October 14, 2009

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs movie image slice (1).jpg

The fairytale of a princess with a wicked stepmother jealous of her beauty, Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs was Walt Disney’s first full-length feature and the world’s first animated feature-length film. Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs hasn’t been available since 2001 and this version won’t last long before it goes back into the Disney Vault. My full review is after the jump.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Blu-ray.jpg“The one… That started it all… More beautiful… More enchanting… More entertaining.. Now for the first time ever… in high definition… The fairest one of all!”

Though some have never seen the movie, almost everyone knows the story. Raised by a wicked and vain Queen, beautiful Snow White is taken into the forest to be murdered by the Huntsman. However, his conscious gets the better of him and he can’t come to commit the horrible deed. He sends her off and so she flees and finds refuge in the home of seven diamond-mine workers, known as dwarfs: Doc, Happy, Bashful, Sneezy, Sleepy, Grumpy and Dopey. When the Queen discovers that Snow White is still alive, she transforms herself into an old hag and brings a poisonous apple to send the young girl into an eternal slumber. It’s then that all is lost, but when Prince Charming comes, a love’s kiss may just be the charm.

Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs was nominated for a single Oscar, one for Best Musical Score for Some Day My Prince Will Come. It won an honorary Academy Award for Walt Disney as a significant screen innovation. At the Oscars, 10-year-old Shirley Temple presented Walt Disney with one full-size Oscar statuette and seven miniature ones. The film had charmed audiences around the world and pioneered a new genre. Years before, it had been a risk, bloating in budget and eventually surpassing the $1.5 million mark. But upon release, it was the fairest of them all. It reached audiences around the globe and even touched the world’s most prestigious filmmakers, and for good reason.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs movie image (1).jpgThis isn’t just any other one of the animated movies that are released every year, this is a classic. It’s not a great cartoon, it’s a great movie. All ages will love it and be amazed by what was accomplished decades ago only to still live on with relevancy today. You won’t be ashamed to love this because it’s difficult to outgrow. I’m sure if you dig along with the dwarfs you’ll find some flaws with the movie but it’s like ruining a magic trick by finding out how it’s achieved. Sometimes you just don’t want to. If I had to pick a flaw with this movie, I’d only say the length because I wish it was longer, but at less than 90 minutes, it’s not far behind some more-recent animations. The story is simple and not developed to any huge complexity but it’s filled with fun in between. Not being bogged down may just be what makes it timeless.

The new Diamond Edition of Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs is a DVD+Blu-ray combo pack and a luxurious mine. In stores it’s available in a DVD box or Blu-ray box. They vary in cover art. The DVD box profiles Snow White in the middle while the Blu-ray box centers the Queen disguised as an old hag holding the evil apple. Either box, they both include two Blu-ray discs, one with the movie, the other with bonus features; and a DVD version of the movie. You could wait until November 24 for the standard-definition DVD of the movie but the Diamond Edition offers the DVD you may be playing now and the Blu-ray you will be playing when the high definition format dominates entirely to become the new standard. It’s coming soon.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs movie image (2).jpgSnow White And The Seven Dwarfs was high-tech for its time and with this new release has kept ahead of the times. Disney, always pioneering new features and technologies has even improved the aspect ratio of the movie. Though the film itself is 1:33:1, you’re able to select the DisneyView option which fills the black edges on the sides which will normally appear on widescreen televisions with new art making it a more unique and enjoyable watch. The Magic Mirror guides the audience through the Blu-ray. The Mirror recognizes viewing patterns, knows where the audience left off and will even suggest where to navigate next. Mirror, Mirror On The Wall with the help of BD-Live can find the secret princess inside each viewer with a quiz, then create a personal message from their favorite princess who will call them on the telephone. If you want some other fun entertainment, the Someday My Prince Will Come music video by Tiffany Thornton won’t disappoint. A few games will also keep kids busy by having them decipher scrambled images and match items in specific orders with Jewel Jumble and What Do You See? There’s also Dopey’s Wild Mine Ride Game, Heigh-Hoe Karaoke Sing-Along.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs movie image (4).jpgIn the Backstage Disney features section, the Blu-ray has audiences transported to discover Hyperion Studios, the original studio Walt Disney himself built where Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs was developed. Viewers will virtually walk its halls, experiencing life at the studios in the 1930’s. You’ll find archival photos, animator recordings; transcripts and rare footage of Walt himself. The One That Started It All featurette reveals how Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs forever changed the world of movies and with another feature you’ll see what the world never mined. It’s called Snow White Returns and features storyboards of a short story that makes you wonder if Walt Disney had a sequel brewing. After that, watch what has been brewing at Walt Disney Studios with an exclusive sneak peak of their upcoming film The Princess And The Frog.

This is the first Diamond Edition package from Disney which kicks off the line that will have other classics released in the coming years. This doesn’t disappoint. I didn’t even mention all the bonus materials included with Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs and it’ll be up to you and your kids to mine for the rest. This is an excellent release and the bonus materials coupled with the high-definition picture and 7.1 Digital Theater System Hi-Def Surround Sound epitomizes what Blu-ray should be delivering with other releases and is with Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs.

So get the fairest of all, Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs, on Disney Blu-ray and DVD.

Film Rating: 5/5

Special Features: 5/5

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