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|Kevin Krock, editor|
Theatrically released decades after the original Winnie the Pooh shorts and features, The Tigger Movie brings back Pooh, Eeyore, Owl, Piglet, and the rest of the Hundred Acre Wood gang in a new adventure starring Tigger, of course.
While everyone is getting ready for winter, Tigger wants to bounce and have fun, but nobody has the time to go bouncing with him except little Roo. When Rabbit tells Tigger to leave him alone and go find some other Tiggers to bounce with, Tigger decides to begin a search for his Tigger family.
Tigger writes a letter to his family and patiently waits as the days pass without a reply. As he becomes increasingly depressed about the lack of a response from his family, Roo suggests to the others that they should help Tigger feel better by writing a reply as Tigger’s family. Upon receiving the letter, Tigger’s mania about his family’s existence only increases. The others soon realize that they must continue the charade, thus making the situation worse. Tigger ultimately realizes that he really is the only Tigger, and even though they do not look like he does, his family is actually Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, and the others.
I was a bit surprised at how this movie exceeded my (admittedly low) expectations. The story is simple and transparent in parts, but overall it is fairly engaging for everyone in the family. The animation is nicely executed by Disney’s Japanese television animation studio, maintaining a nice balance between classic and modern Disney animation styles. The music by the famous Sherman Brothers is upbeat, and strikes a pleasing balance between the old Sherman hit- making formula and more contemporary music. It all combines to provide a film that the whole family can enjoy.
There is not a lot of bonus material on this disc, and what exists is almost exclusively for children. In addition to a theatrical trailer and a matching game, you find Disney’s standard trivia game and storybook, which are all mildly entertaining for children. The disc also has a sing- along song for one of the most humorously animated scenes in the movie. The family tree demo is not terribly impressive, but does a pretty good job of introducing the concept of family trees to children. Finally, there is a Kenny Loggins music video on the disc, which is one of those items that you might watch once.
The Video, Audio and Interface
The video transfer is quite nice. The movie is presented in anamorphic widescreen enhanced for widescreen TVs, and it looks flawless. The colors and detail are wonderful throughout the movie, helping to emphasize the wonderful illustration- style backgrounds. Simply put, this disc will look good on any video system.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 surround soundtrack is pretty good, but it is almost mono- like in its tendency to be focused in the center channel. Fortunately, the music and an occasional surround effect help to provide a bit of audio diversity.
The interface is an unfortunate victim of being a 2000 Disney DVD. All menu screens are devoid of either audio or animation, and are just plain boring compared to current standard Disney DVD releases. Had this been released today, I am sure the situation would be much improved.
The Final Evaluation
I am pretty sure that fans of Pooh will love the movie, if they do not already. It has a fairly decent plot with all the familiar characters, pleasing animation, and music by the legendary Sherman Brothers. The DVD does a nice job of presenting it on home video systems. The major shortcomings are the sleep- inducing menus and the bonus materials, which will disappoint adult fans.
If you have never seen this movie and are looking for a good flick for a family movie night, it is worth a rental spin. On the other hand, ardent Pooh (or Tigger) fans will probably want to put this on their wish list, if they have not picked it up already.
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