Shirley Temple, the original dancing baby, sings her signature song, "On the Good Ship Lollipop," in this heart-rending drama, one of eight films she made in 1934 (!) at the ripe age of 6, and for which she was honored wit... more »h a special pint-sized Academy Award. Temple stars as Shirley, the curly-headed "gosh, oh gee"-adorable mascot to a group of aviators since her pilot father "cracked up and went to heaven." Get out your handkerchiefs when Shirley's mother is also killed, setting up a custody battle between the nasty, highfalutin Joy Smythe's curmudgeon uncle Ned; Loop, another pilot; and the society girl who once left Loop grounded at the altar. Temple's movies are today marketed as children's films, but, like the classic Warner Bros. cartoons, they were made for adults. Her plucky, indomitable spirit helped America get through the Depression. She's perky and precocious to beat the band, but she suffers so on the way to the inevitable happy ending. When she gushes, "It's the best day I've ever had in my whole life," you know tragedy is imminent. In Bright Eyes she is also at the mercy of bratty Smythe (scene-stealing Jane Withers), a pint-sized tantrum-throwing terror who makes Linda Blair in The Exorcist look like a Teletubbie. A further parental advisory in these politically correct times: Joy's eagerly awaited comeuppance is a real slap in the face. --Donald Liebenson« less
Janet A. from ALTA LOMA, CA Reviewed on 6/15/2010...
One of her best movies ...
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Avoid The Colorized Version
L. Shirley | 12/13/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Note that the clamshell version from Fox is colorized. The color is terrible."
One Of Shirley Temple's Best Early Films !
Jake Marsico | Pickerington,OH | 06/13/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The year was 1934.America was wheeling from the devastation of the Great Depression and economic woes.Then came a young actress that helped bring movie patrons back to theatres and also helped an upcoming studio that nearly faced bankruptcy.Shirley Temple was just six years old when she made nearly eight feature films in 1934,but the most beloved and well made of those eight was her second Fox feature film "Bright Eyes" and it definitely shows!
"Bright Eyes" is the simple story of a young girl (Temple) who ends up becoming fascinated with her aviator stepdad pilot (James Dunn) and also facing the hardships of life such as death,adoption and her unquestionable future.Her life is combined with that of a rich family named the Smythe's and their bratty daughter (Jane Withers) and her stepdad's friends.But when tragedy strikes Shirley's mom,it brings her and her stepdad closer than ever.Directed by David Butler and featuring Temple's signature song "On The Good Ship Lollipop",and a standout hilarious performance by Withers,"Bright Eyes" is definitely at times sad,but hilarious,and enjoyable film that has a strong central story mixed with comedy and child-like mischief that will appeal to any family member and adults old or new.Recommended for all !
ABOUT THE DVD: Originally released as part of a short-lived three movie collection of Temple's films to DVD in 2002,it's easy to see why this version is such a big improvement over the '02 release.This version has been digitally restored to its original black & white version with very few specks,dirt,and contrast boosting that plagued the earlier DVD version and also the main intrusion of this new DVD is a brand-new,digitally restored,and enhanced colorized version.The '02 release simply took a lousy-looking and poor color version done in the late '80's and the results were just poor and unnatural-looking compared to today's technology.Speaking of which,this new color version was produced by Legend Films as with previous new Temple DVD releases and the new technology brings out the film's color appeal than the previous incarnation.Purists will definitely stick to the original restored b&w and very little extras (hence the four star rating) round out the disc.All you get is an unrestored trailer for "Heidi" and a trailer for "Little Miss Broadway" which is missing its text and narration (note that the two same trailers both appear on most of the recent Fox Temple DVD's).Finally,Fox has put out a very decent and well-deserved presentation of one of Shirley's best-loved films and far superior to the version beforehand.Highly recommended for classic film buffs and fans alike !"
Bet You'll Be Surprised...
Linda McDonnell | Brooklyn, U.S.A | 12/21/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"...when you find out that Shirley's trademark song, "On the Good Ship Lollipop" premieres in this movie, not on a boat, but on an airplane! Shirley's aviator dad was killed in a crash before the movie begins, but his best pal James Dunn is still very much on the scene and in her life. Darling Shirley and her mom live in the home of some rich folks, for whom Mom is the maid. They are an unhappy family for all their money, with a bratty daughter (played to perfection by future Josephine the Plumber Jane Withers) and a cantankerous old wheelchair-bound uncle. Things take a spin when Shirley's mother is struck by a hit and run driver en route to Shirley's birthday party. The ensuing custody battle is wrapped up just about as you might expect."Bright Eyes" is a very good children's movie, and like so many of Shirley's movies, treats the topic of death with sensitivity--we know the mother has died because we see the birthday cake ornament, a little plane, is broken by the side of the curb. There's a neat scene also when Shirley and Dunn (and a puppy dog) have to bail out of a plane via parachute--that should really brighten the eyes of your little ones!"
Good to have on DVD but...
Real Music-Not Rap | Washington USA | 02/21/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"It's about time these early Shirley Temple films are being reissued on DVD. Yes, "The Little Pincess" has been on DVD for years but up to now that has been the only one available. This is the first of three films released by Fox Studios (Heidi & Dimples being the other two) and while I am happy it is on DVD the picture quality is a BIG disappointment. Maybe because it was made earlier than other Temple films (1934) the graininess really shows through. In this case, it isn't much better than VHS, and that is sad. Perhaps, the original film negative is in poor shape but Fox probably could have done better. So, while I am ecstatic that Shirley Temple (the greatest child film star EVER) is getting her due on DVD, I am disappointed that the quality of this release isn't better. However, it still is better than VHS, but not by much. By the way, the "Heidi" DVD is much better, in both picture quality and story, but "Bright Eyes" is a great movie by a great little actress."