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Showing posts from July, 2015

Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf

For such a significant entry into the Disney film canon, Fantasia hasn't a huge presence at any of the Disney theme parks.  One notable attraction though is the Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf at the Garden Pavilions.  

It looks beautiful.  There are 18 holes themed around various segments from Fantasia, namely: Toccata and Fugue, The Nutcracker Suite, Pastoral Symphony, Dance of the Hours and, naturally, The Sorcerer's Apprentice.  There are statues, topiary and floorings reflecting each piece of animation.  There are various twists and turns to each of the holes and they involve music and water effects which are triggered by the golf balls.  It's apparently open all day and into the night but is very popular of an evening with waiting times of over an hour to play!  I can imagine it is a popular destination for people leaving the parks during the day for something different to do of an evening so can well believe the advice in one video I found suggesting you get there ea…

Fantasia: Deleted Scenes

As mentioned in my review of Fantasia, one of Walt Disney's original ideas was to re-release the film on a regular basis with various new sequences swopped in.  This never happened but I did find details about a bunch of sequences which had been planned.  Here's a link to Disney wiki (rather than just have me rewrite it all - the pictures included are very interesting).  I particular like the look of the Adventures in a Perambulator - the point of view of a baby in its pram.

There was also one sequence which was intended for inclusion in the original Fantasia, set to the piece of music Clair de Lune.

It is horrendously dull.  The music is unmemorable and the animation accompanying it equally so.  It involves two egrets flying around a dark, watery, bayou.  Hardly anything happens and visually it is very uninteresting.  The bayou is very dark and little detail is included.  There are repeated shots of the moon mirrored in the water and of the egrets swooping around.  It is easy t…


A Disney Tale: As you will probably know, Fantasia is not a film with a plot.  It was designed to be a concert feature: a series of music pieces with accompanying animation.  The segments include: an abstract piece to Toccata and Fugue; a Greek myth-inspired animation set to the Pastoral Symphony; fairies assisting nature to the soundtrack of the Nutcracker Suite; hippos, crocodiles, ostriches and elephants dancing to the Dance of the Hours; a terrifying visit to Bare Mountain; the evolution of dinosaurs set to the Rite of Spring and, of course, the classic Mickey Mouse animation - The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

Disney Heroines: Although there is no 'Disney Princess' as such, in this feature, there are numerous female characters, mostlyof a magical nature; fairies and centaurs for example.  It's interesting to note how the fairies in the Nutcracker Suite segment are using their magic to assist nature in a similar way to how the Tinker Bell films show fairies ha…


When researching Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs various spin-offs, I found a bizarre short cartoon called Seven Wise Dwarfs which promoted an aspect of the Canadian war effort during the Second World War.

Looking into Pinocchio, I found another spin-off I had no knowledge of - a series of short cartoon's featuring Figaro the cat.  I find it odd that Disney decided to take the character of Figaro out of the film and place him in his own series of shorts; particularly as he is suddenly living in 'modern' times and is the pet of Minnie Mouse!  But apparently, Figaro was extremely popular with audiences and these cartoons were the result.

Figaro's first cartoon is called Figaro and Cleo and, as the title tells you, also features Cleo the goldfish from Pinocchio.  This film was released in 1943.  Further films followed with more or less one a year until 1949.

Figaro and Cleo is a very Tom and Jerry-esque affair.  It even has a character extremely similar to the controversial …

Pinocchio Miscellaneous

Pinocchio also appears in two other attractions at Disney parks.

Firstly the film has a large presence in Disneyland California's Storybook Land Canal Boats.  The beginning of the ride sees boats pass through the mouth of Monstro the Whale (possibly why this isn't a feature of the dark ride) and then on to see various miniature scenes of Disney films, one of which is Geppetto's village.

I will review Storybook Land Canal Boats - and its Disneyland Paris equivalent - in more detail in the future as it is a ride themed around a number of different films rather than being Pinocchio-centric.

I do like the idea of travelling through Monstro's mouth, though (in Paris it is the opening to the Cave of Wonders instead).

Pinocchio also has a presence in Fantasmic! with both Pinocchio and Monstro the Whale appearing at various points in all three versions of the show (at Walt Disney Hollywood Studios; Disneyland California and Tokyo DisneySea).

I have seen the Hollywood Studios versi…

Les Voyages de Pinocchio

Again, with this classic dark ride, I've titled it with the French name as this is the version I have most recently ridden.

Les Voyages de Pinocchio has guests enter a ornate, wooden entrance modelled on the buildings seen in the film.  After the usual twisty, turny queue, riders climb into carts not dissimilar to those on the Snow White dark ride.  These ones are decorated with images of Figaro and Cleo.

The riders first enter doors with the legend: Stromboli; Theatre de Marionettes.  On the other side we find Pinocchio on stage dancing with two other marionettes.  The bright, cheerful theatre is very quickly replaced by a dark, forbidding corridor leading up to the fierce figure of Stromboli himself.  On the way we pass tiny Jiminy Cricket.  We pass by Pinocchio, trapped in a cage and then find ourselves in one too before passing through on our way to Pleasure Island.  Again, we pass Jiminy Cricket; this time floating from above us on his umbrella.  

The riders then take a tour of …

Pinocchio's Village Haus

Pinocchio's Village Haus is a counter service restaurant at Disney World Florida, themed around Pinocchio.  There are carvings and wall paintings around the restaurant depicting characters such as Geppetto, Pinocchio, Cleo and Monstro the Whale.  The building matches the 'European' feel of the film.  

The music playing is very much in the German/Austrian/Swiss 'oompah' band tradition - accordion, yodelling, large brass instruments etc.  Part of the loop plays instrumental arrangements of Heigh Ho and Whistle While You Work before moving on to a slightly odd arrangement of I've Got No Strings and other more generic 'oompah' music.

It also has a balcony area which overlooks the embarkation point of It's A Small World allowing guests to wave at each other as they float on their boats into that classic ride.

I've never eaten in it but the food looks fairly standard for the sort of restaurant it is.

The theming is lovely and the music is pleasant.  This…