Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Adventures of Mark Twain |
Actors: James Whitmore, Michele Mariana, Gary Krug, Chris Ritchie, John Morrison
Director: Will Vinton
Genres: Action & Adventure, Kids & Family, Animation
Based on elements from the stories of Mark Twain, this feature-length ClaymationÂ(r) fantasy follows the adventures of Tom Sawyer, Becky Thatcher, and Huck Finn as they stowaway aboard the interplanetary balloon of Mark Tw... more »
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Dark and Strange
Timothy Hulsey | Charlottesville, VA United States | 01/15/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Claymation animator Will Vinton's first -- and to date, only -- full-length feature is based on Mark Twain's lesser-known writings, including "Tom Sawyer Abroad" and "The Mysterious Stranger." (It also owes a substantial debt to Justin Kaplan's critical biography "Mr. Clemons and Mark Twain.") The storyline is episodic and incoherent, but individual scenes -- especially the "Mysterious Stranger" sequence -- are as good as animation gets.
Vinton's "Adventures of Mark Twain" is probably too strange for most audiences, and its nightmarish imagery is not suitable for young children. Twain buffs, however, will be delighted."
Wonderful Animation that should have broad appeal
John J. Schauer | Chicago, IL USA | 03/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Although The Adventures of Mark Twain is a Claymation extravaganza, it shouldn't be thought of as just kids' fare--in fact, much of the subject matter is not only intelligent on an adult level but also a bit dark. The premise is that three youngsters--Tom, Huck and Becky from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer--stow away on a fantastic lighter-than-air craft piloted by Mark Twain, who was born during a year when Halley's Comet visited our atmosphere and is trying to join up with it during one of its return visits. As he puts it, the Lord noted that those two freaks of nature came in together, and they should go out together. Along the way, the kids start to question the outcome of the trip and plot to hijack the ship. They also encounter several of Twain's short stories that are dramatized as subplots, a couple of which end up revealing crucial aspects of Twain's own character. The Clamation effects are a knockout, highly imaginative, and the plot has more substance than you might think on first approaching it. You might want to view it with your youngest children, since there are some potentially frightening considerations of mortality. Overall, however, most viewers should find it highly entertaining."
Stephanie Politte | Houston, Tx United States | 01/16/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I can hardly believe that I've finally found this on DVD! I could not be more pleased. I've looked and looked over the years to no avail and suddenly PRESTO! BANGO! There it is. I used to watch this with my boys when they were very young. They did not understand the symbolism or humor then but were attracted by the incredible claymation. It's neat to see them watch it again years later and sudenly the lights go on and there is something deeper to appreciate.
I can't/won't speak to the narrow minds that kept Huckleberry Finn off so many library shelves for such a long time but we all understand that Mark Twain did not necessarily write for an audience of children. This genius of an American writer gave us things to think about and consider...uncomfortable issues for the time and gauging from some of the more emotional responses/reviews, still difficult for a few today but I challenge that truly GREAT art does that.
If you are a fan of Mark Twain and don't mind entertainment that encourages exploration of the human spirit, our ideals, aspirations, disappointments, patterns of life and the conclusion of that then I HIGHLY recommend this gem. It's definitely a keeper...you know, one of those special works that you keep in the closet even after you can recite the dialog and have given away all the other older movies you've grown tired of. It is wonderfully representative of Twain so if you are not enamored of his work you may not "get" this.
I saw some reviews that found the movie choppy but I never thought this was the case. It's a film that requires your full attention but it's so entertaining that you will want to watch again and again. Over time you will pick up on things that you may have missed the first few times around and have one of those OHHHH now I get it moments....This is not Sesame Street...it's contemplative, thoughtful and BEAUTIFULLY done...enjoy...
The Adventures of Mark Twain DVD
Scott R. Parrott | Lake Elsinore, CA | 03/11/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"First off, I own a copy of this movie on VHS and there's just no comparison between the two (VHS and DVD). The colors are vibrant and crisp, and the sound is near perfect! Not to mention (but I will), the DVD is in wide-screen format, which is a nice feature as well.
As for the film itself, this is "old-school" Claymation. I would say 99% of what is mis-en-scene is actually clay. It must have taken years to complete this project! In comparison to stop-animation features, such as the Wallace and Gromit series or Nightmare Before Christmas, the animation is not quite as "glossy" or perfect, but that is what gives this film it's charm.
Overall, the film does a fine job at presenting some of Mark Twain's more popular stories. The primary story-line, however, focuses on Mark Twain's attempt to meet up with Halley's Comet, through the use of a unique flying contraption (basically, it's a blimp). Mark Twain's literary subjects Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, and Becky Thatcher are introduced to us as stowaways on Twain's vessel, and thus begins the film's introduction of additional, lessor known stories. One of which, "The Diaries of Adam and Eve", is woven throughout most of the film. It's a great and poignant look at relations between men and women. My only complaint is the screeching/scratchy sounding voice of the actress who played Eve. Holy cow! What were they thinking?!?! It's really annoying and I found myself wanting to clear my throat every 30 seconds. Sorry...had to mention that.
For me personally, I really enjoy the scene involving "The Mysterious Stranger". Extremely well done!
Overall, this is a classic film! However, I fear that most people who watch this film expecting the typical "happy, fun for all ages" movie, might be a bit disappointed. This film unfolds a bit slowly, but is well worth the wait. You just need to be patient. And knowing how kids (and adults) are today, if you're not dealing with 3 second MTV edits, forget about it. However, for those of you who appreciate the works of Mark Twain and have a creative bone in your body, then I'm sure you will enjoy this outstanding effort!"