(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips from Winnie the Pooh. Snippets of the film's score by Henry Jackman play in the background throughout)
Doug (vo): And now we come to the last animated film in Disneycember: Winnie the Pooh. Wait, didn’t we already do Winnie the Pooh? Oh, wait, no, that was The Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. This is just Winnie the Pooh. Like, what? This is his biography or something, or is it a reboot, like, a re-telling of the original movie? No. They’re new stories. I guess it’s just sort of continuing it, but why don’t they call it "More Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" or "The Continuing Adventures of Winnie the Pooh", or give it a different title like they did the other Winnie the Pooh movies? I...I don’t know. It’s here, let’s review it. All your favorite characters are back, including Winnie, Piglet, Owl, Tigger, the whole bunch. And much like the original film, it doesn’t seem like there’s one coherent story throughout the whole thing. Well, kind of, sort of, not really, yes, I don’t know. Okay, let me explain.
Doug (vo): Pooh is looking for honey, big shock, and in the meantime, he finds out that Eeyore has lost his tail. Pooh tells everybody about it, and so, everybody tries to get a replacement tail for him, but none of them really seem to work. So, they sort of leave that story for a bit and they go on to another story. Pooh tries to approach Christopher Robin, but he misreads a note and thinks that he’s been kidnapped by a monster called the Backson. I won’t dare tell you as how they came to this conclusion because, to be very honest, it’s very, very funny. So most of the movie is trying to figure out how to capture this monster called the Backson, and that’s really about it.
Doug (vo): Those are the only two stories in this movie. I mean, it’s done well, I guess, but why did we spent so much time on just those two stories? The original had, like, a ton of stories, and that was awesome. Heck, even if you wanted to keep it to just one story, that’d be fine, too. But these seem very split apart, and even the way the movie is told, it seems like it’s trying to recreate what the first film was doing. You know, a lot of fourth wall jokes with the narrator, and just sort of taking time to let the characters talk and breathe and just have moments. But what made that one work is that it had a lot of stories. This one only has two. That’s very odd. When the film ended, I was shocked. I was like, "Really? That’s it? Where’s the rest of it? There’s gotta be more stories you can tell than that." But, to be fair, they’re told pretty well. As I said before, the film does recreate sort of that feel that the first movie did, though, just like I said, too few stories. But it still has a pretty good atmosphere and pace to it.
[Several of the film's characters are shown]
Doug (vo): John Cleese is the narrator and he’s absolutely perfect. He’s both dignified, but can also sort of give that sense of humor that the original narrator had, too. That’s Craig Ferguson as the Owl and he’s a little different from the original character. He’s a little bit more obsessed, a little bit more full of himself. I mean, the original Owl was kind of egotistical, too, but this one seems obsessed with being right, which I guess works okay, but I don’t know. Wasn’t Rabbit already sort of that character? Wasn’t he kind of the stick in the mud or whatever? I don’t know. It works okay.
[One of the film's song sequences, "Everything is Honey", is shown]
Doug (vo): The songs...are really frigging good songs. I guess it was done by the same people who did Avenue Q and Book of Mormon [Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez]. In fact, one of the writers is actually the voice of Kanga. That’s pretty cool. They’re so good that I actually thought maybe it was the Sherman Brothers, I thought they came back to do the music for this movie. But, nope. It’s just the exact same spirit and the exact same talent.
[One of the songs, "The Backson Song", is shown]
Tigger: They swipe your stripes.
Piglet: They clog your pipes!
Rabbit: They dig up your garden.
Eeyore: They won't beg your pardon.
Winnie the Pooh: They eat your snacks.
Piglet: They won't relax!
Rabbit: They chip your tooth.
Kanga: They steal your youth!
Owl: And now you know the horrible truth!
All: The Backson, the Backson, we're afraid of the Backson!
[Several clips focusing on the film's animation are shown]
Doug (vo): I guess if I had to point out one other nitpick, it would be, surprisingly, the animation’s a little too good. I know, I know, I’m never satisfied, but when you look at the original Winnie the Pooh, it’s just the perfect amount, it’s good animation but still a little sketchy. Here, the backgrounds are still sketchy and they look fine, but the characters maybe just a little too clean. And on top of that, they sort of gave Christopher Robin more human-like eyes and oddly enough, I sort of liked the dot eyes, which I rarely do. But I think because everybody else has them, it sort of worked, and when you suddenly see that character that has those big Disney-like eyes, it sort of takes you out of it a bit. Well, not much. And again, it’s a nitpick, I’m just trying to look for problems.
Doug (vo): The film is good. It has a lot of funny scenes, the characters are still wonderful, and it has some great songs. The biggest problem there is, is that there are only two stories, and I still don’t get that. Why didn’t they do a ton of stories, especially when it’s called Winnie the Pooh? I mean, you can recreate this, you can have so much fun, and you only stick it to two stories? Well, to be fair, though, they’re good stories, along with good characters, good songs and everything else I’ve mentioned before. It’s not a great flick, but it’s a good one. If you’re a fan of Winnie the Pooh, especially the original, I’d say go ahead and check it out. And, folks, that was Disneycember. Thank you so much for joining me at looking over some of the most classic and memorable of Disney animated movies. I'm sure you got your own opinions on these movies, so get out there, share them, and hear what other people have to say. Thanks so much for joining me, and take care.
[The ending scene of the film, showing Pooh and Christopher Robin walking into the sunset and the book closing, is shown]