Snow White and the Seven Dwarves

1937 cartoon

Rating: 16/20

Plot: A lunatic flees from another lunatic, breaks into the home of some mentally-challenged little people, throws a party with a bunch of filthy animals, and finally attacks the owners of the home with soap. The other lunatic locates her and tricks her into eating a poisoned apple by cleverly saying, "Here, eat this apple." She dies. [Spoiler Alert!] Luckily, the antidote seems to be the saliva of the notorious philanderer Prince Charming, a cat known for his sloppy smooches and wandering hands.

I don't want to trash a classic, but I really don't like this movie very much at all. When you compare it with other early Disney animated features (Pinocchio, Fantasia, even Dumbo), it just doesn't seem as good. Yeah, I know this was the first, and I know when you compare Snow White to modern cheapo straight-to-video animated crappings, it's way ahead of its time and very impressive for 19-freakin'-37. But with about thirty-five years of Disney animated features under my belt, I think the animation in this is hard to watch. The characters in the foreground (and they're always in the foreground) don't mesh with the backgrounds. The backgrounds look completely flat and lifeless. Snow White has unnatural physical features and almost no chest. I want breasts on my Disney princesses. I do like how the dwarves are animated; they've got character and move in a lively way. The dwarf (Wait a second--do they actually like being called that? Is that as politically incorrect as using the dreaded M-word?) movements combined with their individual personalities are where the Disney creative spirit is most evident. I always like how Disney animates animals, but the good animal stuff in this is merely foreshadowing for better stuff that would come later. I also really don't like some of the voices, especially the titular princess. The witch is fine though. The songs? "Someday My Prince Will Come" is a classic although the randy double entendre is uncalled for. The "Heigh Ho" song (Ho? C'mon, Disney!) has always been one of my favorites. Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, for me at least, will always be one of those classics that is more important than it is fun to watch. In my likely blasphemous opinion, I think the Disney people should animate a remake. Snow White could look almost identical (with boobs), the dwarves and witch(es) could look exactly the same, and modern technology and better voice work could help make the story live up to the classic status.

Another idea--Disney should hire me as a creative consultant. I wouldn't even demand an outrageous salary or anything. Walt's head--if you're reading this, give me a call.


Barry said...

I agree on the voices, the animation and the general look and feel of this one. There are a few scenes, a few moments, of pure magic. I like the way the witch is animated, and there are scenes when Snow White is dancing around where it looks like a real person moving.

I would give this one a 16 or so as well. Its obvious they were still working the bugs out a little on this rather new technique.

cory said...

Also a 16, mainly because of what it represents in film history. I don't know if Walt was bedding the woman who voiced Snow White, but I'm trying to find a logical reason that we are forced to endure one of the most cloying speaking, and grating singing voices in movie history.

In your remake, I hope she dies from eating the apple, since it would serve her right for being so incredibly stupid.

Shane said...

You wouldn't eat an apple offered by a creepy hunchbacked woman wearing all black?

The more I think about her character, the more I think that Snow White might be mentally challenged. She talks to animals, thinks it's perfectly acceptable to break into and clean the homes of people she doesn't even know, and she takes candy from strangers. A 'Snow White 2' ( there one? There's a 'Sleeping Beauty 2,' right?) would most likely be about the prince trying to figure out what to do after realizing he's married somebody with the mental age of four.