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While the film wasn't a total dud a la "Treasure Planet," it's certainly
"Little Mermaid," or even "Emperor's New Groove," which I consider the
of the latest crop of cartoons for its hip sensibility. "Home on the
suffers from an unoriginal and unfunny script, although it is not
poor or Saturday-morning-cartoon simple. To begin, there is an
overabundance of plastic-playset ready characters (literally a whole farm
full): the trio of bounty-hunting heifers played by Roseanne Barr, Judi
Dench, and Jennifer Tilly; the yodeling cattle rustler Alameda Slim (Randy
Quaid) and his three bumbling nephews; the wannabe-hero steed Buck (Cuba
Gooding Jr-- who ok'ed that name?); two lascivious bulls; a buffalo
a peg-legged jackrabbit; and a whole farmyard of pigs, chickens, a goose,
and a surly goat. Oh, and Steve Buscemi shows up too, as a caricature of
himself in a purple suit and a pencil moustache. Estelle Harris and
Warburton (so memorable in "Toy Story 2" and "Groove," respectively), had
brief cameos as well. There's no time for any kind of character
(not even with a sacred Disney "I Want" song), and the thinnest of
has the cows hunting for Slim in time to get the reward money to save
farm. I was surprised not by the simplicity but by the unnecessary,
bawdiness of the script (the movie opens with a shot of the Barr cow's
udders, with her voiceover dryly remarking "Yep, they're real. Quit
staring." Crossdressing, pee, and fat man jokes follow.) Alan Menken
a few snappy but unmemorable tunes (none of which are sung by the
characters, but by the likes of Bonnie Raitt and k.d. lang) and a
The film redeems itself in its art direction, which bursts with Disney
and retro UPA-style angularity. Especially in the opening scenes, a
multiplane effect is used to further flatten, rather than deepen, this
storybook world. It's an interesting and visually engaging concept that
works well for the story. Backgrounds are intricately detailed with
drybrush effects that call to mind "Sleeping Beauty;" if that film's art
director, Eyvind Earle, had been called upon to paint the rocks and buttes
of the American desert, it would have looked very much like this. It's
quite stunning, actually, and the best art direction since 1996's "The
Hunchback of Notre Dame."
I especially appreciated a background detail in the town scene: one of
buildings was actually only a facade, held up by supports like on a
Western set. Similarly, sooner or later, not just critics but parents too
will demand the Disney animated features to show that they have something
behind that venerable name. "Home on the Range" will tide us over for
but a renaissance of Disney is getting to be overdue. The Disney animation
department (what's left of it), like it or not, needs to take a cue from
Pixar and strive for family-friendly originality if they hope to maintain
the integrity of the brand. ***
where did it all go because it certainly wasn't spent on the animation.
It was just your regular Saturday morning cartoon animation. I guess
most of the money must have been spent on the stars who played the
voices. Since Rosanne's been out of work lately, she probably asked for
a pretty penny to do this.
It didn't have any fun songs that stand out in my mind. Plus, the plot was very generic. And it needed more animals. The main animals were cows, a rabbit, and a horse. There's also a goat, pigs, buffalo, and chickens, but they weren't shown a lot. One of the reasons people liked the story of Finding Nemo so much was all the different animals used to tell the story.
FINAL VERDICT: I guess 5 year olds will like it, but I didn't think it was too great.
It has been nearly five years since the release of this recent
traditionally animated Disney flick, made in a CGI-dominated time, and
I definitely didn't even hear about it at the time of its release. It
clearly didn't turn out to be a box office smash, which is probably why
I never heard about it (unlike "The Incredibles", the hugely successful
CGI-animated feature released the same year), and I don't think I knew
about it until I saw it mentioned in a book about animated films a
couple years ago. After seeing "Home on the Range", I can definitely
see why it tanked.
In the old west, Maggie, Mrs. Calloway, and Grace are three cows, all with very different traits, who live on a dairy farm in Nebraska called Patch of Heaven, owned by an elderly widow named Pearl Gesner. Pearl owes a lot of money, which she unfortunately can't pay, so it appears she will soon lose her farm, and it will be auctioned off! So, the three cows decide to set out to try and save their home. They must track down an outlaw, a cattle rustler named Alameda Slim, who uses a false identity to claim many properties in the state, and hypnotizes cows with his yodeling! On their adventure, they meet others on the same mission, to try and stop Alameda Slim, and due to the different traits of the three cows, they don't always get along, with conflict between Maggie and Mrs. Calloway, which obviously won't make it easier!
Others have already mentioned the lacklustre plot of this film, and I'm going to have to agree wholeheartedly. The plot pretty much completely failed to interest me, since it's very simple and forgettable, and the real lack of humour doesn't help. I only rarely found amusing moments, and kept a straight face for almost the entire thing. For example, there's some weak slapstick, which may appeal to kids, but probably not many others. I found that the funniest parts involved Alameda Slim's dimwitted nephews, parts such as them not being able to recognise their uncle after they've seen him put his simple disguise on, but they are very minor characters. Not only is the plot forgettable, so are the gags and most of the characters. Basically, the film was put together fairly simply, and probably could have been more focused. I found myself indifferent to pretty much everything about it, and I'm sure I'm not alone.
It looks like this film marked the end of a very long era, the era of traditionally animated theatrical Disney movies, which began in 1937 with "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" and went on with the company long after Walt Disney's death in 1966. Through those decades, so many classics were made in the franchise, so it's unfortunate that they couldn't finish with a much more noteworthy picture. Instead, they finished with a dull one, one which is probably much more appealing to kids than adults, unlike probably most of them, which can be fun for all ages. "Home on the Range" reminds me a lot of "Rock-A-Doodle", a 1991 animated film from Don Bluth, and not one of his more popular efforts. Both are lacklustre animated films with anthropomorphic animals, ones which are basically for the kids, and I've personally found to be very unmemorable.
I really took a chance when I bought the DVD of "Home On The Range"
because I had not seen it. It is not my normal practice to buy
something that I am totally unfamiliar with. However, I was happily
surprised. This movie was wonderful! My kids and I thoroughly enjoyed
Roseanne provided a funny voice to one of the cows. Love her or hate her, the casting was perfect, like Ellen DeGeneres was for "Finding Nemo".
I read here on IMDb that "Home On The Range" is the last Disney film to be done with traditional animation. Maybe there are faster or cheaper ways of making these movies, but a great history is coming to an end. Kind of sad I recommend this movie. While it may not be a masterpiece, it is a delight that is better than most Don Bluth or Dreamworks films.
I would give it *** out of four. Fun and funny stuff!
I'm typing this as the movie is playing on DVD. And the kids seem to
like watching it. But then, they're young and animation appeals in
Still, we try to watch with them... and I happen to love animation myself, having some background in cartoon-drawing. Everything Pixar? Fantastic. Old Disney? Sure, serve it up. Along with the Looney Tunes, old Tom & Jerry, etc.
This, though, is a sleepwalk of a feature in so many ways. Not in the animation, which isn't bad (though not much special, in context of what's out there). Nor in the music, which is decent enough.
The writing, however, is horrible. I can't imagine anyone characterizing this dialogue as "funny"... it's an endless stream of clichés. And the story line, while thin at the core, is unnecessarily complicated at the fringes. The twists don't feel like twists. They feel like fumbling shortcuts used to navigate a nest of tangled details.
I find myself astounded at how (a) such a venerable studio as Disney gets behind this kind of project (b) how they manage to attract so much high-profile voice talent and (c) how those actors stomach saying these lines, given that every one of them has acted in much better stuff than this pap. I guess a paycheck helps.
But still, ultimately this is a movie that shouldn't have been made.
P.S. One other thing... one can't help but feel like this is one of those animation movies meant to appeal to a demographic. Like, say, the vast swath of middle America that loves country music. It's worth noting that the other failed animated movies of recent years have all attempted to do the same kind of feel-good, blatant targeting.
Brother Bear... Fox and the Hound 2... there are others I can't think of at the moment. Why does it fail? First, because the movies by nature end up offering stereotypes of the demographic they're targeting. Second, because they end up being style over substance. The plot is just a vehicle to deliver the caricature. And last, because it's ridiculous to assume that great story lines don't transcend the cultural distinctions.
Do the studio marketers really think, for instance, that the Nascar set and Manhattan kids alike can't "get" Monsters Inc or Toy Story on a shared level? The only movie of recent years that seemed to beat that rap was "Cars." And that was because it was a good story, not stuck in being pedantic or playing to any one crowd.
I don't see just why it is that people don't like this film. It has good music, good animation, and funny dialogue, but it is fairly sappy. I thought that it was fairly good, even though the plot is just a wee bit weak. Fortunately, the plot is peppered with many humorous events and turns which clear any and all flaws up. The plot is that of a small farm out in the Old West, which is set to be foreclosed. All seems lost until two cows who live there, and one who just moved in, decide to do the only thing that can be done to save their home, catch a notorious criminal, who is known for stealing cows. With some massively amusing high-jinks and many plot twists, this film, while redundant at times, is not to be missed. Take it from someone who knows animation, this movie, while having received a multitude of bad comments and scorns is good, but watch it yourself and YOU be the judge. YOU must decide whether or not it is good, but I found it enjoyable.
The 44th animated Disney "classic" is just one among other good
examples of how Disney went downhill during these last years.
It's sad to see how Disney (which made so many timeless classics) declined that much. What happened to the traditional hand-drawn classics? All this CGI stuff only ruined Disney! "Home On The Range" isn't the worst Disney movie ever, but it is side by side with their worst movies.
This movie has lots of irritating moments, but the worst of all is a scene in a bar - one of the most ridiculous scenes in a movie! The "humor" of this movie isn't the classic humor which is really funny. What we see here is nothing but annoying, unconventional and pointless modern humor.
This movie has some nice backgrounds of the Old West, but only a few. The characters are very ugly in general and so terribly designed that it's impossible not to feel annoyed by them.
Stupid situations, terrible designs, very low picture quality, awful animation and boring songs are more weak points of this disgrace.
The characters in general are annoying. The only characters I liked were the little yellow birds, the little pigs and Rusty the Dog. But even these characters can't be compared with the beloved and legendary Disney characters of the great classics from the past.
This is the most dispiriting Disney release since the dark days of the
Cauldron. The laughs were strained and ill-timed. While the string of
quality Disney movies carefully crafted humor aimed at adults as well as
children, this one relied almost exclusively on belch jokes and
inappropriate (not to mention inane) sexual innuendo. Seemingly undecided
whether it was to be Emperor's-New-Groove-goes-country or
South-Park-in-the-West, it miserably fails its audience both young and
While Judi Dench and Jennifer Tilly struggle in vain to carry the film with some attention to character, it never ceases to amaze that Roseanne -- purportedly a former stand-up comic -- has such leaden delivery and a complete lack of comic timing. Obviously, unless she is bellowing at another character, there is simply no way that her talented co-stars can create any rapport. From her first words on screen, Roseanne sinks this movie like a stone.
A total waste of some talented co-stars.
Please, please, let this be the final death rattle of the Eisner era. It is bad enough that Michael Eisner has ruined practically every character through badly-thought-out and badly-realized straight-to-video sequels, but to completely destroy the bedrock of the Disney empire -- animated theatrical releases -- is unforgiveable.
This one only gets a 2 out of 10.
This was an awful DISSED KNEE animated film that is just about as bad
as the holiday 03 nightmare "THESE HUNTED MOOSEMEN."
It's about a bunch of evil cowboys who want a bunch of cattle gone and slaughtered and destroying their home while at it!!!!! This should've never been the movie for last 2D entertainment!!!!! As usual the DEADNECK company filled this movie with their current motifs: bad humor, bad story, dull moments, violence, disrespect, high school, cheerleaders, dating, relationships, kissing, more dates, more cheerleaders, more violence, more badness, etc.
I wanna give this movie that tries to be cute, "CONDO IN MY FRIDGE," a 1 out of 10. It was boring and sull and not good for my tastes; whoever decided to turn this company upside down should be banned from all Disney parks within 1000 feet!!!!! Give me a break about constant Disney PG movies; that's old news!!!!!
The story line is too thin, the dialog is boring and there are no jokes
or great moments in it. I never laughed once. The target audience must
be lower than 8 years old, this is a baby-sitter with no character.
It's even worse than Chicken Little, and it doesn't even try to be
funny. Normally, it would be an enjoyable animation, but coming from
Disney Studios, I'd say this is very disappointing.
If I have to be positive, I can say that my eyes didn't start bleeding. Judy Dench saved the day. She earns this movie 2 points / 10. It's difficult to find 10 lines to say about this movie even if they're all negative.
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