Film Review: Dumbo Returns as Disney's Latest Live Action Flick

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Dumbo has flown in as one of many live action Disney films that are set to come out this year, and Disney spared no expense.

There are many who expected the movie to be just like the original, but surprisingly, there is a lot more human interaction than in the 1941 version. There are still many, many reference scenes that stick to the original like the Pink Elephants and Baby Mine. However, the focus was spread out to other’s emotions and storylines that added a whole other side to the film.

There are some new characters, old characters, and a reference to a few originals. One in particular being the mouse, Timothy. While we do see a mouse that is dressed and acts like Timothy, we don’t see the connectivity from the mouse to Dumbo. However, Danny Devito’s character, Max Medici, reflects much of the personality of Timothy. We were also introduced to many new characters, including some of the members of the Medici Brothers Circus.

Colin Farrell plays a brand new character named Holt, and was one of the most prominent characters within the film. As the father of two kids who grew up in the circus scene, he and his wife were the stars of the show before he lost his arm in the first World War.before the war hit. When Holt comes back however nothing is the way it was. He’s faced with a whole new challenge with one arm and two kids to take care of. Holt’s kids, Millie and Joe, are also playing a prominent role in Dumbo’s story. Millie, striving to be the next Madame Curie, conducts experiments with Dumbo to see what makes him fly. By the end of the film both Joe and Millie help Dumbo build his confidence in flying and help him reunite with his mother.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NiYVoqBt-8

With many new characters with their own stories Disney reflected some of today’s challenges as well. Animal cruelty within the circus being the most prominent was a highlight of the original story and was not forgotten. Within the reboot, Disney amplified the problem with subtle hints that would make anyone’s stomach churn. While there were more obvious hints than others we can see how the mistreatment of exotic animals was the most important message of all.

With the live action Disney film wave coming to life Dumbo was a rather surprising choice to lead the way for future live action films set to come out this year. There are many questions as to why they chose Dumbo to release before Lion King or Aladdin, but there are many aspects with the process of making the film that were out of this world.

The animation quality was fantastic. Disney did not forget about the little details from Dumbo’s eyelashes to the tiny wrinkles in his trunk. Even down to the symbolism of soft colors, it all added to the ambiance of this rather sad story. Again, sparing no expense Disney showed us a brief preview of what’s to come.

Dumbo was beautifully crafted and was showcased in a brand new spotlight. Overall, Tim Burton still pulls at our heartstrings that will make you drop a few tears all the while still being able to include aspects of classic Disney. Since Dumbo isn’t exactly the happiest story of the originals, Dumbo’s new makeover has certainly been beautified for kids of all ages.


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