Saturday, February 19, 2011

#313: Dumbo

1940, TSPDT Rank #448

Of the early, classic era Disney films, Dumbo seems to be possibly the most forgotten. It's definitely the shortest, strangest, and most surreal. But I think its filled with a unique sort of Disney magic, and it packs quite an emotional punch. It has so many classic and vivid elements: the stork opening, the capture of the mother, the friendship with Timothy Mouse, the clown show, Pink Elephants on Parade, etc. Not to mention the 'Jim Crows', gloriously un-PC black caricatures in the form of crows that will make you seriously wonder why Song of the South is banned and this isn't (I know I do!). There's also this question: Why a film about a flying elephant? Well, why not?! Dumbo's discovery of flight gives him the sense of pride and self-worth that he deserves, and seems to solve all of the horrible problems the poor little elephant has had dropped on his young shoulders. Dumbo is an emotional, wondrous flight of fancy of a film that deserves to be seen and appreciated more. Plus, I'm with Timothy, those ears are beautiful!

(Rating: 9/10)

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