Sunday, June 26, 2011

Atlantis The Lost Empire (2001)

This is one that slipped by me desptite the fact that I have several of the action figures made as part of the merchandising of the film. The figures are very high quality as is this underappreciated animated feature from Disney Studios.

The themes of 'Atlantis - The Lost Empire' are tried and true Disney - 'adventure capitalism' vs dying culture with magical lifeforce. It's scriptwriting by committee to capture whatever the focus groups say will create the next blockbuster. Aside from the forementioned action figures, there was also a toy promotion at McDonald's.

The computer redered animation tried to incorporate visual technology that is able to render cutting edge imagery alongside tradition 2D animation. The effect is not as jaring as you would assume despite the fact that you can see just how far computer animation has come in a decade.

There is a scene very early in the movie where Milo first meets with his benefactor, Harcourt. On the table in front of them are models of all the cool steampunk influenced vehicles - submarine, balloon, escape fighters, tunnelling machine - and each make an appearance throughout the film.

The real highlight here is the vocal acting from such actors as Michael J. Fox, Leonard Nemoy, James Garner (spectacular), and Jim Varney. It's a weird mix but again, it works.

6/10 - It kept me waching but it was nothing I hadn't seen many times before.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

I always liked Jim Varney.

M. D. Jackson said...

I kind of liked this film. It had a very "Edgar Rice Burroughs" "steampunk" vibe that appealed to me at the time (I saw it in the theaters) I don't know how it would stand up to a second viewing.