Archive for March, 2010

Cantina de San Angel squared

Sunday, March 14th, 2010

Construction walls are up and Disney World’s Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion’s Cantina de San Angel restaurant is expanding. According to a blog that purports to be from Disney but is filled with spelling errors and hosted in Russia: “Cantina de San Angel is just too popular for its current size. Over the course of the next few months, the restaurant will double in capacity and be renamed ‘Cantina de San Angel^2′ — pronounced ‘Cantina de San Angel to the power of dos’. In keeping with the new theme, flavor, portions, prices, and wait times will also be doubled.”

To accommodate the new, larger restaurant, the Mexico Pavilion’s pyramid will also be expanded, receiving a second peak. Said someone near the construction site who was holding a hammer, “This is exactly how the Mexican natives would have done it, if they had thought of it, which they didn’t.”

The Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros attraction will also be doubled in length, becoming the Gran Fiesta Tour^2 Starring the Six Caballeros (of which four of the caballeros will be Donald, because there was so much excitement the last time he was added to the attraction). The decision to rename the attraction is already a bit controversial, particularly amongst mathematicians who point out that three caballeros squared is nine caballeros, not six, and the caballeros should also be squared if you want to keep your units consistent.

Shermans’ window

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

Last week, the Sherman brothers were honored with their own window on Disneyland’s Main Street. The Sherman’s are — in case you are deaf, are one of those heathens who prefers Magic Mountain, or have forgotten — the creators of such classic Disneyland songs as “The Tiki Tiki Tiki Room,” “There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow,” and “It’s a Small World.”

Their window reads, “Sherman Brothers Trepanation. You Can’t Get Us Out of Your Head.”

New Pixar Short

Friday, March 12th, 2010

Pixar has announced that the short accompanying the highly anticipated Toy Story 3: Lost in New York will be titled “Day and Knight.” Said John Lasseter’s personal shirt architect, “This short will finally answer the Internet-hotbutton question, what would happen if Doris Day and Ted Knight had had a baby?”

Imitating film

Friday, March 12th, 2010

An article on AOL Health (“All The News That’s Fit for Hypochondriacs”) reports that children all around the country are being infected by salmonella, breaking out in warts, and hungering for flies after kissing frogs in imitation of Disney’s animated feature The Princess and the Frog. There have even been reports of children in France becoming so orally fixated on frogs that they are actually eating the things! The story seems ridiculous on its face (for example, not even a crazy person would eat a reptile, and everyone knows you get salmonella from salmon, not frogs), but it does have an echo of truth in it — over the years, there have been many cases of children doing silly things in imitation of Disney films.

For example:

  • In the 1950s, little boys all across the country, in imitation of their TV hero Davy Crockett, donned raccoon-skin caps and ran for Congress.
  • The popular Frisbee toy was invented to sate children yearning to imitate the disc-battling antics of their movie hero Tron.
  • After the release of Beauty and the Beast, little girls followed the movie heroine’s lead and began to read books for entertainment (much to the annoyance of film-based corporations, causing Disney to focus its next animated film, Aladdin, on a more commercial female role model — a marriage-obsessed princess in scanty clothes who hangs out with big, fluffy animals).
  • Many children who saw Toy Story subsequently wanted toys.

This is not to say that The Princess and the Frog has had no impact on children. Quit the contrary — although there are no reliable reports of children doing anything so ridiculous as kissing frogs, a number of youths in the southern U.S. have been devoured (whole or in part) while trying to teach alligators to play jazz music.

DisneyLies Official Best & Worst: Disney Characters

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Best

  • Mickey Mouse: After a little problem with musical animal abuse in his early years, he grew up to be a real nice guy.
  • Buzz Lightyear: He can kick any other Disney character’s backside (as vividly demonstrated in the Disney Channel’s Toon Wars).
  • Any princess: Sure they can get annoying after a while, but they are merchandising gold.

Worst

  • Little Red: From the educational film for young ladies, “Make Mine Menstruation.”
  • Tommy the Terrible Toilet: You’ll have been traumatized by him in the classic short “Practically Perfect Plumbing.”
  • Hitler: Sure, it’s only a cameo in Fantasia, but it’s Hitler.

The return of EO

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Now that we’ve had a chance to see the resurrected Captain EO more than 100 times, we feel confident that we can give it a fair review.

Fortunately, EO is just as wonderful as we remember it — the dancing, the singing, the women fainting in the aisles, were all there just like they were the first time, back in 1969 when the original film premiered in Tomorrowland. True, there have been changes made over the years. We all remember the original classic, which followed the Jacsonnauts 5 from their crash on an alien world to their confrontation with the aliens and “cabin boy Michael” teaching the evil queen her “ABCs”. For the 1986 revival, four of the human spacemen were replaced by muppets and Anjelica Huston had replaced the unavailable /deceased Joan Crawford as the evil queen. But, if anything, the music was even better, the choreography stronger, the lasers more super awesome, and the robot just as relevant to the art of dance as it is today.

The new, third-generation EO is very similar to the 1986 version. The biggest differences are in the special effects, which had to be changed because of how quickly EO replaced Honey I Shrunk the Audience! (known to some fans as Honey, I Shrunk the Audience’s Interest in Visiting This Attraction a Second Time!) So there’s no more opening starfield, no more lazers, no more smoke, but when EO’s ship’s door first opens, you do get the startlingly realistic sensation that your feet are being overrun by escaping space-mice.

The most noticeable change in the film is in the part of EO himself. Due to Michael Jackson’s untimely demise, the part has had to be recast, but Disney is turning this apparent liability into an asset by changing the casting every week to inspire repeat visits. When the film opened at the beginning of the month, it was with the awesome Samuel L. Jackson as the captain — and an inspirational powerful, hard-dancing captain he was! The second week, with Michael’s brother Tito as the captain, was a bit of a disappointment, but it was more than made up for by this week’s portrayal of EO by Walt Disney World’s own animatronic President Andrew Jackson! Believe us when we say that Old Hickory has got the moves!

Current plans are for Captain EO to continue through the summer, with final performances (starring actress Victoria Jackson) some time just before the holiday season.

Alice Opening a Disaster for Disney

Monday, March 8th, 2010

In its first weekend, Disney’s Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland raked in an estimated $210+ million worldwide, causing an uproar in Disney’s corporate offices.

“It’s an unmitigated disaster,” said Penny Pinscher, Disney’s marketing department’s Chairman of Deniable Quotations. “Profits like these for a first weekend are almost unprecedented, and the ramifications are so terrible and widespread that it’s hard to know where to begin. First and foremost, it’s an embarrassment for the Walt Disney Company as a whole. If the film isn’t stopped — and quickly — it might end up lingering at the box office like Avatar, which, in case you haven’t noticed, has been hanging around the box-office top 10 like a creepy old uncle who doesn’t know when to leave. I mean, the thing came out months ago and it’s still in theaters? Who wants that? We’re going to put the DVD release of Alice into high gear and, hopefully, cut its theatrical run short before it becomes any more humiliating.”

Part of the problem with the film’s success is that it gives even more power to Alice’s star, Johnny Depp. Said Percy Filmpackager, Disney’s motion picture department’s Director of Baseless Information, “We’ve about had it with Depp around here. Already he’s pressured us into making a fourth — that’s right a fourth — Pirates of the Caribbean movie, and frankly we’ve been ready to move on to other things since #2. Now we’re getting word that he has set his sights on playing the title character in a remake of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang which is problematic because we hadn’t planned on remaking that film, don’t own the property, and had already offered the part of the Child Catcher to up-and-coming entertainer Johnny Weir, and that’s a whole other kettle of fish because the original Child Catcher was played by Robert Helpmann who played the Mad Hatter in an Australian version of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, which sort of brings the whole thing full circle, so you can see what a problem it is.”

“And don’t get me started on Tim Burton,” Filmpackager continues. “We’re fine with his plans for a live-action remake of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, which, as I understand it, will be much darker, in keeping with the original books — imagine the 100 Acre Woods being more like the forest Snow White runs through before she finds the dwarfs’ cottage, and you get the idea. But now that Alice is such a hit he has ‘suggested’ that Disneyland should do an overlay of its Alice attraction to make it like the new film. This would just involve making the red queen’s head bigger, aging Alice a bit, and putting a few severed heads here and there, so it’s not a big deal and we’re going to go ahead and do it, but really, it’s the principle of the thing. Who does the guy think he is? Pixar?”

Stay tuned to the DisneyLies.com for more on this disaster as news develops.

DisneyLies Official Best & Worst: Disney’s Animated Features

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Best

  • Sleeping Bambi
  • Alice in Fantasia
  • Victory Through Dumbo Power
  • The Nightmare Before Ratatouille

Worst

  • One Hundred and One Aristocats
  • Oliver & the Fox and the Hound & Company
  • The Little Mermaid Down Under
  • Tarzan of Notre Dame
  • The Emperor’s New Black Cauldron

DisneyLies Official Best & Worst: Disney’s Live-Action Films

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

Best

  • Escape to Which Mountain?
  • Treasure Island at the Top of the World
  • The Absent-Minded Rocketeer
  • The Mary Poppins Diaries
  • Bedknobs and Boomsticks (1997 remake with Bruce Campbell)

Worst

  • That Darn Cat Stevens!
  • TRON 2: Electric Boogaloo
  • The Strongest Smell in the World
  • Condormanslayer
  • The Living Dessert
  • Herbie, I Shrunk the Newsies

Special award: Double Worst

  • The Muppet Diary of Anne Frank

DisneyLies Official Best & Worst: Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Best

  • Maharaja Jungle Trek: We particularly enjoy seeing squeamish guests freak when they are “attacked” by live bats.
  • Expedition Everest: They moved this mountain to Florida all the way from Disneyland, yeti and all!
  • Pangani Forest Exploration Trail: Don’t miss feeding time in the piranha pool.

Worst

  • Rafiki’s Plant Watch: Only “Rafiki’s paint watch” could be more boring.
  • It’s Tough to Bug a Bee: This 3D film about honey production has inspired many ignorant children to try and crack open a bee hive.
  • Tarzan’s Rocks!: An uninspired educational geology display, now (thankfully) closed.