Actors: Jodi Benson, Christopher Daniel Barnes, Rene Auberjonois, Pat Carroll, Paddi Edwards
Directors: John Musker, Ron Clements
Number of discs: 3
Rated: G (General Audience)
Studio: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Release Date: October 1, 2013
Run Time: 83 minutes
Film: 5 out of 5 stars
3D: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars
“The Little Mermaid” is one my favorite Disney films of all time. I remember the very first time I saw it dating back to 1989. Crazy that it is nearly 25 years old. The film has so many amazing song and will have you singing along whether you have seen the film yesterday or 20 years ago. The film was the winner of two Academy Awards for Best Music, Original Score and Original Song (“Under The Sea”). My daughter, who is 15 months old, loves Ariel and we got to introduce her to this film for the very first time. Let me tell you, she didn’t even turn her head once from the screen and did I mention she is 15 months old. Parents will understand what I mean by this. Disney really sprinkled some magic onto this release to deliver this film finally on Blu-ray with an amazing presentation. Now if we can just get “Aladdin” to Blu-ray, I will be complete.
Official Premise: Free-spirited mermaid Ariel (voiced by Jodi Benson) sets off on the adventure of a lifetime with her best friend, the adorable Flounder (Jason Marin) and a reggae-singing Caribbean crab named Sebastian (Samuel E. Wright) at her side. But it will take all of her courage and determination to make her dreams come true, and to save her father Triton’s (Kenneth Mars) beloved kingdom from the sneaky sea witch Ursula (Pat Carroll).
The film’s voice cast is so amazing Jodi Benson is just perfect as Ariel, here voice is what a princess should sound like. Cute and magical. Is it bad that I also still have a crush on Ariel after nearly 25 years 😉 Samuel E. Wright really gives life to Sebastian and is so much fun. Also Buddy Hackett is a shear blast voicing one of my favs Scuttle. Zut alors, I have missed one! We can’t forget Rene Auberjonois’ amazing take with Chef Louis.
Disney did not cheap out with this new Diamond Edition Blu-ray. The film included two Blu-ray’s, one 3D and the other 2D. There is a DVD copy of the film, along with a digital copy, which can be redeemed on Ultraviolet streaming sites. Note, you will also receive a $5.00 DisneyStore.com gift card if you redeem the digital copy, which is a no brainer. Besides all that there is still more since there is an exclusive 10 song digital download including Carly Rae Jepsen’s new take on “Part of Your World”. So to me this release definitely screams Diamond Edition.
Let’s get to the 3D aspect of the film now. Obviously, this film was never made in 3D but with the recent hit of films like “The Lion King”, Disney would be stupid not to cash in. I have to admit, I really loved this film in 3D. I thought that it just felt so deeper, maybe it was the water, but it really expanded this undersea world. The action scenes were amazing including (my favorite) the shark chase and the final confrontation. But of course what is even better is that the film also looks stunning on 2D Blu-ray as well. Disney really delivered a solid 108p presentation here, along with an amazing (not stunning) DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 surround track. The music plays so well and has never sounded better.
In terms of special features, there is not a whole lot new here but it still includes some solid extras. There is the All-New Music Video for Carly Rae Jepsen’s new take on “Part of Your World”. “The Real Little Mermaid: Live Action Reference Model” looks into finding the look for Ariel. “Part of Her World: Jodi Benson’s Voyage To New Fantasyland” is a trip with the voice behind Ariel to explore Walt Disney World’s latest attraction. Other extras include “Howard’s Lecture”, “@ Disney Animation”, “Deleted Character” and some Classic DVD Bonus Features. Lastly I was a big fan of “Disney Intermission”, which is an interactive sing-along for these classics and timeless songs.