Sleeping Beauty sits near the top of this list as far as Disney park representation is concerned. Not because of the characters or story, but the castle is represented in more than one Disney park. The original castle in Disneyland was supposed to be based on Snow White, but was renamed and themed to promote Sleeping Beauty by the time the park opened in 1955. Of course the movie was remade into the Maleficent films, Disney uses Once Upon a Dream as typical Disney background track, and the fire breathing dragon makes a dramatic appearance in one of the Main Street Parades.
Sleeping beauty hit the theatres 1,317 days after Lady and the Tramp, the longest wait between films at this point. This film saw a nomination at the Academy Awards, the first time in eight years Disney had that recognition.
As far as the film itself, it was better than I remembered. My childhood memory thought of this one as one of the worst of the bunch. My adult experience is not the same.
The animation in Sleeping Beauty has a strong personality. I don’t think everyone will adore the change in style, but it gives it its own identity. The characters are very distinct and the backgrounds are beautiful. There were some scenes that got very abstract and almost felt like lost pieces of Fantasia. The music is similar where the mix of the action and music was not as subtle as some of the other films from this time. But, they sang Once Upon a Dream nearly nonstop throughout the film
The story of Sleeping Beauty is somewhat the opposite issue that Snow White or Bambi had. Instead of a lack of story they drug into a full length feature, this time they decided to attempt more story than would fit in a full length feature film.
We once again have a villain that is bad for the sake of being bad, unless not being invited to the birth announcement is the motive. We have bumbling good witches that throw away sixteen years of a plan because making a cake and dress is too hard. And, we have people fighting arranged marriage to give in to arranged marriage.
The movie makes some surface level sense, the plot holes are humonguous. But it is entertaining and a fast moving plot.
Run Time – 75 Minutes
32nd Academy Awards – 1 Nominations – 0 Wins
Best Scoring of a Musical Picture – Nominated
Disney Animated Canon so far in order of Quality
1. Lady and the Tramp 6-22-1955
2. Peter Pan 2-5-1953
3. Dumbo 10-23-1941
4. Cinderella 2-15-1950
5. Pinocchio 2-7-1940
6. Sleeping Beauty 1-29-1959
7. The Adventure of Ichabod and Mr. Toad 10-5-1949
8. Make Mine Music 4-20-1946
9. Fun and Fancy Free 9-27-1947
10. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 12-21-1937
11. Saludos Amigos 8-24-1942
12. Alice in Wonderland 7-26-1951
13. Melody Time 5-27-1948
14. Bambi 8-13-1942
15. Fantasia 11-13-1940
16. The Three Caballeros 12-21-1944