01 June 2007

Disney Animated Feature Films 1937-2007

Disney Animated Feature Films has sung its last saccharine ballad penned by Elton John and gone to join its maker in a cryogenic chamber following the publication of research that the negative portrayal of the elderly in films such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, 101 Dalmatians and The Hunchback of Notre Dame adversely affects children’s image of the older generation – even more so than when the older generation refuse to buy them the repackaged DVD of Lilo and Stitch, available for a limited time only, that they have already seen 237 times.

Disney Animated Feature Films - the child of animator Walt Disney and his beloved pet mouse - burst into the black and white world of the 1930s with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – a brash and colourful brat that leapt into the face of Depression-era America and the smoggy world of staid Britain, injecting a much-needed dose of Technicolor with its innocent story of a sweet young princess who spends her time buffing the tools of seven aged midgets.

The success of Snow White, despite its portrayal of a wicked elderly royal intent on destroying a beautiful young princess (a portrayal understood - according to the representatives of Mr Mohamed Al Fayed - to have been based on Prince Philip), encouraged Disney to return to the drawing board for its next feature, Pinocchio – the heart-warming and innocent tale of an elderly carpenter who, to banish his loneliness, whittles away at his wood for hours on end until a magic fairy grants him a young boy all his own.

Despite the box-office failure of Fantasia (attributed by critics to the two-dimensional performance of Mr Disney's beloved protegé, one M Mouse) Disney Animated Feature Films continued to prosper during the war years with Dumbo, a young elephant who discovers an ability to fly following an alcoholic binge and a couple of sniffs of a magic feather, and Bambi, a young deer traumatised by the tragic death of his mother at the hands of a wicked hunter (again, we are advised by the representatives of Mr Al Fayed this part was based on The Duke of Edinburgh).

In the post-war years The Films continued to increase their hold on children’s imagination and their parents wallets with a string of all-singing, all-dancing anthropomorphic adventures including The Lady and the Tramp, The Jungle Book and The Anthropomorphist’s All-Singing All-Dancing Adventure.

By the 60s, however, the Films' grip on the public imagination began to loosen, thanks in part to lower budgets and production values but mainly to the fact the public's imagination was dancing naked round a maypole while whacked out on a mix of acid, peyote, hash and those groovy looking pink 'n' purple pills. Things worsened in the 1970s and 80s, with the films coming under attack from such attractions as Luke Skywalker's struggles against the wicked Darth Vader, a creature more machine than man (a character we are again advised was in fact based on Queen Elizabeth's husband).

Advancing years began to take their toll on the Films, with features such as Aladdin and Mulan relying more and more on a clinical formula of over-the-top performances from US stand-ups and soundtracks composed by cutting edge musicians such as Celine Dion. Ever more competition from digital animators, changing demographics and a disastrous decision to ask Slipknot to provide the love songs for the proposed, 101 Dead Dalmatians, bleached the colour from Disney’s upbeat vision of the world and slowly The Films became less animated.

The final blow was struck by researchers at the Brigham Young University in Utah who, after 70 years of smarting at Snow White’s satirical take-on Mormon polygamy, published a scathing attack on stereotypical images of the elderly in Disney Animated Feature Films – complaining that toothless and hunched characters were demeaning to senior citizens and severely cramped Peter Stringfellow’s style. The writing may not have been on the wall but the drawings were most certainly in the bin.

Disney Animated Feature Films will be buried next to Bambi’s mother. The service will be available for a limited time only on DVD and the congregation will sing from the Book of Phil Collins and Elton John. They are survived by the Duke of Edinburgh.


Al Grow said...

Was the source that gave the tip off about Phil the Greek being Dark Vader the same as the one who put the finger on the others?

The As A Dodo Team said...

All we can say is that the information was handed to us in a gold and green bag at the Paris Ritz Hotel.

Al Grow said...

Thanks for the info. I did suspect the Aussies all along

james higham said...

Boys ... don't forget to get those nominations in for the Blogpower Awards - vote early and vote often!

Sueblimely said...

How sad to see those masterpieces disappear. Why hide the views of generations past. Will Shrek suffer the same fate in the future when it is seen as politically incorrect to show discrimination against ugly fat green monsters? Sorry I used the word fat - that should perhaps have been 'width challenged'.

In any case such stories as Snow White where not written in the Disney era. Grimm wrote this in the early 19th century.