Posted in: Disc Reviews by David Annandale on August 21st, 2004
Mickey, Donald and Goofy aspire to being Musketeers, but their respective weakness,cowardice and stupidity stand in their way. All seems lost, until Peg-Leg Pete, the evil captain ofthe Musketeers, finds a use for them for his own dastardly ends: the deposing of Minnie so hecan take the throne himself. Our heroes, of course, rise to the occasion.
Plenty of songs here (some quite witty), and some sharp gags too. The Useful Lessons,however, seem to me rather more hamf…stedly delivered than in the classic cartoons of the past.The animation is a damn sight better than almost any direct-to-video offering out there, but is notup to the Disney in its prime. As well, the voices are noticeably off.
There is lots of terrific placement of sound effects on the audio tracks (5.1 and DTS). In theprologue, for instance, off-screen voices call out from first one speaker, then another, creating ajoyful sense of confusing and chaos. The music sounds fine, though its volume level could beboosted a bit. There is no distortion, and generally the audio is very good indeed.
The picture is a gorgeous 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. The colours are eye-popping, asbright and primary as a Disney cartoon should be. There is no grain whatsoever, nor is there anyflicker or speckling. A superb job all around.
The menu options are a bit odd. The standard menu has animated and scored transitions andintro, while everything else is scored and the main screen has some animation. But you can by-pass all of this by selecting “FastPlay” which plays the film and some special featuresautomatically. The point of this feature escapes me. Anyway, the other features are primarilyaimed at kids, with the exception of the deleted scenes (which are largely in the form ofstoryboards or pencil tests, and come with a commentary).
The music extras are the video for “Three is a Magic Number” and “Disney’s SongSelection” (which jumps to the individual songs in the film). The “Games & Activities” sectionhas two features: “Opera-Toon-Ity” allows you to select sets and characters for little mockoperas, and kids should find this very amusing; “The Many Hats of Mickey” is an interactivesurvey of the roles the mouse has played. “Backstage Disney” has “Get the Scoop” (a standard-issue making-of featurette), and a “cast commentary” where Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Petetalk about the opening janitorial disaster scene. Finally, there’s a raft of ads for DisneyDVDs.
Not a patch on the classic cartoons it emulates, but young viewers should find much to enjoyon this disc.
Special Features List
- Deleted Scenes with Commentary
- “Three Is a Magic Number” Music Video
- Jump to a Song Feature
- “Opera-Toon-Ity” Game
- “The Many Hats of Mickey” Interactive Activity
- “Get the Scoop”Making-of Featurette
- “Cast” Commentary for One Scene