Friday, February 12, 2010

How Disney Killed the Magic

Like most people my age, I was an ardent admirer of Disney animated feature films as a child. Still am. It’s amazing how total strangers will burst into song if you crank up “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” or “A Whole New World” on your iPod – it’s as if Disney created an indestructible bond between children of the late 80s and early 90s.

Which is why, in addition to comfort food, I also revel in the comfort of a good, cheesy, musical Disney film. And lucky for me, all of them have apparently been uploaded to YouTube!

Over the past few weeks, I have often curled up under the covers with a cup of tea and my laptop, and relived the awesomeness that is animated g-rated romance set to music. But the other day, when ‘Colors of the Wind” was stuck in my head, I accidentally stumbled across Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World.

Whoa. Back up. Did anyone even know there was a Pocahontas II?! ‘Cause I sure as hell didn’t get the memo!

Well, there is. And it is a brazen tribute to shitty, straight-to-DVD filmmaking!

Now, to be fair, I probably shouldn’t have watched it directly after enjoying the original Pocahontas. Because the original Pocahontas is all about the freaking power of love and shit, and suddenly, and inconveniently, Disney is faced with problematic historical facts; like, Pocahontas married some random dude named John Rolfe after being kidnapped and dragged to England – and, er, died pretty quickly there after.

Ugh. How do you make that appealing to children?

Now, after getting all emotional about Pocahontas and John Smith’s final embrace before they part for what seems like forever (oh c’mon, you know it makes you want to suffer for love!), I was really, really hoping that Disney would throw caution to the wind and dole out some serious revisionist history shit. But no. In fact, they only partially revised history, made things really awkward, and left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

First off, you’re gonna have to put your happy visions of Pocahontas’ devotion to John Smith aside, because in this movie, Pocahontas is a ho.

Yeah. I couldn’t even make this shit up.

So, anywho, in the first 50 seconds of Pocahontas II, the fat dude with the hat and purple suit is inexplicably walking free (dude, the crew totally mutinied. And chained him up. And arrested him for being an asshole, a murderer of innocents and a liar. WTF?!) and he like totally fucking murders John Smith.

And you’re all like WHOA! DEVESTATION! because if you’re me, you just watched the end of the first movie like, 10 minutes before this.

Disney did not just do that right?!!

Well, as in all Disney movies, the protagonist can’t really die. In this case, it just helps the frazzled writers get rid of John Smith for awhile. But I was really traumatized there for a minute.

Well, Pocahontas somehow hears the news that John Smith is dead (how, I dunno, he was shoved off a cliff into the ocean, no one found the body, and the only witnesses were evil fuckers. But whatever.) and she is suffering from depression. But hey! Don’t worry! This pompous ass young hot dude from England just rolled into town! His name’s John Rolfe, he thinks Indians are savages, but it’s his duty to get the Chief of the Indian tribe back to England to meet the King!

Well, duh, he ends up taking Pocahontas instead, because Chief What’s-His-Face is much too busy for these types of games. And then John Rolfe has to go all My Fair Lady on Pocahontas, because – of course – the only way to save her people from the really, really dumb and bloodthirsty king of England is to dress her up in a gown and powder her face.

Which, of course, now that Pocahontas has changed her clothes, John Rolfe is all like, she’s doable – for a savage! and I’m all like, groan!

So, they go to the ball at the castle and dance, and which point John Rolfe and Pocahontas try to totally make out with each other on the dance floor (because Pocahontas seriously has a thing for white dudes who think they are more civilized than her. Is there a name for this kind of problem?) And fat dude in the purple suit totally makes an AWESOME comment about how Pocahontas is a total ho bag right to her face (once again, I could not make this shit up).

But how can the evil fat man in the purple suit screw this all up for Pocahontas? How can he insure that the Indians get murdered? (Wait, wasn’t he just after gold? Why does he give a fuck what happens to a bunch of people on the other side of the earth?)

Well, if you guessed bear baiting, you are correct!

(Okay, I’m pretty sure no one guessed bear baiting. I have to say, this was a pretty creative, albeit retarded, move on the part of the writers of this travesty of a film.)

Yeah, so, in England back in the day, they really liked to torture bears for fun as a dinner show. Apparently. And the crazy bitch goes totally savage and tries to save the bear by throwing herself on it. (Okay, really? Homegirl would totally be dead. Nobody should hug an angry bear. That’s not a demonstration of savagery, just stupidity.)

Fast forward – Pocahontas is in jail (for hugging a bear?) and THE BEST SCENE OF THE WHOLE MOVIE HAPPENS. It’s a bar scene. Some dudes are talking about Pocahontas being in jail. There’s a mysterious cloaked figure in the corner. The bartender slides a beer down the bar to a customer who says: “WHAT DO I HAVE TO PAY AROUND HERE TO GET SOME GOOD HEAD??

Oh no. You didn’t just do that, Disney. Double entendres are not meant for children’s movies!

I have to admit, I totally went back and watched that scene 3 more times, just to make sure I wasn’t crazy. And. Wow. I’m not crazy.

Well, anyway, the cloaked figure in the corner was John-fucking-Smith (obviously), and he totally goes and teams up with John Rolfe to bust Pocahontas’ ass out of jail. Hilarity ensues, that raccoon and pug team get in on the action, and then every one is all good.

Except John Rolfe and John Smith are both eyeing Pocahontas like she’s a piece of meat, and she keeps clinging to both of them.


So, I was totally waiting for this to turn into cartoon pornography. But that would be unacceptable. So Pocahontas consults mother earth and shit, proves to the king that the evil fat man in the purple suit is evil, and everyone’s saved.

But what man does she choose??!! ‘Cause this can’t end this way!

Well, for the first time in Disney history, the heroine totally gives her “true love” a really fucking lame break up speech about growing apart and shit, and goes and gets busy with the dude she’s only liked for about 2 days. REALLY NOW.

John Rolfe

(What do ya think?)

I. Am. Devastated.

I’m pretty sure that Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World completely and utterly ruined the original Pocahontas film for me. Because, apparently, that bitch went just around the river bend, and found herself a new piece of tight ass!*

Tough break, John Smith. Tough break.

*I think it’s important to note that, historically, John Rolfe was really a super religious man that was completely repulsed by his carnal urges for a savage. But he couldn’t help himself; he had to have her. He probably beat himself with a whip every night of their marriage. Kinky.

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