The Aristocats (1970)

aristocats poster 1970 movie
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 6/10

Some catchy songs, fun characters

Underdeveloped characters with a plot that is kind of all over the place, not my favorite art

Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Aristocats

Studio:  Walt Disney Productions

Genre(s):  Animated/Musical/Family

Release Date(s):  December 11, 1970

MPAA Rating:  G

aristocats-duchess-and-thomas-omalley-billboard

Oh, yeah…give me some sugar Duchess!!!

The Duchess and her kittens Marie, Berlioz, and Toulouse are living the good life in Paris. When Madame Adelaide Bonfamille decides to have the Duchess and her kitten inherit everything in her will, her butler Edgar decides to do away with cat and her kittens. When his plans are derailed by a pair of dogs named Napoleon and Lafayette, the Duchess and her kittens are lost in the countryside for the first time. Encountering the legendary alley cat Thomas O’Malley, the Duchess and her kittens head for home and meet help along the way from Thomas’ alley cat friends, a mouse named Roquefort, some geese named Abigail, Amelia, and Waldo, and a horse named Frou-Frou. When Edgar finds the Duchess and her kittens are back, he might have other plans for them.

aristocats-alley-cats-attack-edgar

…and freeze!!!

Directed by Wolfgang Reitherman, The Aristocats (sometimes stylistically presented as The AristoCats) is the entry in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series. Following The Jungle Book in 1967, The Aristocats was the last film approved by Walt Disney himself and had a number of the legendary “Nine Old Men” work in the film. The movie received moderate reviews but was well received by fans. It features the voice work of Phil Harris, Eva Gabor, Scatman Crothers, Sterling Holloway, Pat Buttram, and George Lindsey, and the final performance of Maurice Chevalier who sings “The Aristocats”.

aristocats-duchess-thomas-omalley-dancing

Ok…this dancing scene is just weird and frightening…

The Aristocats’ adventure-based story will entertain kids. The characters are fun and likable and like many Disney films, they have a wide variety that will allow everyone to have a favorite. Edgar is a nice villain who manages to be not too threatening to kids, but evil enough (I mean he does drug and steal cats and kittens). I have to wonder how the Duchess has kittens since there is no mention of a “mister” in the Duchess life (it also looks like the Duchess must play around since all those kittens look like alley cats).  It is unfortunate that none of the characters are very developed and there are way to many random characters.

The Aristocats has some fun music. My sister had the record for this film so I do have a soft spot for it due to hearing it all the time when I was young. “Ev’rybody Wants to be a Cat”, “Thomas O’Malley Cat”, “The Aristocats”, and “Scales and Arpeggios” were all fun snappy songs.

aristocats ending posing for picture

I don’t trust a grinning cat

The Aristocats has the xerox style of art that Disney adapted for One Hundred and One Dalmatians in 1961. Here, for The Aristocats, it almost looks more raw and unfinished. The new Blu-Ray release of the film has it very clean and it almost looks like they didn’t finish some scenes (especially scenes with the humans who are really pencilly).  I do find it really creepy when they have the cats “dancing” like humans…it is unexpected and weird.

The Aristocats has its moments. It isn’t my favorite Disney film, but I also am not huge fan of this period of Disney in general. It is a movie that kids will probably like, but as an adult it doesn’t have the Disney charm of earlier Disney films. The movie had a proposed sequel for 2007, but plans were scrapped.  Disney followed The Aristocats with Robin Hood in 1973.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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