(The Disneycember logo is shown followed by a picture of Walt Disney and images of films released after his death. This is followed up by various scenes of "The Black Cauldron".)
Doug (vo): After Disney's death, the studio didn't have the stream of big hits that it used to. I mean, it had a big hit every once in a while, but, for the most part, it never quite hit the Snow White standards. And on top of that, the films were just taking longer, and longer, and longer to make. So, if the film didn't really wow audiences, people sort of felt they got gipped. And the film that many Disney fans call the crowning achievement of failure is The Black Cauldron. How bad is it? Well for a movie that had a ton of money put into both the animation and the advertising, it failed to please audiences and critics alike, proving to be a gigantic financial failure. This film did so bad that on it's opening weekend, it lost to The Care Bears Movie. You heard right. A Disney film lost to The Care Bears Movie. It was considered the lowest point in Disney history. So, wow, this film must be really, really bad, right? Well, yeah. Despite the fact that it's starting to grow sort of a cult following, it really doesn't hold up that well, at least for my taste.
Story and review
Doug (vo): What's the story? Well, it's about this teenage boy who wants to be a hero. The only problem is, he's much more talk and much less do. And when I say talk, I mean, really talk. I mean, this kid doesn't shut up.
Taran: Dallben doesn't understand. I'm not a little boy anymore. I should be doing heroic deeds, for Prydain! Is this to be my life? Pampering a pig?! I'm a warrior!
Doug (vo): And I know what they're trying to do; they're trying to make it look like he's full of himself, but an innocent, and then, when he enters the real world, he's gonna discover things about himself, blah-blah-blah-blah-blah. But I'm sorry, his voice is annoying. And on top of that, his ego is annoying. He barely does anything in this movie!
Taran: Thank you, thank you, thank you all. But, without the help of my pig Hen Wen here, I...
Doug (vo): He just praises himself and, God, I wanna smack him! Well, anyway, he's looking after this pig named Hen Wen, who has this very distinct power that whenever you put her head in a puddle of water, she can see the future. Isn't that...weird? Well, apparently, there's this evil demon known as the Horned King, and he wants possession of the pig so he can take her and look into the future to see if she can lead him to the Black Cauldron. What's the Black Cauldron? Apparently, it's a device that can bring people back from the dead and create an invincible army. Along the way, he comes across a princess. (Sarcastically) Yeah, imagine, a princess in a Disney film. (normal) And I know I go on and on about princess rants, but really, there is absolutely no point to having her be a princess in this movie. Even by Disney standards, she doesn't do anything princess-y, she doesn't wear fancy dresses, she doesn't give orders, she doesn't...I don't know, sing. We don't even see her kingdom, we don't even see her castle, we don't see anything that Disney loves to market when it comes to princesses! All she's got going for her is the name, so, really, there is no reason for it. There's also this really annoying comic relief that's sort of like a mix between oatmeal and a hairball. Yeah, you thought Jar Jar Binks' voice was annoying? Get a load of this.
Gurgi: Oh, poor miserable Gurgi deserves fierce smackings and wackings on his poor tender head!
Doug (vo): Yeah, between these two character's voices, I want to strangle this film. Even the music by the great Elmer Bernstein, all I hear throughout the entire thing is Ghostbusters! Listen!
(Some of the musical score plays and, yeah, it does sound exactly like Ghostbusters)
Doug (vo): Tell me that doesn't sound like the Zuul theme.
Doug (vo): Okay, so for all my bitching and moaning, is this really one of the worst Disney films of all time? Well, I don't know if I can go that far. I mean, it is annoying. But there is some creativity to the animation, well, not much. And as frustrating as it can get, it never gets to a point where it says anything bad, I mean, I can't think of any bad messages or morals or anything. It's just sort of bland and forgettable, like a lot of the Disney films that were coming out at that time. It's not the worst, but it's definitely one of the lower ones. But like I said, the film's really starting to grow in fans and I find more and more people actually sort of have this secret like for it. So, maybe there is something there that can grab a certain group of people. But, it certainly didn't grab me and it certainly didn't grab a lot of audiences at the time. Black Cauldron is often called one of Disney's biggest failures. I think it's just kind of a bad movie. Not the worst, but I'd probably skip it.
[The ending scene, showing the main characters walking along in victory, is shown]