Bambi II

Your mother can’t be with you anymore,” Bambi’s dad intoned in the 1942 original, traumatizing millions of tots. Bambi II takes off from that moment, with Star Trek‘s Patrick Stewart now getting the line as he assumes the role of the forest’s Mr. Mom. Speaking of things that can’t be with us anymore, this is one of the last hand-drawn pics from the recently shuttered Disney ‘toons sequel division, since 2-D isn’t considered viable now even for direct-to-DVD releases. Animation buffs have been dreading the marring of a classic, but Uncle Walt may not be spinning too rapidly in that cryonic chamber: Visually, it’s surprisingly faithful — easily Disney’s most beautiful made-for-video successor ever. Too bad there’s far less grace in the script, which seems to have about 500 times as much dialogue as the largely wordless original, with predictable excesses of slapstick and action to boot. EXTRAS An orientation toward very young viewers is reflected in bonuses like the ”Thumper’s Hurry & Scurry” game and, accompanying the feature, Pop-Up Video-style explanations of nature trivia and symbolism (”The rain here signifies that spring is coming…. Or it could just mean it’s raining”).

Bambi II
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