Monday, 15 August 2011

Film: The Black Cauldron

I know what you're thinking: this is supposed to be a toy blog. This is is a film, not a toy - it didn't even have much in the way of associated merchandise. Why are you writing about it? 

Well, I thought I'd branch out a bit. Plus it's my blog so I can do what I like.

I have a special affection for Disney's 1985 film The Black Cauldron. It was one of the first films I ever saw at the cinema and I can remember going with my parents, sister, uncle & cousin. Being one of the first films I saw, it could be responsible for my lifelong enjoyment of horror, fantasy and related 'genre' items.

It was a box office disaster for Disney when it was released. Mostly because there's so little Disney about it. There are no jolly songs, no cheery plot. It's dark. Very dark for a Disney film and the Horned King must be the scariest children's character ever created.

- Correction, Zelda is the scariest children's character ever created.  I had a Terrahawks book when I was small and had to hide it, the grinning picture of Zelda on the front scared me that much. (That said, it didn't stop me watching Terrahawks fascinated) -

The Horned King calls forth an army of the dead! In a Disney film! Gurgi (kind of) commits suicide because no one likes him!

While I say I have an affection for it, it doesn't mean the film is actually any good. While I like its darkness, and the fact it's a 'U' despite being ridiculously scary, there's something not quite right about it. The final battle is good, but the plot kind of wanders about without much direction before reaching it. It's easy to have become bored and have stopped paying attention before you get to that bit.

I've tried to show this to the kids, but they told me to turn it off before we got too far in. The Horned King is that scary.

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