Unfortunately, Disney also has a notoriety for blatantly plagiarizing from eastern works, and "Atlantis" is no exception. It's easy enough finding comparisons out there without the aid of a well-learned fan, so it should suffice to say that the creators of this movie probably spent a couple weeks watching anime and playing RPGs, and then took all the ideas they must have thought looked cool and applied them to this movie without understanding the principles that made them work in the first place.
The primary story is simple enough: Milo Thatch, a bookworm who aspires to discover the city of Atlantis, heads out on his search after being handed a journal with vital clues in regards to the lost city's whereabouts. Along the way he befriends any crew member he can find who is not an Anglo-Saxon American, and falls madly in love with the Atlantean princess once he reaches the city. After a day's stay, the crew commander, along with his storm troopers (all as non-descript as the 30-some-odd white crew members whom Milo never befriended), busts out some heavy-fire artillery and proceeds to steal the Atlanteans' primary life-source, his sole purpose being a meager profit and a place in the history books.
The political undertones of "Atlantis" remind me of a Japanese RPG by the name of "Xenogears." Just as from the work that inspired it, it featured innumerable religious references that were so preposterously out of place that you couldn't help but laugh whenever the narrative made a religious comment, for it seemed as though the writer had simply opened up to a random page of the Bible for inspiration whenever he was stuck. Though "Atlantis" contains very few religious references, the political ones appear to fit this vein; you'd be hard-pressed to find a more inappropriate format for a writer to express his other-worldly understanding of the problems that plague society.
If this were the only problem with "Atlantis," it'd be a forgivable trait that probably wouldn't hinder the overall presentation. But since Disney decided to take a more adventurous approach that includes more action than comedy, the movie also fails in a narrative sense. Everything, from Milo's inspiration, to the journey to Atlantis, to the discovery of its culture, is handled with such breakneck speed that it's impossible to associate with either the characters or the situations.
Obviously, you're going to have to retain a young child's interest when it comes to this type of movie, so a quick narrative is an almost unavoidable device. But it's not acceptable to include every social stereotype that a child has grown up with in this country as a substitute for characterization. Ignoring the fact that it's historically inaccurate considering the time period that the story transpires in to begin with, the stereotypes that are presented are a bad enough influence to be considered "politically incorrect."
The paradoxical, or even hypocritical nature of this movie will no doubt sail over the target audience's head. So I'm certainly going to sleep soundly knowing that the leading child's entertainment company is continuing the American government's plot to brainwash its populace into becoming blubbering idiots. If you like to live in a bucket, it's perfectly fine by me.
The only thing bothering me is this: what the hell is Mole? Knowing the profoundly insightful messages that are to be found in "Atlantis," it's possibly something much more idiotic than a commentary on the French's hygiene habits.