Various Directors. (2000-2014, 79 min). WALT DISNEY STUDIOS
Disney's full length animated features may get all the hype and attention, but their short subjects are nearly always as creatively entertaining, sometimes more so. I always had the impression the shorts were where Disney animators, unburdened by commercial expectations, really got to turn loose stretch their creative wings. This diverse collection features 12 of their best shorts since 2000.
Animation styles vary from film to film, from traditional to CG, though all are impeccably crafted. Narratively, stories range from the brilliantly comic (Mickey Mouse's visually astounding "Get a Horse" & Goofy's welcome return in "How to Hook Up Your Home Theater") to the totally tragic ("The Little Matchgirl," from Hans Christian Andersen's story, might be the most heartbreaking seven minutes Disney ever produced).
Oscar winners "Paperman" & "Feast" are included, as well as many other shorts which played with Disney's theatrical features, such as "The Ballad of Nessie," "Frozen Fever" and "Tangled Ever After." My personal favorite (if I had to pick one) would be "Tick Tock Clock," which was never included with any theatrical film or DVD release and reminded me of a lost Fantasia segment (I later discovered it actually was supposed to be part of a since-abandoned Fantasia 2006 project, as were "Lorenzo" and "The Little Matchgirl"). The oldest film, "John Henry," dates back to 2000, and while it's still a wonderful take on the old legend, it's arguably the weakest of the lot, an indication of just how great all the others are.
Most of these shorts have been previously included as bonus features on other DVDs in recent years. However, they provide a supremely unique & entertaining experience when viewed collectively, especially with new intros by their creators which precede each film. Disney and animation fans will be hard-pressed to find a more entertaining batch of shorts on a single disc (yes, it's even better than the Pixar collections). This one a must-own and, so far, the best single-disc Blu-Ray release of the year.
- @DisneyAnimation: An insightful featurette which looks at various animators' efforts to create modern Disney shorts
- DVD & Digital Copies