For some, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, may very well be the weakest movie in the Disney catalogue. For one, it is mostly made up of three previously-released shorts (with some transitions and a relatively short conclusion that brings things together added). It is also the least thematically challenging of any of the movies they had released up to that point (with the exception of Saludos Amigos and Fun and Fancy Free). But a movie based on A.A. Milne’s books was never going to be something to give food for thought. If anything, it was going just going to be just a cute and entertaining movie with some simple morals. The movie, in the end, turned out to be just that. Because of this, it is acutually one of my favorite Disney movies.
I must say that I only watched this movie for the first time late last year. I grew up watching the Pooh cartoons, so they have a special meaning for me. So maybe I was already meant to love it. But the thing about nostalgia is that it sometimes makes things than they actually are. I remember that the cartoons never talked down to me, and this movie didn’t either (well, it was what started the whole Pooh empire). And watching it as an adult, I didn’t feel like it was too child-oriented. I laughed really hard at some of the jokes, really enjoyed the songs, and, well, loved the whole thing. It really took me back to times when all I had to worry about was what toys I would play with next.
As for things that I would not have noticed as a child, I must say I was impressed. Sure, the animation is rather cheap (they made the money for some quick cash, and boy did they get it), and it shows, but it fits the tone of the movie perfectly. Like I said on my Robin Hood review, after sleeping beauty, it is hard to consider the animation in Disney movies as “great”. The voice cast is perfect, especially Sterling Holloway, who may give his best voice performance here. The music, like I said, is lovely. And that ending, man, it packed an emotional punch that I did not see coming. It’s very laid back and subtle, but so powerful.
I loved this movie. Hopefully the upcoming reboot will be half as good, and hopefully this movie will get a blu-ray release when the new one comes out on Blu as well.