Sunday, December 25, 2016

Most Underrated Disney Films

            I have not been posting nearly enough this year and I want to steer back from that.  To that end I have found a 30-day blog challenge and fluffed it out to 31 entries (since December has 31 days).  I have done a 30-day challenge before for movies, though that one was poorly executed (I started it in the middle of a month, at one point I posted 2 entries on one day, it is a mess).  I did another one just this year in August on Video Games, that one was better, go read it after this one, all of it.  Or don’t, no pressure.

            Today is day 25 and the topic is “Most Underrated Movie”.
You know, I give so little thought to Christmas.  I could have reordered my blogs this month to talk about "Nightmare Before Christmas" on Christmas (or Christmas Eve) but I didn't think to.  That was a bit of an oversight.

            I am however willing to point to two movies that I feel are underrated, the first of which came out relatively recently and the other is a forgotten about gem of a film that came out when I was itty bitty.

            First up is “Brave”, the story of a teenage girl who has the gall to not want to get married, flying in the face of pretty much all previous princess characters in the Disney lineup.  She is an able bodied and headstrong fighter with the most awesome hair I have ever seen in an animated character—and I say that as someone who is familiar with and a fan of “Tangled”.

I can't remember the context of this image.
That face could say a lot of different things.
The plot is one of reconciliation with a parent with whom very different life goals and personal priorities have caused a split good bones on which to lay the stories flesh.  And there are monstrous bears.  Bears are serious business.
            It is not perfect.  While I like the setting, characters, premise, and overall plot, some things were not really my cup of tea.  The final confrontation is weak, a character only alluded to earlier in the film shows up as a final boss but has no presence and is not a threat for the rest of the movie.  I feel like there could have been some other monster or supernatural threat in the movie that could have hovered over it all and been there at the end for a boss battle.

I like standing stones and fog choked moors as a visual motif.
The green says, "Alive", the fog says, "Mysterious", and the stones say, "Ancient" and "Unnatural".
The setting as indicated by the presence of the wisps had the potential to be spookier rather than adventurous, I might have liked the movie more if it had gone that way.  But those complaints are kind of thin and amount to asking for more of what was already in “Brave”.  And that is the type of complaint that doesn’t really ring true with me anymore.

The second movie and one that I feel should not be as forgotten as it is, “Duck Tales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp”.  This film is a damn near perfect adventure film, fits right in with the tone of the “DuckTales” series and is both hilarious and fun.

Should have named the genie Bob Cratchit.
The plot is a typical adventure set up.  Scrooge and his family go looking for a lost treasure and find a genie’s lamp.  They are hunted by a sorcerer who has an amulet that would allow him to have endless wishes.  It is actually structured kind of similar to “Aladdin” or “The Mummy” and I wonder if that contributed to it being left behind when the nostalgia train picked up steam, that it is merely a fantastic entry in a much longer series while others were stand alone and released in a bigger push.
I don’t have any complaints about this movie aside from it being hard to get a good copy of it.  It is 26+ years old, they are actually rebooting the “DuckTales” brand with a whole new cast (a cast that I think looks amazing).  So, “Duck Tales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp” and the rest of the 80’s series is soon to be recalled only in the context of a precursor.  Much like the classic Disney cartoons of old.  An artifact with value, but not something that gets looked at too often.
The new one's animation looks much better too.
            Share your own thoughts on this in the comments.  I know I am not the only person out there who is nostalgic for Disney products, and I am sure many people disagree with my selection for today’s entry. 
I picked Disney stuff just because I knew there was so much of it to talk about and it lends itself to discussion in the comments.  So please, tell me how my opinion about cartoon movies is biased and how your opinion on cartoon movies is objectively right.


If you like or hate this please take the time to comment, +1, share on Twitter, Tumblr, or Facebook, and otherwise distribute my opinion to the world.  I would appreciate it.

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