In 1977, Walt Disney Pictures released their 22nd animated feature film, “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.” Starring A. A. Milne’s lovable creation Winnie the Pooh, this movie is actually a compilation of three previous shorts: “Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree” (1966), “Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day” (1968), and “Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too” (1974). To combine the shorts into a movie, additional transitional material was added to connect the three stories. The movie was a big hit with audiences then, and it will be again, with its recent release for the first time on Blu-ray.
If you haven’t seen the movie, it is set in the Hundred-Acre Wood where Winnie the Pooh lives, along with a young boy named Christopher Robin, a wise Owl, the always-gloomy Eeyore, responsible Rabbit, easily frightened Piglet, protective Kanga and her son Roo, and the bouncy Tigger. One of the most clever aspects of the movie is the way animators presented the story itself. They make you feel as if you are actually reading a story book and kids will particularly enjoy it. The first set of stories revolves around Pooh’s love of honey, and as he isn’t the brightest character in the Hundred-Acre Wood, he gets stuck after eating too much of his favorite treat. This is followed by a blustery day and flood, and Pooh is introduced to Heffalumps. The final portion revolves around what Tigger’s do best, bouncing. Unfortunately, that bouncing lands Tigger and Roo in a tree. The movie is about as sweet and innocent as you will ever see, and as I previously mentioned, brings back so many memories when things were much more simple.
For the Blu-ray release of “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh,” there’s a new “Disney Intermission” feature that I’m sure the younger audience will enjoy. When you pause the movie, you can play along with the characters in some interactive activities which is similar to another Blu-ray exclusive, the “Pooh Play-Along.” There are 5 “Mini Advntures of Winnie the Pooh” shorts, a classic animated short “A Day for Eeyore”, and, of course, “The Winnie the Pooh Theme Song” performed by Carly Simon. My favorite Blu-ray feature is “The Story Behind the Masterpiece”, which is a 25-minute making-of featurette but “A Day for Eeyore” is fantastic as well. The additional features are really icing on the cake for this Blu-ray.
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