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How do people react to Scar's advances? 
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Post Re:
Fantine wrote:
It is a question never answered. There are two male lions in the pride: Scar and Mufasa.

So our little Nala has a little problem.

Who conceived her?

A lion that wasn't part of the pride?

In nature, I believe that only the leading male lion is allowed to mate with the lionesses from his pride.

I guess Disney just leaves much left to answer.


There were only two male lions in the whole pride?????

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Wed Apr 06, 2011 4:07 pm
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Post Re: Re:
Miss Adelaide wrote:
Fantine wrote:
It is a question never answered. There are two male lions in the pride: Scar and Mufasa.

So our little Nala has a little problem.

Who conceived her?

A lion that wasn't part of the pride?

In nature, I believe that only the leading male lion is allowed to mate with the lionesses from his pride.

I guess Disney just leaves much left to answer.

There were only two male lions in the whole pride?????

Although coalitions of male lions up to about four can occur, there are typically no more than two and there is no indication in The Lion King of any other males in the pride aside from Scar and Mufasa. As such, unless Nala's father was a passing rogue lion, her father would logically have to be one of those two.

*Insert joke about Simba being betrothed to his possible first cousin or half-sister as appropriate* :P

Of course, that sort of thing would be in keeping with several real world royal families throughout history... >.<

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Sat Apr 09, 2011 10:04 am
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Post Re: How do people react to Scar's advances?
I'd like to add my two cents to the "is Disney really all cute and cuddly" debate.

Disney does have this rep for being sweet and harmless. (Hence the verb, "Disneyfication.") But let's have a good, hard look at some of Disney's canon, both animated and live-action, shall we?

A vain queen, insane with jealousy, tells her huntsman to kill her innocent stepdaughter and bring back her heart in a box. Said box has a dagger-pierced heart for a clasp.

A live puppet is menaced, at various times, by a couple of con-men, a puppeteer who plans to keep him as a slave and slaughter him for firewood when he can no longer work, and a devilish coachman who leads wayward boys astray. Said boys turn into donkeys and are sold as beasts of burden, where they will probably be worked to death. We see the horrifying transformation of one of these boys, whose last words as a human being are, "MAMA! MAMA!!!" And here's the kicker...every last one of the villains gets off scot-free, while the boys, who were never guilty of anything more than foolishness, will live short, miserable lives and die of exhaustion.

A young fawn is jolted out of an innocent childhood when his mother is shot. Later, he deals with the pangs of love (and fighting a rival) and sees other animals slaughtered by hunters (including a panicking pheasant in a harrowing scene) and his forest home menaced by a dangerous fire. (That wasn't even the worst of it...at one point, they were planning on killing off Thumper, and actually storyboarded a scene which showed a hunter's corpse. And somehow, THIS is the movie that people usually cite when they talk about Disney's cuteness!)

In the primeval earth, dinosaurs go about their natural lives, which naturally includes them getting caught and killed by predators. A vicious, brutal fight ensues between a stegosaurus and a T-rex, which ends with the stegosaurus getting its neck broken and painfully gasping out its last breaths as the T-rex settles in for its meal. Then the Earth's climate changes and the dinosaurs, in agony from hunger and thirst, stagger across the desert in search of relief, more and more of them dying off slowly and painfully...until the mighty lizards are no more. (All this to the music of a ballet that was controversial enough in its original form!)

Later in this same movie, Chernabog, the Russian form of the Devil, summons up the spirits of the restless dead (one of which is a hanged criminal) and presides over their vicious, unholy revels (during which we see brief flashes of bare-breasted witches). Only the rising dawn and the ringing of church bells banish Chernabog.

A baby elephant is mistreated by adult elephants who should know better, and forcibly separated from his mother who was only trying to protect him. When he visits her in her cage, she can only use her trunk to caress her beloved baby.

A pirate cheerfully murders and instigates a mutiny, and indicates he'd have no trouble killing the ten-year-old boy who was his friend (although he later says he had no intention of harming the boy). He double- and triple-crosses, is utterly amoral...and somehow, we end up liking him. He, too, ends up getting off scot-free. (May I also add that this same movie shows said ten-year-old shooting a pirate dead!)

A mad genius builds the world's first submarine and discovers atomic power. On one hand, he is charming and fiercely loyal to those who are loyal to him...on the other hand, he is a terrorist who sinks warships and kills their blameless crew. But once again, we harbor some admiration and pity for him (because of the painful past that drove him to this) and wish it could be some other way for him. (I've always wished that the movie version had kept the book's open ending instead of killing Captain Nemo off.)

A dog is taken to a dog pound where it's made pretty clear what happens to unwanted animals. Although our heroine is claimed because she has a license, we actually see a dog being led off "through the one-way door." (Fridge Horror: we're glad to see Lady and Tramp together in the end...but what happened to all those dogs in the pound that she left behind? I guess we could believe that the one dog's escape tunnel worked...)

A boy is forced to shoot the dog he loves to save his family from being exposed to rabies. Although his mother offers to do it if he can't bring himself, he knows it is his duty as the man of the house with his father away. In doing so, he faces responsibility and makes his first steps toward manhood.

A lovable animal (well, insect) sidekick is killed off, for the first time in any Disney movie. Not seemingly-dead-and-brought-back-to-life...FINITO. Although it's tempered by the fact that he becomes a star in the sky next to his beloved evening star, but still...

And, in the very movie that this musical is based on...a lion king is murdered by his own brother and the young prince is made to believe he's responsible. All this after we've had a lengthy scene focusing on the father's corpse and the cub trying to wake his father. (You ask me, the most horrifying part of that scene was the look in Mufasa's eyes as he realized what was about to happen to him...at the claws of his own brother.)

So my question is...Disney got its cute-and-fluffy reputation WHERE? Seems to me that Disney is cute and harmless the same way Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote substance-free fluff!

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Fri May 06, 2011 10:29 am
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Post The Reputation of the Disney Studios
EricMontreal22 wrote:
The Great Five Disney pre-war films (Snow White, Pinocchio, Fantasia, Bambi and Dumbo) stand up, in terms of characterization, camera angles, direction, to any films of the era (yes including Citizen Kane) and actually feel MORE modern than them.The early prewar Disney films... hold up as great works of CINEMA next to anything of their time.... The use of stylization is particularly amazing in a modern context - something I wish Disney had pursued more.

Absolutely. It's a pity that the creative engine of the studio was disrupted by the war. Each one of those early films pushed the boundaries of what animation could be on film and indeed of film in general. When you watch those early films, moments that are echoed in later films (both live action and animated) spring out and you realise what the potential of the Disney studios was at the time. It compounds the disappointment one feels watching the compilation features that followed, even though those films had their highlights.

EricMontreal22 wrote:
Back then particularly (though I think this has - more or less - always been true) Disney wasn't creating films to sell merchandise or get kids interested - he wanted to make exciting, interesting MOVIES, and they were, and are vital in that regard.

I think there are times when it is definitely less true, which is where Disney has lost its voice as an animation studio, for me. The reliance on formula, the DTV sequels that have thankfully ceased production, the Tinkerbell franchise and films like Tangled are signs of a company trying to make things that sell first and things that are exciting, interesting and vital MOVIES second - at least from my perspective.

EricMontreal22 wrote:
Pinocchio is a HUGE improvement on its fragmented, moralistic source material, which I would even go as far as saying wouldn't be in print anymore without the Disney film.

I agree that the film adaptation of Pinocchio manages to come out as a less fragmented, but it still reflects the episodic nature of its source material to a large extent. (Not that there's anything wrong with that; I'm just saying.) I love the film, but I loved reading adaptations of the original story when I was a kid too. I was well aware of things like the cricket being killed and the bit where Pinocchio gets hanged and so on. And I found the whole thing intriguing and mysterious. Besides the obvious "don't tell a lie" moral, nothing else that was explicitly moralistic was clear to me. I was sucked into the adventures experienced by Pinocchio, rather than what the adventures taught. Of course, the adaptations I read were probably simplified and adaptations in their own right, but I enjoyed the general thrust of what was going on. Perhaps I should add the The Adventures of Pinocchio to my ever growing reading list and have a look at the material through an adult's eyes.

EricMontreal22 wrote:
As for the belief that Disney whitewashed fairy tales - look at Snow White. It's darker than any of the live action adaptations... of the time, or even of recent times. With the fairy tales especially, these are stories that have always been retold for their audience.

Yeah, as a traditional adaptation of the tale, I would agree that it is dark enough compared to the original tale and darker than most other adaptations of Snow White that don't explicitly make it a part of their mission to bring out the darker elements of the tale - like that awful Snow White: A Tale of Terror film or the even more miserable Snow White: The Fairest of Them All . I think this is because many newer adaptations for children, especially low budget ones, start with the Disney film as a reference point and then whitewash that.

EricMontreal22 wrote:
As much as I largely (with some huge "WTF moments") love films like The Hunchback of Notre Dame, I do get the criticism that Disney took a piece of art and simplified it (though they didn't any more than Universal did in the 30s), and I do think the "formula" that was haphazardly created by these early movies (comic sidekicks, etc) has become stale.

Yes, it is formula that does in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, as well some of the technology that was being developed in animation at the time, which looked cutting edge back then, but does come off a little jarring now. There are also some bits where I find the traditional animation a bit... "sticky"... for want of a better description, moments where things start to look a bit rotoscopy. I find the film so frustrating to watch because of the gargoyles and, while I'm not averse to the idea of the ending being changed in theory, the way it's done here is just so sickly sweet and treacly. (Isn't there a ballet that also gives the story a more upbeat ending?) That said, there are some glorious things in The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

EricMontreal22 wrote:
Then again Rodgers and Hammerstein could be more than accused of doing the same of their best work (Oklahoma! compared to Green Grow the Lilacs? Carousel next to the darkness of Liliom? South Pacific compared to the novellas?).

I don't think I've ever heard anyone complaining about Oklahoma! being a whitewashed Green Grow the Lilacs. If anything, I find Oklahoma! more psychologically complex thanks to the music and the ballet and the time given in both the book and the score to develop Jud as a character. It's been a decade or more since I read Green Grow the Lilacs, but I don't remember being quite as disturbed by Jeeter as I am by Jud. Certainly the ending of Carousel departs drastically from the tone of Liliom, but there are elements of Carousel that are perhaps too light for their own good - the comic Jigger and the sinister Jigger don't quite come together as one and I think that's thanks to the use of what is basically a throwaway chorus number, "Blow High, Blow Low", as the only means used to characterise him in the score. South Pacific is another case entirely, being adapted from only a few of the short stories in Tales of the South Pacific, which I'd say are probably not much darker than the musical, although they are more realistic in some of the descriptive detail.

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Sat Nov 05, 2011 9:28 pm
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