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Sleeping Beauty (Special Edition)
Sleeping Beauty
Special Edition
Actors: Mary Costa, Bill Shirley, Eleanor Audley, Verna Felton, Barbara Luddy
Directors: Charles A. Nichols, Clyde Geronimi, James Algar, Wilfred Jackson
Genres: Action & Adventure, Kids & Family, Animation
G     2003     1hr 15min

Heralded by audiences and critics alike, SLEEPING BEAUTY was the final fairy tale to be produced by Walt Disney himself. Now fully restored with revolutionary digital technology, its dazzling colors, rich backgrounds, and ...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Mary Costa, Bill Shirley, Eleanor Audley, Verna Felton, Barbara Luddy
Directors: Charles A. Nichols, Clyde Geronimi, James Algar, Wilfred Jackson
Creators: Bill Peet, Charles Perrault, Erdman Penner, Jeff Kurtti
Genres: Action & Adventure, Kids & Family, Animation
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Classics, Animation
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Animated,Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 09/09/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/1955
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1955
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 15min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 12
Members Wishing: 0
Edition: Special Edition
MPAA Rating: G (General Audience)
Languages: English, Spanish
See Also:

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Member Movie Reviews

Cassandra B. (cass75) from VANDALIA, MI
Reviewed on 3/2/2011...
great clasic, my neice loves it.
Kathleen O. (Kathleen) from WALDPORT, OR
Reviewed on 8/15/2009...
I love this Disney cartoon movie. It is simply enchanting. My granddaughter loves the little fairies and it has beautiful music and a very happily ever after ending. Wonderful!
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

Still Looks Great
Marc Ruby? | Warren, MI USA | 11/26/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I vividly remember the release of Sleeping Beauty. I was old enough to go see it myself - just barely. There I was sitting way up front eating my popcorn and all of a sudden this spectacular dragon materialized right before my eyes. Popcorn forgotten, I was hooked. Cartoons never looked the same to me, and I spent the rest of my life inhaling fantasy and science fiction on a quest for the same thrill.Animation has changed quite a bit in the ensuing years, but even today Sleeping Beauty is a towering achievement. Now I'm more sensitive to the tricks of the art and can see the masterful use of perspective that made the scenes leap out at you. When I first picked up this DVD I half expected to be disappointed, to find it really wasn't so glorious in retrospect. This is hardly the case - this film is just as vibrant and alive as it was in 1959.The added dimension now is that I can see how Disney's work was a formative influence on animation even today. Artist/Directors like Miyazaki owe much to this film and its predecessor Snow White. And they freely admit it. As a production, Sleeping Beauty created a sense of legitimacy for animation that proved that high quality animation was something well beyond the Saturday morning funnies.Disney took a great risk when creating this film, pouring a tremendous amount of resources in making it something as perfect as was possible for his time. While the studio reaped the financial benefits, the audience was the real winner, as a whole genre exploded before our eyes. Even now, with anime rapidly becoming a force to be reckoned with, this film stands out for story, art, and music.The additional features, especially those that retell the making of the film, are excellent as well. All captures in fine detail on this DVD. This is a must see for anyone who still loves a fairy tale."
Once Upon A Time In 1959: A Disney Masterpiece
Rachel Garret | Beverly Hills | 05/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"1959: Disney's presence had already been established. "Snow White" was the first animated film ever to grace the big screen and Disney had dazzled audiences with the 1940 "Fantasia". But in 1959, "Sleeping Beauty" won the hearts of fairy tale lovers, romance lovers and the young at heart. Disney was back in the saddle. The animation to the Sleeping Beauty was taken from the greeting card designs and artwork of a 50's artist. Set in the medieval 14th century, at times resembling the beautiful tapestries and cathedrals of the day, Sleeping Beauty is embellished with cool hues of purple, blue, green and black. A magic romanticism fills the air from start to finish. The score to the film was taken from the ballet music of the Tchaikovsky ballet by the same name. "The Sleeping Beauty" ballet is in fact Tchaikovsky's greastet musical masterpiece, and Disney merely sliced up some of the melodies to fit certain moods and scenes in the film. He also put lyrics to the enchanting "Sleeping Beauty Waltz"- in the song "Once Upon A Dream" in which the Prince and the would-be Sleeping Beauty meet for the first time, waltz and fall in love.True in many respects to the old fairy tale, which some claim originated in Germany, others in France, where it is known as "La Belle Au Bois Dormant"- the tale is brought back to life through classic Disney charm. Princess Aurora (named after the Roman goddess of the dawn) is born to King Stephen and his Queen (The March from the Tchaikovsky ballet plays) and all the inhabitants of the land come to her Christening in the great hall of the castle. Aurora's three fairy godmothers Flora, Fauna and Merryweather (later Disney animators said they based them on three actual little old ladies) bestow the baby princess with the gifts of song and grace. But the Gothic enchantress Maleficent, the rotten apple in the bunch, was not invited and naturally, she is outraged. She wears a purple-black robe, has Devil horns on her head and her constant companion on her shoulder is a black raven. "Sometimes I don't think she's very happy" Fauna says of her. Caught up in a nasty mood, the evil sorceress casts an evil spell on Aurora. She will prick her finger on a spinning wheel an die on her sixteenth birthday. To avoid this catostrophe, King Stephen orders all the spinning wheels burned. Merriweather, the fairy in blue, brings hope- only the kiss of a brave and noble prince will lift the curse of the death-like sleep.That prince is Phillip, who was already engaged to wed Aurora as a boy, (in an obvious statement about political unions in European monarchies). The three fairies do their best to prevent the terrible fate on Aurora, so they hide with her in their cottage in the deep forest and change her name to Briar Rose, raising her as their own child. But.. luck would have it, she meets Prince Phillip as he is hunting, they waltz and fall in love and she is brought back to the castle where she was born. There, Maleficent makes her prick her finger on the spinning wheel in a hypnotic trance. The spell is cat Poor Aurora...But you know the rest, don't you ? Fairy tale loves always have a happy ending. The Tchaikovsky music, the artistic animation, and the engaging story will delight audiences as far into the future as 2059. In 1959, children and young girls might have been captivated (they said that Aurora was based on either Leslie Caron or Audrey Hepburn) but in the future, the tale will still win hearts. Young girls will once again be gripped. Virtue will be rewarded. After all, "true love conquers all.""
Should be part of any child's DVD collection
Julie Neal | Sanibel Island, Fla. | 03/09/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"In 1959, the New York Times called Sleeping Beauty "a crisply stylized fairyland where the colors are rich [and] the sounds are luscious." In his book The Disney Films, critic Leonard Maltin writes that Sleeping Beauty is "a very good film, but more so for older audiences than for young children." The Gospel According to Disney says the movie illustrates "an eternal promise of resurrection," while From Walt to Woodstock claims it is a "therapeutic experience" that celebrates "a male-female relationship based on true equality."

As for me, I'd say that regardless of what you read into it, Sleeping Beauty is a must-own. A true Disney classic, the movie has such stunning visuals and such a strong villain that it makes up for its one major flaw: the lack of a good lead character.

The art, for example, is astounding. Full of bright 1950s color, each background is a graphic collage of rectangles and straight lines that is filled to the edges with meticulously sharp detail. On each tree you see every leaf; on each shrub you see every thorn. It's a look that set the stage for other Disney movies to come, such as Pocahontas, Mulan and Hercules.

As a whole, the characters are terrific. Kids will love the fairies. On-screen longer than anyone else, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather fly like bumblebees, ooze oodles of personality and are truly funny. They lose their temper and make many mistakes, especially in their attempts to bake a birthday cake and sew a dress.

The villain is perhaps the scariest in any Disney film. "The mistress of all evil," devil-horned, green-skinned Maleficent is a sarcastic, high-class horror show all by herself. She curses baby Aurora to death, imprisons a prince so that he can't save the grown girl, and eventually turns herself into a towering dragon that breathes green fire.

The movie's only weakness is the princess herself. Aurora -- dare I say it? -- is quite a snooze. Unlike the leads in Cinderella or Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, this 16-year-old is a plain, passive Barbie doll who sings like an opera star. Unlike Cinderella or Snow White, she has no history of being mistreated. She's likable enough, but tough to relate to.

Still, that's the opinion of an adult, not a child. I give Sleeping Beauty five stars because of the art, because young kids -- especially girls -- will love it, because parents will also be entertained, and because its wholesome message that love conquers hate has rarely been presented better. A product of its time, the film is not perfect but still tough to beat. If you have kids and are building a collection of DVDs for them, this should be on your list."