(US); 1942; NR; 69 Min.
Hardie Albright: Bambi
Peter Behn: Thumper
Stan Alexander: Flower
Cammie King: Faline
Produced by Walt
Disney; Directed by David Hand; Screenwritten
by Chuch Couch, Carl Fallberg, Larry Morey, Felix Salten,
Melvin Shaw, Vernon Stallings and Ralph Wright
by DAVID KEYES
do you review one of your favorite movies? I canít tell
you how many times Iíve pondered that question upon writing
this review. Thatís because itís true--"Bambi" is probably
one of the best movies ever made. And why? Simply because
it portrays real serious life issues in a movie made for
children. Not many films do this, but the standard Disney
movie like "Pinocchio" or "Beauty And The Beast" does. In
Disneyís golden age, however, he was at his best, and after
everything the studio has been through, "Bambi" remains
may sound like a constructive criticism, but itís actually,
in a way, good advice. Small children might not be able
to handle subject matter like the kind displayed here, because
it involves some more adult-oriented, pressing issues, like
the urge to hunt for animals, the urges to dominate, and
the processions of lifeís changes like puberty and hormones.
In the beginning of "Bambi," we meet the title character,
a young prince born under the observation of the king of
the forest, or more appropriately, his father. Later, in
a fateful winter storm scene, Bambiís mother is killed by
a vicious hunter, therefore leaving only his father to raise
him. At this point, heís still very young, without antlers,
supporting spots on his back.
wouldnít you know it? Next spring, he emerges a full-grown
deer, with antlers and the standard puberty-toned voice.
Also around this time, he meets up with one of his childhood
friends, named Faline, and instead of the friendship there,
itís an instant attraction. And Iím not talking about your
typical goo goo eyes and smiles. Iím talking about swing
music in the background, getting all hot and sweaty, etc.,
the things that puberty might do to us when we witness beautiful
specimens of the opposite sex.
Bambi himself isnít devoted to these characteristics during
that spring. He is more or less exposed to them by his friends
who act this way upon finding their soul mates. In this
manner, I speak of Thumper and Flower, the two cute animals
who Bambi spends his life with. Thumper, the rabbit, taught
him how to ice skate, how to talk, how to smell flowers--basically,
the things normal forest animals enjoy most. Heís called
Thumper because to alarm others, he thumps his foot rapidly
on the ground. But since "Bambi" is such a popular family
movie, I probably donít need to tell you that.
is the real winner. Heís a bashful, cute skunk who was named
so when Bambi was still beginning to talk, and the deer
mistook him for one. He used that name ever since, and its
one that perfectly fits him as well. Heís sweet, beautiful,
and grandeur in every little way. Yet his life is simple.
course, thereís more seriousness in the movie than meets
the eye. Who could dare forget those moments when the faceless,
nameless hunters accidentally start a fire that wipes out
the whole forest. Most of the characters, luckily, escape,
but not at an easy cost. Faline herself is almost killed
by a pack of ravaging dogs, and Bambi almost finds certain
death when heís shot. But with his fatherís belief in him,
Bambi does succeed.
I guess, in short, the best way to review a special movie
like "Bambi" is to say what you feel. It was one of the
first movies I was exposed to, and being such a fanatic
of this area of entertainment, it has always remained one
of my favorites. I only wish it could have showed up in
the American Film Instituteís Top 100 Movies.
1998, David Keyes, Cinemaphile.org.
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if the above review contains any spelling or grammar mistakes.