In New England in the early 20th century, Pete is a nine-year-old orphan escaping from his brutal adoptive parents, the Gogans, with his only friend, a cartoon dragon named Elliott. They successfully escape to Passamaquoddy, Maine, and live with Nora, a lighthouse keeper, and her father, Lampie. Elliott is sought for medicinal purposes by the corrupt Dr. Terminus.Written by
Matthew Anscher <email@example.com>
His name is Elliott. He's 20 feet high, 40 feet long. He can become invisible at the drop of a hat, or spew red hot flames. In fact, there's only one way to bring this awesome beast under control... rub his tummy. See more »
Originally, Elliott the dragon was not to be seen at all in the film and remain invisible throughout. However, members of the studio animation department gradually lobbied studio heads to increase the amount of visible screen time. At first it was decided he would be only seen at the end of the film, but ultimately the character's screen time was increased to 22 minutes. See more »
Every time someone enters Elliot's cave, you see the same scene of waves in the background with the same color sky. Even when Nora looks out from the lighthouse it looks black, but then from Elliot's cave which is just down the beach, it's light blue. See more »
This Disney film has a troubled history as far as the many different versions released over the years. It originally ran 134 minutes. After its premiere engagement in Hollywood, it was cut down to 121 minutes before it premiered in New York. When it was released in Europe, it ran 105 minutes, with the following edits: -"Candle on the Water" (which survived only as an instrumental passage over the credits replacing the original overture) and "The Happiest Home in These Hills" were eliminated entirely. -Verses from "I Saw A Dragon," "Passamashloddy," "There's Room For Everyone," and "Every Little Piece" were cut. -21 scenes were shortened. This version was used for the original home video release in 1980, while every video since then has run 128 minutes, restoring the songs and the majority of dramatic material. However, when Disney re-released it in theaters, it was the European cut. Even further cuts were made for the TV version of the film, which premiered on "The Disney Sunday Movie" in 1986. See more »
With the release of the newly updated version out this past Friday, I wanted to write about the original Disney masterpiece, Petes Dragon. It was a great memory as a child, watching this magical film and singing the songs. I realize that not everyone is a fan of musicals or Disney films in general, but this was one of the last true musicals, up there with Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Mary Poppins.
I like the original, it has depth and feeling. Remakes just make me feel like I'm paying for a story I already know. Some remakes can be good, but the original Petes Dragon isn't even that old of a film. And I know Disney has a history of remaking a lot of their own films, but Petes Dragon? It's a classic.
This film has so many memorable moments, from the characters to the sets to the music. Mickey Rooney as Lampie was great, probably his most remembered role ever. And Helen Reddy as Nora was excellent, and her song Candle on the Water is beautiful. And Doc Terminus, played by Jim Dale was hilarious and charming. He is a real treat to watch in any Disney film.
If you love Disney films, watch the classic and give it credit where it's due.
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