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♠ BAD Disney movies ♠


Mr. Gorman
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Disney has pumped out a lot of decent and watchable movies since the 1930s . . . but like with any other studio there's some clunkers they've released, too.  

What are some Disney movies y'all have seen over the decades that are sub-standard to just plain BAD with a Capital 'B'.  

MIRACLE OF THE WHITE STALLIONS (1963)  A dis-jointed, un-involving mess of a movie.  Somewhere in the 117-minute run time was a decent idea but I didn't think the movie came off well.  See for yourself, but you might need a No-Doz to get through it.  It doesn't look like a 'cheap' movie to me, either.  But the result was rather poor!

THE APPLE DUMPLING GANG (1975)  Some of the so-called "Special FX' in this movie look like something from a 1950s Ed Wood film.  The scenes where Bill Bixby and Susan Clark are riding the stagecoach are hopelessy phony.   The biggest problem, to me, was that the movie wavered between comedy and a few scenes that were decidedly not comedic.  When John McGiver gets hit on the head near the end there should've been a cartoon 'pop' sound given the nature of the movie, but there wasn't.  I couldn't recommend watching this more than once.  (I've seen it more than once because I forgot how lowly it actually is.  Live and learn!  And remember!).  

So what Disney movies are in your doghouse?  

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Ones I've ranked the lowest:

  • Chicken Little (2005)
  • George of the Jungle (1997)
  • Inspector Gadget (1999)
  • My Favorite Martian  (1999)
  • Aladdin (2019)
  • Beauty and the Beast  (2017)

Of their older films, the ones I ranked lowest (and I admit to not watching many of them...not my cuppa)

  • Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo  (1977)
  • Herbies Goes Bananas  (1980)
  • Return from Witch Mountain  (1978)
  • The Shaggy D.A.  (1976)
  • Condorman  (1981)
  • The Barefoot Executive  (1971)
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I've seen THE BAREFOOT EXECUTIVE and THE SHAGGY D.A.

I remember the basic plot of "Barefoot Executive" was about a chimp who could predict television ratings winners!   Had a good cast.  I found "Barefoot Executive" to be what you might call "Par for the Course" in regards to Disney's output at the time:  Watchable but average.  

I reckon I'm just the opposite:  I haven't seen many Disney movies released after 1990 -- 90%+ of all the Disney films I've watched pre-date 1990. 

(I bought BLACKBEARD'S GHOST (1968) from eBay about 10 days ago with one of those old, white clamshell cases.  Couldn't help myself!).

I remember a few Disney movies that were rated 'BOMB' by Leonard Maltin's crew.  Like LT. ROBINSON CRUSOE, USN (1966).  But I've not seen that one yet.  I will hopefully watch it one o'these years and see if it's really as bad as I've read.

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I never cared for PETE'S DRAGON myself (the original, haven't seen the remake). 

Great cast but, the story itself just didn't have that old magic touch for me. Some of the musical numbers were downright hokey to me (especially when the boy's abusive former foster parents confront him and his new foster parents, Helen Reddy and Mickey Rooney). 

The animation I'll cut the filmmakers some slack, since that was what was available at the time.

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Shucks, I forgot all about PETE'S DRAGON and that awful song "Brazzle Dazzle Day".   

I concur that the '77 movie "Pete's Dragon" was not too good.  → The Dragon should have breathed fire on to whoever wrote "Brazzle Dazzle Day"! 

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Well, seein' as how you asked here Mr.G, I suppose I'll now have to admit I never really cared for that 1947 sequel Uncle Walt's boys made back in the day titled Song of The Upper Midwest and Great Lakes Area.

(...nope, not only did I always think the title was WAY too long, but never liked that one character in it named Br'er Moose, either!)

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Dargo, you really gotta see that one in letterbox format.  Pan and scan does nothing for the majestic panoramas of the forests and Great Lakes!  The print that most people see makes it all look the sickly shrubbery in my backyard and a couple of puddles in my neighbor's old alleyway.  Take it from me; I know.  I spent most of my growing-up years around the Great Lakes region.  

Do yourself a favor and see the movie the way it was meant to be shown!

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52 minutes ago, brianNH said:

Dargo, you really gotta see that one in letterbox format.  Pan and scan does nothing for the majestic panoramas of the forests and Great Lakes!  The print that most people see makes it all look the sickly shrubbery in my backyard and a couple of puddles in my neighbor's old alleyway.  Take it from me; I know.  I spent most of my growing-up years around the Great Lakes region.  

Do yourself a favor and see the movie the way it was meant to be shown!

LOL

Aah! Ya know, maybe this WAS the reason I never cared for this particular Disney flick! That whole Pan n' Scan thing!

Yep, now that I think about it, I think that just MIGHT be the ONLY way I've ever watched Song of The Upper Midwest and Great Lakes Area.

Thanks for the heads-up here, my ol' friend! 

(...and ya know, if I CAN ever catch it in letterbox format, I might even come to actually like that Br'er Moose character in it too?!...although, he'd still have to go a long ways to ever replace that other cartoon moose in my heart...you know, that moose from Frostbite Falls, MN)

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5 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Ones I've ranked the lowest:

  • Chicken Little (2005)
  • Inspector Gadget (1999)
  • My Favorite Martian  (1999)

Of their older films, the ones I ranked lowest (and I admit to not watching many of them...not my cuppa)

  • Herbies Goes Bananas  (1980)
  • Return from Witch Mountain  (1978)

Only quoting the ones I agree with--Chicken Little may have singlehandedly lost Michael Eisner his job, after a long struggle of other reasons, and oh, dear lord, was Inspector Gadget a wall-bouncing commercial for Ritalin.   (The direct-video sequel, now on D+, was...tolerable, and even watchable, in that "Third Rock From the Sun"'s French Stewart was put on this earth to play a live-action Inspector, and we don't sit there pitying poor Matthew Broderick:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eeQVMkPg8k )

It's only the presence of Chicken Little that even stops me from wondering whether to put Raya & the Last Dragon on the list, and yes, that's a list that includes The Black Cauldron and Atlantis: the Lost Empire...And Pete's Dragon.  As with all males, Frozen is physical pain for me to watch, but I won't begrudge its technical quality.

And whether or not you hate Return from Witch Mountain depends on your sentimentality for "Escape From" as one of the greatest live-action Disneys of the 70's.  If you think it was, Return is a flat-out slap in the face.

4 hours ago, Mr. Gorman said:

I remember a few Disney movies that were rated 'BOMB' by Leonard Maltin's crew.  Like LT. ROBINSON CRUSOE, USN (1966).  But I've not seen that one yet.  I will hopefully watch it one o'these years and see if it's really as bad as I've read.

It's hard to have a bomb with Dick Van Dyke in it (yes, even "Never a Dull Moment" isn't), although the comic racism with Nancy Kwan and Akim Tamiroff--who seems to be playing an island chief as a homage to the Tazmanian Devil--gets pretty uncomfortable in the last reel.

I can't quite pick out one Dean Jones or Kurt Russell comedy to single out, as they all blur in the memory, and some are even good if you know what you walk into, although Siskel & Ebert both claimed to have reconsidered their careers after Jones' Million-Dollar Duck (1971).

Of the modern films?....Oh, yes.  I'd actually blocked the memory until a few minutes after I'd started writing:  So, you grew up thinking Return to Oz (1985) was a cruel, downbeat, traumatizing, deceptive bait-and-switch on innocent young audiences optimistically hoping for the best?  Wait till you get a load of:

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😱😱😱😱😱

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I have an old Disney tape of MILLION DOLLAR DUCK.  I've even watched it!   No different than other [G]-rated features of its time from Disney.

SUPERDAD (1973) is a little bit different for a [G]-rated Disney flick because of all the girls in bikinis. 

THE WILD COUNTRY (1971) is amazingly violent for a [G]-rated Disney movie; and a few parts of the movie are quite dark, too.  Don't be fooled by the 'G' -rating on this one!  It's not as 'vanilla' as many '60s and '70s Disney flix were!

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On 4/11/2022 at 6:21 PM, Dargo said:

I never really cared for that 1947 sequel Uncle Walt's boys made back in the day titled Song of The Upper Midwest and Great Lakes Area.

😅

On 4/11/2022 at 10:31 PM, EricJ said:

As with all males, Frozen is physical pain for me to watch, but I won't begrudge its technical quality.

All males? (Cringe) That's a sweeping generalization...

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Encanto was disappointing. While it did have a basic story, it was disappointing to me because of the 45 songs. 45!  The characters basically sang every three minutes. (If you've seen the movie, you'll see what I mean.)

I never cared for Lilo and Stitch, but my sister loves it. My sister also loved the Matthew Broderick Inspector Gadget.

OT (somewhat), but someone should do a thread about Best Disney Movies. It would be interesting to see what people chose.

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They sure play differently to you as an adult than when you're a kid.  I didn't realize nothing of Mary Poppins was shot outdoors until seeing it a few years ago.  It's still a fine film, but...

Yeah, Return to Witch Mountain and Pete's Dragon are awful.

 

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