The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh Blu-ray Review
I don’t like to brag but Winnie the Pooh and I are good friends. OK, not really. Though this past May I did run into him at a character lunch while visiting Walt Disney World. Nice guy, liked to hug. Didn’t say much. Still, as a grown man who felt like a little boy I insisted on having my photo taken with him.
Since “The Little Mermaid,” much has been made of the animated films that originate from the Disney Studios. But their magic didn’t start in 1989. It started in the 1930s and really never stopped. 1977 brought the popular bear Winnie the Pooh and his friends to the big screen in the delightfully told THE MANY ADVENTURES OF WINNIE THE POOH.
Based on the works of author A. A. Milne, the film begins with an introduction to Pooh, a jolly, round bear that has a weakness for anything Huny (that’s honey to you and I). Pooh lives in the Hundred-Acre Wood with his friends, the best of which is the young boy Christopher Robin. Christopher and Pooh are best friends and an adventure isn’t really an adventure unless they’re both involved. Most of these adventures revolve around Pooh and his quest for Huny. Other adventures take place with other friends like Eyore the Donkey, Piglet, Owl and the mother/son pairing of Kanga and Roo. But rest assured, whether it’s getting an overfed bear out of a hole, down after dangling from a balloon as if one was a raincloud or bouncing all over creation with a new friend, THE MANY ADVENTURES OF WINNIE THE POOH is highly entertaining.
The film is a combination of three early Disney shorts: WINNIE THE POOH AND THE HONEY TREE, WINNIE THE POOH AND THE BLUSTERY DAY and WINNIE THE POOH AND TIGGER TOO. They are connected by new animation and narration by the soothing voice of the late Sebastian Cabot. The vocal cast is an impressive collection of some of the most popular television actors of the time: John Fieldler (THE BOB NEWHART SHOW), Hal Smith (THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW), Clint Howard (GENTLE BEN) and, of course, the voice of the boisterous and bouncy Tigger, Paul Winchell. Together these characters form a rare friendship; one that they all know will last forever. Also lending their voices are Howard Morris, Ralph Wright and the long-time voice of Winnie the Pooh, Sterling Holloway.
Drawn in the popular animation style of the time, THE MANY ADVENTURES OF WINNIE THE POOH is not loud and flashy like the Disney animated films that would begin with THE LITTLE MERMAID, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST all the up to today. That being said, the film is still a visual showcase for children of every age and a must see for fans of the yellow bear and his friends in the Hundred Acre Wood! No matter if you are seeing the film for the first time or the hundredth, THE MANY ADVENTURES OF WINNIE THE POOH is a must have for fans of all ages.
THE MANY ADVENTURES OF WINNIE THE POOH BLU-RAY REVIEW
Video: The animation is sharp and clear and the colors vibrant, especially the delightfully striped Tigger. Presented in a 1:66.1 aspect ratio.
Audio: The film offers two different sound processes in English: DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 as well as Dolby Digital 2.0. The film contains many songs and the accompanying music and dialogue is clear and clean sounding.
Pooh Play-Along (2:08): Encourages kids of all ages to exercise by bouncing with Tigger and marching with Christopher Robin.
Mini Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (12:27): Five “Winnie the Pooh” short films: “If I Wasn’t So Small,” “Piglet’s Drawings,” “The Expedition,” “Geniuses” and “The Honey Song.”
A Day for Eyore (25:19): An animated short feature from 1983 featuring the sleepy-voiced Eyore.
The Story Behind the Masterpiece (25:31): A well put together featurette which not only documents the making of the film but also highlights the popular A.A. Milne books that it is based upon.
Theme Song (3:03): The popular song (“tubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff”) performed by Carly Simon.