“A puppet is brought to life by a fairy, who assigns him to lead a virtuous life in order to become a real boy.” -IMDB
I’ve long since given up on Disney’s sad attempts at remakes, but Pinocchio pulled out all the stops to make viewers likes myself curious enough to give it a go. Tom Hanks (aka America’s dad)?! Robert Zemeckis (aka director of Back to the Future, one of the greatest films of all time)?! FREE STREAMING?! How could I possibly say no?!
Well, let me clue you in. The fact that Pinocchio is only streaming and did not have a theatrical release should tell you all that you need to know…
Remakes should only be done if they have something new to say or to offer the original story. While it may be intriguing to watch a shot by shot reenactment of an animated film, the novelty wears off within the first five minutes or so. While Pinocchio was actually quite beautiful to watch in terms of the look of it, it brought little else to the original story. And the odd 21st century wisecracks and nods to Disney (which were just as self-serving and self-congratulatory as you would imagine) that the filmmakers decided to add in only ended up detracting from the film.
And what about my main man? The man that got me to watch this travesty in the first place? Well, in my opinion, Tom Hanks can do no wrong. He always brings that T-Hanks (…we’re just gonna let that go) likability and sincerity to his roles. Whether the accent he’s supposed to be doing comes along for the ride is entirely different story…Honestly, at this point, why don’t we just let this man do an American accent for any role? Do we really care whether Geppetto has an Italian accent or not?! I don’t!
Honestly, the fact that Disney chose to remake one of the creepier films in its portfolio is bewildering on its own. Most of us barely remember the father-son storyline in the original Pinocchio. Instead, we remember the moments that traumatized us, let me list them for you now:
-Main character kidnapped by almost every adult he interacts with
-CHILDREN ABDUCTED, TURNED INTO DONKEYS, AND SOLD INTO SLAVERY!
-Giant sea monster
-Main characters eaten by said giant sea monster
-Possible death of main character
-And one more thing…oh yeah…CHILDREN ABDUCTED, TURNED INTO DONKEYS, AND SOLD INTO SLAVERY!
Guillermo Del Toro’s version can’t come soon enough. Now THAT movie is going to bring something new to the original, horrifying source material. So mark your calendars for December 2022 to see that version and feel free to skip this snoozer in the meantime.
Rating: 5 out 10 Claire Bears
If you like this movie, you should also watch: Oh, you know Disney+ is full of dismal remake/sequel attempts…take your pick!
With: Tom Hanks, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Benjamin Evan Ainsworth
Directed By: Robert Zemeckis