Mr. Gepetto looks at his creation Pinocchio the wooden puppet. PHOTO COURTESY OF DISNEY MEDIA KIT

Kaitlyn Leister
Staff Writer

Disney has done it again. Another classic animation film has been reimagined into a live action adaptation. 

Though, before sitting down and watching this unexpected new Disney film, the internet had already been ablaze, with many not liking the film.

After finally taking the time to watch the film, it can be said that there are some aspects of the movie that made it not as enjoyable as the original cartoon from 1940.

The animated story follows the same pattern of a puppet being brought to life by a wish, and goes through an adventure to becoming a real boy. Along the way, he gets sold to a traveling puppet master, taken onto an island where children are turned into donkeys, and then has to find his father after he sailed off to find the puppet boy. They get eaten by a large whale, and smoke themselves out and get onto land. Pinnochio then proves himself, becomes a real boy, and the movie ends on a happy note. Though the live-action follows the same plot points, there are a few changes, as well as added characters, that changed the movie from the original. 

First, just the pacing and timing of the movie made it seem to drag on, just waiting to see when the next plot point was going to occur. The live-action adaptation is longer than the animated feature, and with that added time it does feel more like the movie is dragging on and not getting to the next major memorable scene or song. 

The graphics also clashed with the cartoon approach to the famous wooden doll Pinocchio and the more realistic approach to the animals. While, yes, they could have tried going realistic on the puppet design, which could have turned into another beta design of Sonic from that movie franchise. So, staying close to the original’s design and style was a better option. Though with this, the animals were mostly anthropomorphic, with a few still being like regular animals (Monstro the whale turned into a whaleish sea monster as well) with the realistic style and a cartoon main character just seemed to create a great contrast with a scene of Pinocchio next to one of the animal creatures. Though the scene of the donkey transformation does haunt many like the original did.

Though even with this, the new character added of a puppeteer under the puppet master Stromboli named Fabiana with her puppet Sabina did add a nice touch. I loved her backstory of her dreaming of being a dancer, but wearing a brace and now having her puppet dance for her, as well as helping Pinocchio escape Stromboli. There was also the Seagull Sophia that was added, which serves as a small helper to Jiminy Cricket and finding Gepetto on the boat. 

It must also be said that the scene with the Blue Fairy was beautiful, especially her version of “When You Wish Upon A Star”. The design was well done, and a huge shout out to the Actress Cynthia Erivo on her excellent portrayal of the character. As well as a shout out to  Tom Hanks in his role as the father and woodcarver Gepetto.

Overall, this retelling of the beloved puppet wanting to be a real boy was alright, though will never hold up to the same expectations and enjoyment as the original animated film. Still though, a lot of hard work was put into it, and the next generation has a new Pinocchio story to enjoy.