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The Disney Middle AgesThe Sword in the Stone: American Translatio and Disney’s Antimedievalism

The Disney Middle Ages: The Sword in the Stone: American Translatio and Disney’s Antimedievalism [Neither Walt Disney nor his chief animators were particularly interested in making The Sword in the Stone. Initial reviews were lukewarm, its performance at the box office was lackluster, and most critics, yesterday and today, are dismissive of the film. Keith Booker calls it “one of the most obscure in the Disney animated canon”;1 Alan Lupack and Barbara Tepa Lupack see it as consisting of a “predictable pattern of chases and transformations”;2 Jerome Reel terms the film’s score as “workmanlike”;3 and Jerry Beck describes it as “one of Disney’s most forgettable features, a mild entertainment that bears little relation to the studio’s classic era.”4 As an adaptation of T. H. White’s 1938 novel of the same title, discussion has been limited: Raymond Thompson states that the film “borrows little from the book beyond the basic situation of the young Arthur, or Wart as he is known, learning valuable lessons about life while magically transformed into various creatures by his tutor, Merlin the Magician,”5 and Alice Grellner comments on how the film downplays or simply eliminates much of the novel’s “multifaceted, ambivalent, misogynistic, often contradictory, and darkly pessimistic view of human nature.”6] http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png

The Disney Middle AgesThe Sword in the Stone: American Translatio and Disney’s Antimedievalism

Part of the The New Middle Ages Book Series
Editors: Pugh, Tison; Aronstein, Susan
The Disney Middle Ages — Nov 10, 2015

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References (11)

Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan US
Copyright
© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Nature America Inc. 2012
ISBN
978-1-349-34266-2
Pages
115 –131
DOI
10.1057/9781137066923_7
Publisher site
See Chapter on Publisher Site

Abstract

[Neither Walt Disney nor his chief animators were particularly interested in making The Sword in the Stone. Initial reviews were lukewarm, its performance at the box office was lackluster, and most critics, yesterday and today, are dismissive of the film. Keith Booker calls it “one of the most obscure in the Disney animated canon”;1 Alan Lupack and Barbara Tepa Lupack see it as consisting of a “predictable pattern of chases and transformations”;2 Jerome Reel terms the film’s score as “workmanlike”;3 and Jerry Beck describes it as “one of Disney’s most forgettable features, a mild entertainment that bears little relation to the studio’s classic era.”4 As an adaptation of T. H. White’s 1938 novel of the same title, discussion has been limited: Raymond Thompson states that the film “borrows little from the book beyond the basic situation of the young Arthur, or Wart as he is known, learning valuable lessons about life while magically transformed into various creatures by his tutor, Merlin the Magician,”5 and Alice Grellner comments on how the film downplays or simply eliminates much of the novel’s “multifaceted, ambivalent, misogynistic, often contradictory, and darkly pessimistic view of human nature.”6]

Published: Nov 10, 2015

Keywords: Brown Lemming; Medieval Literature; Animate Movie; Traditional Story; Disney Film

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