Tuesday, June 25, 2002

I just... I just don't <i>belong</i>.

They screened Lilo & Stitch at work today. Based on the previews, I had no interest in seeing the movie--the message conveyed by the previews was "Hey, he's wacky, you won't believe how wacky he is, come see the movie to find out how wacky he is!" I wasn't sure I could handle all the wackiness.

Plus, I'm generally lukewarm on the Disney Formula: angst-ridden youth, understood by nobody, just doesn't fit in until a zany sidekick accompanies him/her on an adventure which ultimately earns the youth acclaim and self-esteem. (See Aladdin, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, Mulan, Tarzan.)
Out of the blue, The Emperor's New Groove strayed from this formula, and was a fantastic movie. (Notably, it was on track to be a standard musical pseudo-epic, but mid-production was handed over to new writers, who twisted it up and made it great. That's the story I hear, anyway.)

I couldn't tell from the previews how formulaic Lilo & Stitch would be. On a whim, I attended the screening today, and was amazed--it's really good. The Disney Formula is present, but largely subdued, and otherwise the movie is original, funny, and very pretty. (Even more so since the screening was digital.) CG is used sparingly, and works well where it's used. There are even two uses of photographic media (a movie clip and a photo)
integrated with the line art, which I don't recall seeing in any other Disney feature.

Against all odds, Stitch himself (the rabid four-armed blue guy) isn't even annoying. Really.


  1. Four arms? In some of the previews he clearly only has two - what gives? (If it gives away plot, don't respond. :-)

  2. > Four arms? In some of the previews he clearly only has two
    Same guy. He can retract the extra arms. (It's shown in one of the previews.)

  3. Mark VandeWetteringJune 27, 2002 at 7:03 AM

    Surprisingly, I completely agree with tdl. It's a great movie. The best thing that Disney
    feature animation has done in a decade or more. A fairly straightforward story expertly told.