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The Little Mermaid 4K UHD Review

Mermaid.jpg

“The Little Mermaid” gets a new 4K UHD release.

Longing to be a part of the human world, mermaid Princess Ariel decides to make a deal with an evil sea witch (Ursula) in order to become human. Unfortunately, she loses her singing voice and her voice as part of the bargain (there are more caveats I won’t reveal in case you’ve never seen the film). While exploring the surface world, Ariel falls for a Prince named Eric, but their romance is soon interrupted by Ursula who is plotting things that could be catastrophic.

“The Little Mermaid” is often celebrated as being part of the late 80’s and early 90’s renaissance of Disney animated films and it’s not hard to see why. The film is loaded with iconic songs by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman like “Part Of Your World,” “Under The Sea,” “Kiss The Girl,” and “Poor Unfortunate Souls,” the cast of characters from Sebastian the crab to the evil Ursula is among the best in Disney animation history, and Ariel herself is a beloved Princess who is brave, curious, kind and determined to follow her own dreams. Animated Disney films are also at their best (for the most part) when the writers adapt classic stories which is obviously the case here as the movie is based on the Hans Christian Andersen story.

As much as the film has a place in cinema and pop culture history though, the script by John Musker and Ron Clements (who also directed) does feel like it’s missing something. The middle act is rushed, the ending is abrupt, and there’s a nagging feeling that there should be more character and story development. Tacking on 10 or so minutes would have greatly benefited the movie and given it more depth in my humble opinion. Still, what we do get is a movie that has not only continued to endure but also win over the hearts of generations of people now which is a rare thing indeed.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.78:1 2160p. How does it look? While not that significant of an upgrade over the Blu-ray release, the colors are undeniably richer in 4K.

Audio Track: Dolby Atmos. How does it sound? The Atmos track does wonders here. The songs, in particular, have never sounded better.

Extras:
* Blu-ray copy
* Digital copy.
* “Howard’s Lecture”- A tribute to the late lyricist Howard Ashman.
* “Deleted Character: Harold The Merman”- A featurette on the character that never appeared in the film.
* “Under The Scene: The Art Of Live-Action Reference”- This extra covers real life things used as a basis for drawings.
* An informative commentary by Ron Clements, Alan Menken and John Musker.
* The digital version of the film comes with a host of extras from the previous Blu-ray release along with an exclusive extra titled “Part Of Your World- A Look Back” (a featurette on the iconic song).
* A “Part of Your World” music video with Dcapella.
* Disney trailers and a classic bonus preview of “The Little Mermaid.”
* “#Treasuresuntold”- 2 Disney Channel stars reveal facts about the movie.
* “Stories From Walt’s Office: Gadgets And Gizmos”- A new extra that showcases items in Walt Disney’s office along with the history behind them.
* “What I Want From You is…Your Voice”- Footage of 4 voice actors recording lines along with archival interviews. Another new extra!
* “Alan Menken And The Leading Ladies”- A new 15 minute roundtable discussion with Menken and Disney voice acresses Jodi Benson, Paige O’Hara, Judy Kuhn, Lillas White and Donna Murphy.

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March 5, 2019 - Posted by | 4K UHD Review | , , , , , , , , ,

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