Reviews / 28.07.2021

Back in 2003, the world initially scoffed at the idea of a film based on a Disneyland ride. Admit it. You thought Disney had lost their mind. There were few who expected Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl to be particularly good, let alone score Johnny Depp his first Oscar nomination and launch a wildly successful franchise that would ultimately net more than $4.5 billion at the worldwide box office. Given that franchise has fizzled in recent times (a reboot appears to be on...

The House of Mouse Project / 12.07.2021

The one that was made at home. 2020 will be remembered for many god-awful things we'd all like to forget. For movie lovers, it was the year the world of film ground to a halt. With cinema shutdowns, release date delays, and film festival cancellations, there was little joy for those of us who regularly spend time inside the hallowed walls of a movie theatre. In the midst of a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders from the California government, Walt Disney Animation Studios was faced with the daunting task...

Reviews / 08.06.2021

Now that WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier have firmly established the television spin-off world of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's time to turn our attention to the franchise's favourite mischievous scamp. The MCU has delivered a chequered roster of villains over the past decade. While there's been the highs of Avengers: Infinity War's Thanos and Black Panther's Erik Killmonger, there's also the lows of Iron Man 2's Whiplash and Thor: The Dark World's Malekith. But the most enduring villain of this lengthy saga has undoubtedly been...

Reviews / 27.05.2021

In the late 1950s, Walt Disney was genuinely on the verge of shutting down his beloved animation department after the artistically brilliant but commercially disappointing Sleeping Beauty almost bankrupted Walt Disney Productions. It would fall to an inexpensively produced animated animal caper to save Disney animation, and, in the process, give birth to one of the studio's most enduring villains. Designed by the legendary Marc Davis and voiced by the indomitable Betty Lou Gerson, the maniacal Cruella de Vil completely stole the show in One Hundred and One Dalmatians...

Reviews / 19.03.2021

After the breath of fresh air that was WandaVision, the MCU returns to its roots with its next blockbuster Disney+ television series, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Following in the footsteps of Wanda and co. will prove to be both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, the hugely popular series revived the public's interest in the Marvel universe after a total void of new content from Marvel Studios for more than 18 months. On the other, it set a new benchmark for daringly unique...

Reviews / 02.03.2021

After a slight release date delay and a change in release strategy, Walt Disney Animation Studios is finally ready to unveil their 59th animated feature film. In what will stand as one of the first big blockbusters of 2021, Raya and the Last Dragon is the breath of fresh air we all need after months of lockdown. With all the hallmarks of classic Disney animation, it's a dazzling, entertaining delight that gifts the world a courageous new Disney heroine for the ages and a hilarious, loveable sidekick who...

Reviews / 15.01.2021

2020 will be remembered for many, many things. In the world of cinema, it will stand as the year of a hundred release date delays. This also meant it was the first year without a film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe since 2009. Naturally, that was never intended to be the case. But when a global pandemic saw both Black Widow and Eternals punted to 2021, the MCU lay silent for the first time in over a decade. While we still await these two new cinematic entries (barring any...

Awards Season, Reviews / 21.12.2020

One of the biggest tragedies of all the cinematic casualties of 2020 is the difficult fact Soul will stand as the first Pixar film to not receive a theatrical release. As will undoubtedly be the case for many of you, Soul will sadly be the first Pixar release this film critic does not see inside a cinema. The bitter disappointment is only compounded by the realisation this film is easily their most visually ambitious and experimental to date and deserved to be seen on the big screen. But this...

Reviews / 25.11.2020

After five feature films, a TV mini-series, and a Hanna-Barbera animated television film, you'd think Anna Sewell's classic 1877 equine novel Black Beauty: His Grooms and Companions, the Autobiography of a Horse had seen enough adaptations for one lifetime. But it's been over a quarter of a century since the titular horse last graced our screens, so, of course, it's time for another version, and this time it's brought to you by Disney. Over 50 years after the House of Mouse released an LP featuring a radio program...

Reviews / 06.09.2020

If you're still recovering from the terrible trio of Disney live-action remakes we were served in 2019, the idea of another cherished animated classic being lazily rehashed in 2020 is likely the last thing you're yearning for in the middle of a global pandemic. After the soulless shot-for-shot remakes The Lion King and Aladdin and the ambitious misfire that was Dumbo, something decently competent like Mulan ultimately looks like a masterpiece by fortunate virtue of comparison to a string of disappointments. After seeing its March big screen debut scuttled...