The Couch Potato Report – March 1st, 2005
This week The Couch Potato Report has Bambi, Bob, and Ed Grimley, well that’s certainly decent don’t you know?
Walt Disney’s classic film BAMBI was originally released on August 13th, 1942.
Let me say that again, BAMBI was originally released 63 years ago on August 13th, 1942.
The new PLATINUM EDITION of the classic film doesn’t show it’s age, instead the film has never looked or sounded better.
But the fact that it has been given a digital makeover still won’t change the fact that the youth of today probably won’t be able to appreciate this film the way that I, and my generation do.
The movies of today – animated or otherwise – are just so faced paced, and the edits are so quick and swift, that there is precious little time to just watch something and let it sweep over you.
And BAMBI certainly isn’t fast paced. It is just a well-crafted, leisurely view of one year in the life of a young deer.
In the course of the movie’s 69-minute running time, that one year measures the life cycle itself, from birth to adulthood, and from childhood’s freedom to grown-up responsibility.
There is a lot of territory covered in BAMBI – parental love, loss and grief; friendship; loyalty; risk versus need; living in harmony with Nature, and romantic love – but the film never force feeds you anything.
BAMBI is storytelling in it’s purest, basic form.
Plus, the film has been completely digitally restored for DVD and almost every trace of dirt and damage is gone and the sound is incredible.
Since the film is being released as a PLATINUM EDITION 2-disc set, there is a wide array of bonus features.
They include a look at the authentic art materials stored in the vaults, a making of feature; a Disney Time Capsule from 1942; facts about the real animals that are portrayed in the film and a “dramatic reenactment” reading of early discussions of the film between Walt Disney and his team.
Patrick Stewart, of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION fame, hosts that latter segment.
No, BAMBI doesn’t move with the speed of THE INCREDIBLES, contain as many colours as FINDING NEMO, and isn’t as funny as the SHREK films, but I hope this generation of kids will be able to enjoy it.
It is an elegant work of art that belongs on the shelf beside all of those films in your DVD library.
In a time when the world “classic” gets used too often, BAMBI is the definition of that word.
Want proof? Watch the movie.
I’m not sure if anyone will be saying THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE is a classic when that film celebrates it’s 63rd anniversary in 2067, but as I sit here today, I know many kids – and an adult or two – who believe it to be a modern day classic of the highest regard.
To quote an old soap commercial, “And I like it too!”
If you don’t know who SpongeBob is, please allow me to explain:
“SpongeBob SqaurePants” is an animated television show.
Deep down in the Pacific Ocean in the city of Bikini Bottom lives a square yellow sea sponge named SpongeBob SquarePants. SpongeBob lives in a pineapple with his pet snail, Gary, loves his job as a fry cook at the Krusty Krab, and has a knack for getting into trouble without really trying.
When he’s not getting on his cranky neighbor Squidward’s nerves, SpongeBob’s usually smack in the middle of a strange situation with his best starfish buddy, Patrick, or his thrill-seeking squirrel pal, Sandy Cheeks.
Like the TV show, THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE has some jokes that operate on different levels for kids and adults.
In the movie, SpongeBob and Patrick take leave from the town of Bikini Bottom to track down King Neptune’s stolen crown.
It isn’t Dostoyevsky but it is sure fun to watch!
No, the film isn’t as great as the best of the TV episodes, but THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE is a silly, goofy movie that is fun for both children and adults.
And to paraphrase an old soap commercial, “Yes, I like it too!”
I also like SCTV and SCTV – VOLUME 3 is the latest release of this classic Canadian show.
Inside the 5-disc box set are nine 90-minute episodes that were originally broadcast in 1982.
In addition to the work of John Candy, Rick Moranis, Dave Thomas, Andrea Martin, Catherine O’Hara, Joe Flaherty and Eugene Levy, this set contains the introduction of the great Martin Short as a cast member.
By the time these episodes aired in 1982, the show had built on it’s cult following and was flirting with mainstream success.
They had won an Emmy Award for writing and there was worldwide “Hoser-mania” triggered by the surprise breakout success of “The Great White North” segments featuring Bob and Doug McKenzie.
But SCTV managed to stay fresh and innovative and gave Bob & Doug their own special called “The Great White North Palace” and brought Tony Bennett in to guest star.
This set also includes “The People’s Global Golden Choice Awards,” “The Battle of the PBS Stars,” “Chariots Of Eggs,” and the introduction of the soap-opera parody “The Days of the Week,” as well as the Schmenge brothers.
Plus, Martin Short joins the legendary ensemble, and makes an instant impression, with such masterful bits as his devastating “Jerry Lewis Live on the Champs Elysees,” and gives us the unforgettable Ed Grimley.
Plus, Bill Murray, Carl Perkins, Jimmy Buffett and Hall And Oates offer classic performances.
The set’s bonus features include commentaries, a John Candy profile and photo gallery, a retrospective, SCTV at the Museum of Television & Radio, a bonus audio CD: From the Second City Stage and a 16-page booklet
Yes, in a day and age when the world “classic” gets used too often, SCTV remains a classic television show and BAMBI is a classic film.
And to the kids today, THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE is a classic as well.
All three of those classics are available now at a movie store near you.
COMING UP IN THE NEXT COUCH POTATO REPORT
In LADDER 49 a trapped firefighter reevaluates his life and priorities. John Travolta , Joaquin Phoenix and Morris Chestnut star.
Academy Award winner Cliff Robertson stars in CHARLEY. This 1968 film that was adapted from Daniel Keyes’s novel Flowers for Algernon is finally being released on DVD.
And so is THE RUTLES 2 – CAN’T BUT ME LUNCH. Yes, the Pre-Fab Four are back, and severely earnest television journalist S.J. Krammerhead is hot on their story once again. This is a welcome sequel to Monty Python star Idle’s 1978 mockumentary THE RUTLES – ALL YOU NEED IS CASH.
I’m Dan Reynish and I will have more on THE RUTLES, and those other releases in seven days.
For now, that’s this week’s COUCH POTATO REPORT.
Enjoy the movies and The Oscars and I’ll see you back here next week on The Couch!
The Couch Potato Report – March 1st, 2005