Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

The Little Mermaid (2-Disc Special Edition)

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
10 out of 10
Extras Rating:
10 out of 10
Movie Details:
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Rating: G

Starring:
Rene Auberjonois as Louis (voice)
Christopher Daniel Barnes as Prince Eric (voice)
Jodi Benson as Ariel (voice)
Pat Carroll as Ursula (voice)
Paddi Edwards as Flotsam & Jetsam (voice)
Buddy Hackett as Scuttle (voice)
Jason Marin as Flounder (voice)
Kenneth Mars as King Triton (voice)
Edie McClurg as Carlotta (voice)
Will Ryan as Seahorse (voice)
Ben Wright as Grimsby (voice)
Samuel E. Wright as Sebastian (voice)

Special Features:
All-New "Kiss The Girl" Music Video Performed By Ashley Tisdale

"Under the Sea" Adventure: A Virtual Ride Inspired by Disney Imagineering -- Experience the Theme Park Ride That Was Almost Built -- Ride It and Go Behind the Scenes

DisneyPedia: Life Under the Sea -- Learn About the Real-Life Animals That Inspired the Movie Characters

Never-Before-Seen Deleted Scenes

Exclusive Animated Short, "The Little Match Girl"

Treasures Untold: The Making of Disney's "The Little Mermaid"

"The Little Mermaid III" Musical Sneak Peek

Commentary by co-writers/directors John Musker and Ron Clements and composer Alan Menken

Song selection

Storm Warning: "The Little Mermaid" Special Effects Unit

The Story Behind the Story: featurette on author Hans Christian Anderson

Art galleries

Early presentation reel

"Silent is Golden" song demo

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.78:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Disney Enhanced Home Theater Mix
5.1 Disney Enhanced Home Theater Surround Sound
Running Time: 83 Minutes

Synopsis:
"The Little Mermaid" was originally released in 1989. The following is from the DVD cover:

"'The Little Mermaid,' one of the most celebrated animated films of all time -- and winner of two Academy Awards® (Best Music, Original Score; Best Music, Original Song, "Under the Sea," 1989) -- splashes onto an exciting 2-Disc DVD with an all-new digital restoration. Ariel, a fun-loving and mischievous mermaid, is off on the adventure of a lifetime with her best friend, the adorable Flounder, and the reggae-singing Caribbean crab Sebastian at her side. But it will take all of her courage and determination to make her dreams come true—and save her father's beloved kingdom from the sneaky sea witch Ursula! Dive into a world of music and adventure in this new 2-Disc Platinum Edition your family will enjoy again and again!"

"The Little Mermaid" is rated G.

Mini-Review:
Since "The Little Mermaid" has been out for 17 years, a lot of people out there have seen it and already know how good it is. However, there is a whole new generation of fans who have yet to discover it and this DVD release is the perfect opportunity for them to do just that. With a restored picture and soundtrack, it's better than ever. My daughter picked up this DVD and ended up watching it over and over during a 6 hour road trip.

The most notable thing about the film is the soundtrack – it is arguably the best of the Disney animated features. "Kiss the Girl," "Under the Sea," "Part of Your World," and others are way better than any songs in recent memory and you'll be humming them long after the film is over. They are a large part of why this movie worked and why Disney Animation was rejuvenated.

Like all of the other Disney Platinum Edition DVDs, the bonus features are unparalleled. Every imaginable aspect of the making of the film was covered. But even I was shocked when Jeffrey Katzenberg appeared on the making-of video. After a much publicized bad split with Disney, it was really cool to see him come back and talk about the film he was very much a part of. A number of surprising guest stars also take part in the documentary including Frank Oz, John Waters, and others. A few surprising revelations were also made – namely Ursula was patterned after the drag queen Devine. The making-of video ends up being a really, really interesting documentary.

A number of other bonus features are also included. There's a pop-music video of "Kiss the Girl" performed by Ashley Tisdale (yet another of the generic teen pop stars they offer up). There's an interesting documentary on a "Little Mermaid" ride for Disneyland that was scrapped. They have a virtual version of the ride along with interviews with the creators. Your standard offerings are also here including deleted scenes (which reveal Triton and Ursula were siblings), DisneyPedia: Life Under the Sea, commentary with the film, sing-alongs, art galleries, a feature on Hans Christen Anderson, a sneak preview of "The Little Mermaid III," and more. You'll also find an animated short, "The Little Match Girl," based on another Anderson story. If it doesn't make you tear up, you might just be a heartless robot.

Whether you have kids to entertain or if you grew up watching "The Little Mermaid," this DVD is a worthy addition to your collection.

Order this DVD @ Amazon

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