1914: Milo Thatch, grandson of the great Thaddeus Thatch works in the boiler room of a museum. He knows that Atlantis was real, and he can get there if he has the mysterious Shephards journal, which can guide him to Atlantis. But he needs someone to fund a voyage. His employer thinks he's dotty, and refuses to fund any crazy idea. He returns home to his apartment and finds a woman there. She takes him to Preston B. Whitmore, an old friend of his Grandfathers. He gives him the shepherds journal, a submarine and a 5 star crew. They travel through the Atlantic ocean, face a large lobster called the Leviathan, and finally get to Atlantis. But does the Atlantis crew have a lust for discovery, or something else? Written by
Just before the launch of the ship, Cookie complains about having to carry non-essentials on the trip. One of the non-essentials he mentions is "cilantro", however, in 1914 this seasoning would have been referred to as "coriander leaves". See more »
On Screen Text:
[the text that appears on screen]
"... in a single day and night of misfortune, the island of Atlantis disappeared into the depths of the sea." - Plato, 360 B.C.
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Here's what I knew about "Atlantis" before watching it:
* - It's officially Disney's first animated sci-fi adventure. I'm not sure how accurate that is (I like to nitpick) but it made me curious first time I heard it described.
* - The preview looked, for the most part, damn cool. Evidently, it was also "too cryptic" according to some critics after the fact.
* - It apparently did SO badly that Disney said, "Screw it, let's re-release 'Spy Kids'".
So, with all that said, how is the movie?
I'm a sucker for animated fantasy that involves stirring music and rampant special effects anyway, but "Atlantis" goes all out. It's a throwback to all the CGI eye-candy shots in "Beauty and the Beast" and "Aladdin", so much so that it's almost an effects animator's Best-Of Show. The characters maybe aren't that memorable (except, perhaps, for the ship's medical officer), and the plot's a little dull, but this isn't a movie you watch for the plot.
Here's a controversy that bothers me. The "failure" (as in, it "only" took in, like, five-hundred-million or something; I know animators who'd kill to see fifteen bucks of that) of this movie compared to the popularity of "Shrek" and "Monsters Inc." has been seen as evidence of the death of traditional animation. I don't think that's true. How do you account for the "South Park" movie? What about "Final Fantasy"? Really, the story and the artistry is everything, not the method. I don't know what Disney's comeback movie will be like, but I don't think they're out of the picture yet.
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