Mulan

Features, Shorts, Live-Action and Direct-To-Video
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Mulan

Postby Christian » January 25th, 2005, 2:23 am

Now I'll be the first to admit that Mulan II is just another sequel but it is a halfway decent one, but . . . there's a few funny logical errors in Coming Soon's review ( http://www.comingsoon.net/news/dvdreviewsnews.php?id=8041 ):

1. "It comes across like Disney is imposing Western values on the Chinese. That makes Mulan II a little hard to enjoy." I saw this movie on Saturday at the Disney Studios and when I arrived I thought, "I figured there'd be Asian people here but I didn't know there'd be this many." Turns out it was a benefit for Families with Chinese Children, meaning children adopted from China. So there were a LOT of Asian people there but nobody seemed offended by the movie. In fact, everyone loved it and they saw the experience as a chance to celebrate their culture. And the Chinese chicken salad was pretty good too.

2. "The animation in the film is pretty good. It is better that [sic] TV cartoon quality but not as good as Disney's other feature films." Guess what? It's NOT a feature film! It wasn't made by Disney Feature Animation. It still looks pretty darn close but the Coming Soon review is claiming something for the movie that the movie does not claim for itself. (And my rantings here won't make sense until you see the bonus feature on the voices in Mulan II for yourself.)

3. "This feaurette [sic] also seems to go out of its way to avoid mentioning the fact that Eddie Murphy hasn't returned." I'm not sure if I'd say this statement is wrong or not, but I thought the feature had a pretty funny way of dealing with the fact that Eddie Murphy was not on board this time. It's a hard shot to call but to me it seemed like they were definitely NOT going out of their way "to avoid mentioning the fact that Eddie Murphy hasn't returned." They didn't specifically say "Eddie Murphy did not return" (and there's no reason they had to) but they still sort of did bring up the issue when they could've just as easily done nothing.

I agree with a lot of stuff in the article but it'd help if people would not make ill-informed statements, especially since I have a feeling many people will swallow them hook, line and sinker. A lot of people are going to read it and think, "There we go with Disney disrespecting other people's cultures again. Evil, evil Western-centric Disney."
Last edited by Christian on January 25th, 2005, 4:19 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Josh » January 25th, 2005, 2:44 am

What did you think of the movie? I know you stated it is "halfway decent", but could you please be a little more specific? I have actually read some very good things about Mulan II, from people who viewed the film with an open mind. I am still looking forward to seeing it.

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Postby Christian » January 25th, 2005, 3:23 am

To tell you the truth I really thought it was pretty good. It wasn't spectacular by any means but I can't think of any one aspect of it that rubbed me the wrong way. It had a very even, balanced feel to it and on the big screen I saw it on it looked quite good and very nearly feature animation quality. This contrasts significantly with the original DTV title, Return of Jafar, in which nearly every frame had something rubbing me the wrong way. Nobody should confuse this as me saying it's the next "Gone With the Wind" or "Godfather" or "Star Wars" but I did enjoy it on the level I believe it was meant to be enjoyed at.

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Postby Jens » January 25th, 2005, 5:05 pm

Exactly my thoughts Christian! I did have some minnor issues with some scenes in the movie (especially the "Lesson number one" scene), but it was mostly just the animation and some forced scenes that got my attention. But hey, those were all things that I forgot the instance after I noticed it (so it didn't ruïn the movie at any time). There are 2 pretty emotional scenes in this movie:

[hide]The one with Mulan and Shang on the hanging bridge. It doesn't seem that sad when you think about it (I mean, a lot of movies had a scene exactly like that), but something in that scene almost made me cry :$

The other one is the one with Mushu telling Mulan that he's very sorry. That is such an emotional scene! Mark Moseley did such a great job in sounding convincing in that scene.[/hide]

I think those emotional scenes and the Like other girls scene (following the you know what) really made this movie an entertaining sequel that will be enjoyed by many people.
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Postby Christian » January 25th, 2005, 11:44 pm

Well said.

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Postby GeorgeC » January 29th, 2005, 1:04 pm

All this imagined or not controversy aside,

I'm passing on this disc. The only way I'd buy the disc is if they made the extras worthwhile and put on an animated short or Disneyland TV special that I hadn't seen in years.

(I do have to admit I bought one of the earlier direct-to-video sequels precisely BECAUSE there was an animated short on it not available on any other DVD at the time!)

There was just no need to do a sequel to the first Disney Mulan. That film told the story that needed to be told and anybody with an imagination could guess what happened after the curtain closed on the final act...

I saw part of the preview for this disc on TV the other day and I could tell they didn't use Eddie Murphy for this film.

Believe me, people will complain about that (as much as I think Eddie's way overrated nowadays).

They sure didn't like it when Robin Williams didn't do Genie for the first Aladdin sequel and the TV show that followed.

I'm still amazed that people think these direct-to-video sequels and prequels are okay even if they're mediocre. It just goes to demonstrate how far the expectations of quality from Disney by the general public have slid after years of mediocre videos and movies.

Things have really sunk to the lowest common denominator on both sides of the equation. Disney, the company once respected for QUALITY family entertainment, is providing the bare essential BANAL crap that dumb parents keep buying because it's "safe for their kids" or says Disney on it and "must be quality entertainment" because that's how it was for the parents 20-30 years ago when they were children. It's sad that those of us who are smart enough to see what's happening are then putting a stamp of approval on this by saying that it's "okay, but not so bad."

The bar has still been lowered... For the umpteenth million time, if Walt Disney's body hadn't been cremated, it would definitely be rolling over in the grave...

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Postby Josh » January 29th, 2005, 2:54 pm

I'm still amazed that people think these direct-to-video sequels and prequels are okay even if they're mediocre. It just goes to demonstrate how far the expectations of quality from Disney by the general public have slid after years of mediocre videos and movies.


I agree with you to an extent. Yes, I wish that every single DTV sequel had been better, or not made at all. However, at least they are getting better. From what I understand, Bambi and the Great Prince is going to be amazing, according to Jim Hill Media.

Still, that doesn't make up for Cinderella II...

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Postby Ben » January 29th, 2005, 4:02 pm

Well, I was in my retailer today and was heartened to hear a young kid say to her parent that she didn't want any of the Aladdin sequels, Lion King 2 or 3 or Mulan II?

When asked "why not?" by the parent, she said it wasn't "a one", which I thought was really cute. "A one?" asked the parent. "Yeah, they're not Disney ones" (the the emphasis on the "one").

Though she was young, she knew her proper Disney stuff! Great!


Mickey... they shouldn't even be MAKING Bambi II. It's not even a sequel - just another one of those pointless mid-quels. Really, if they'd wanted - or needed - to explore what will happen in Bambi II, don't you think the original would have been longer and/or had this exposition in the middle of the film?

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Postby Josh » January 29th, 2005, 5:25 pm

What defines whether a sequel is "pointless" or not? Was Toy Story 2 needed? I mean, it wasn't like Toy Story left a lot of unanswered questions. Yet you yourself, Ben, have said that Toy Story 2 is the best CGI film ever, which I definitely agree with.

Whether it should be made or not, Bambi and the Great Prince is coming. I think we just be hoping that it really is excellent then, instead of hoping it tanks.

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Postby PatrickvD » January 29th, 2005, 5:59 pm

Ben wrote:Well, I was in my retailer today and was heartened to hear a young kid say to her parent that she didn't want any of the Aladdin sequels, Lion King 2 or 3 or Mulan II?

When asked "why not?" by the parent, she said it wasn't "a one", which I thought was really cute. "A one?" asked the parent. "Yeah, they're not Disney ones" (the the emphasis on the "one").

Though she was young, she knew her proper Disney stuff! Great!


That is awesome. My 10 year old cousin is exactly like that. She has one sequel on dvd, Cinderella 2 and she found it so horrible she now considers all sequels as "not official". Of course Cinderella 2 is the extreme end of how disastrous these DTV's can be, but it's cute how she is only willing to watch "classics" and Pixars. :D

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Postby Macaluso » January 29th, 2005, 6:13 pm

The Rescuers Down Under, Lion King 1 1/2, and An Extremely Goofy Movie were the only sequels I liked.

Rescueres I liked better than the first, and I don't think 1 1/2 and an extremely goofy movie tried to live up to the original.

EDIT: Oh, and Toy Story 2.

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Goofy Movie

Postby ShyViolet » January 29th, 2005, 6:36 pm

Y'know, as it weird as it may seem, the original Goofy Movie was considered to be a "lesser" film when it came out (1995) even though it had a theatrical release. Sort of along the lines of "Return of Jafar" except not DTV.
Now it seems a million times better than most of what Disney does. :roll:
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Postby Macaluso » January 29th, 2005, 7:05 pm

A Goofy Movie is still one of my favorite Disney movies.
I love the art style, and I love how much I can identify with both Goofy AND Max. Being able to understand how had it would be for Goofy as a dad, specially as a single dad, and also, being a teenager, able to see it from Max's view too.

And the songs were awesome :P

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Postby Jens » January 29th, 2005, 7:34 pm

Believe me, Bambi and the Great Prince of the Forest will be great. At least artisticly... I'll get some screenshots from the preview on the Bambi DVD to you guys a.s.a.p. :) I've seen the shots, and they're AMAZING. Don't get your hopes up though, I don't want you to get OVERexcited :P
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Postby Josh » January 29th, 2005, 7:49 pm

Does the preview for Bambi and the Great Prince give a better glimpse of what the story will be about, or is it one of those previews that just shows a lot of shots and says, "Bambi and the Great Prince, coming this ______ to video and Disney DVD"?