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Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - October, 2011

ARTICLE INDEX

"Dumbo" (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Chris Heinonen

movie-october-2011-dumbo

Synopsis

One day a stork delivers a baby elephant to Jumbo, a female elephant in the circus.    With his gigantic ears, the baby is taunted by the other elephants and nicknamed Dumbo.  As his mother tries to protect him from people taunting him later, she becomes overly aggressive and the circus then keeps her separated from the other elephants, causing Dumbo to be even more depressed.  A mouse, named Timothy, comes along and doesn’t ridicule Dumbo for his large ears, and Dumbo doesn’t act frightened of him as the rest of the elephants in the circus do.  Together, Timothy and Dumbo work to help him overcome his giant ears and turn them from a hindrance to an advantage.

Specifications

  • Disney
  • 1941, Color, Rated G, 1 Hr 4 min
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Codec: AVC
  • 1080p
  • English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring Sterling Holloway, Edward Brophy, James Baskett (voices)
  • Directed by Samuel Armstrong, Norman Ferguson, and 4 others
Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: No
  • Sex: No
  • Language: No

Commentary

Watching some of the older Disney cartoons, they are very dark in nature compared to what you would think.  Dumbo begins very depressingly with him being ridiculed for his ears, and being separated from his mother and really only having Timothy the mouse to turn to for support.  Of course things improve and everyone winds up happy at the end, it was just surprising how dark it was compared to what I remember from being a kid.  It is a film I will watch with my kids going forward.

Technical

I wish everyone handled their catalog titles with the care of Disney, or just let them do the work for them.  Dumbo has never looked so good at home, nor sounded so good.  The animation is crisp and clear, as they obviously put in work to make sure it looked as good as it could.  The soundtrack has been moved from the original mono to a full 7.1 surround track and they’ve done a very nice job of it overall.  It’s not as all enveloping as a current Disney title, but it’s not full of tacky surround effects as it might be from a lesser upgrade as well.  The original mono track is still available if you want it.

Extras

These include the Disney CineExplorer mode for watching the film as experts on the film discuss it, deleted scenes, featurettes, trailers, art galleries, and more.  For a film so old and so short, it’s quite the selection.