off with live-action shots of them with lights in the background but then it changes to animation where they basically lay out what images you may think of when hearing the particular music with shadows and lines and shapes.

Nutcracker Suite: This is where it gets to actual animation with characters. Basically, they makes some animated events that have to do with fairies, mushrooms, fish, flowers and so on with parts of the Nutcracker Suite such as "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy", "Chinese Dance", "Dance of the Flutes", "Arabian Dance", "Russian Dance" and "Waltz of the Flowers".

The Sorcerer's Apprentice: Mickey Mouse who is an apprentice to the Sorcerer, Yen Sid tried to do a little magic of his own despite not yet learning how to control it.

The Rite of Spring: from each section of this piece, this part in the film goes through Earth's earliest times from the earth's formation, to the earliest creatures, to the reign and extinction of the dinosaurs.

Meet the Soundtrack: and animation of the "soundtrack" which is a straight line that makes sorts of pictures from various musical instruments.

The Pastoral Symphony: This tells a story of Greek mythology with centaurs, fauns, cupids, Pegasus and his family and other mythological creatures celebrating with the god of wine, Bacchus until they are interrupted by Zeus who causes a storm and starts throwing lighting bolts at them.

Dance of the Hours: a ballet that has to do with morning, afternoon, evening and night with ostriches, hippos, elephants and alligators.

Night on Bald Mountain and Ave Maria: It starts with Chernabog summoning restless souls and evil spirits and they do some dance or something that's totally evil until they are driven back by the sound of a bell were from there, the story is set on a line of monks who wall through a forest to the ruins of a cathedral with torches singing Ave Maria.

Now like I said, I hated this film as a kid because the only thing that was close to enjoyable was Sorcerer's Apprentice just because of Mickey. I mean i'm sure if younger me could see me now, he'd think I'm being too kind or being just a moron for giving this film anywhere close to as high of a rating as I have given it. And to be completely honest, while I do not totally like this movie to the point where I admit I did get a little bored, I did enjoy it a little better because of the music and with some of the ideas they had for it. I mean the images they give you in Toccata and Fugue in D minor make a lot of sense. although I thought the intro to that one as unexpected as far as the particular instruments they played when you think of that song. The Rite of Spring and Nutcracker Suite I respected a little more after becoming familiar with that one from a Music Appreciation class. Nutcracker Suite, The Pastoral Symphony and Dance of the Horns was nice to watch considering knowing what was the big deal with the fairies, mushrooms, greek mythological characters, and especially the deal with the alligator and hippo. The Sorcerer's Apprentice was just as I remembers it. As for Night on Bald Mountain and Ave Maria, I enjoyed it...but what they did as far as setting their characters did not make a lot of sense. The main villain was pretty much being Satan and yet he officially is Chernabog...what the heck? how are we suppose to know that without them telling us? I mean the Narrator doesn't say Charnabog when he was introducing us to the piece, he said SATAN!!!! Plus pretty much everything they did had to do with hell and Satan and all the other biblical stuff spiritually. I mean on Charnabog's mountain, you have all these souls dancing and worshiping him, he's having a big evil smile every time, and you have nothing going right for the worshipers with stuff like beauty turning into greed and Charnabog throwing some of them into the fire. plus it ends with him being driven by by a church bell with the rest of the piece having to do with those monks going to the ruin of that cathedral as a way of showing that the Lord's light conquers all evil. How does that make sense? plus what's also a messed up thing is that you actually see nipples. I'm not kidding. good see for yourself or take a look at the Nostalgia Critic's list of top 11 disney villains (where Charnabog is in the top) and he'll point to you that some of the evil spirits were these naked women with wings that have huge breasts with their nipple showing. that's just messed up.

And that is my review for Fantasia. it's not really my mind of film Disney or otherwise, but at least I have come to appreciate it more now that I've grown up since the last time I saw it.

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