As the Disney Marketing machine starts to give us Saving Mr. Banks clips, TV spots and trailers galore, the Rotoscopers will review the amazing Mary Poppins for your listening pleasure. The movie has a fascinating backstory and what happened behind the scenes was enough to inspire people to make a movie about the troubled production and the relationship between Walt Disney and P. L. Travers, author of the book.
Now, Mary Poppins is a wondrous movie for many reasons, including its fantastic soundtrack, Julie Andrews in her prime (!!!) and a mix of live action and animation that allows us to see D*** Van Dyke dancing with penguins. Nowadays, what with all the CGI in blockbusters, you could argue most movies mix live action with animation. But in the immortal words of Roger Ebert: “In my mind, it isn’t animation, unless it looks like animation.”
So with that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the other movies that mix animation and live action!
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
This is a huge one. It’s arguably the best movie that prominently features both live-action and animated characters and the way they interact is mesmerizing. It’s a classic detective story that features plenty of mystery and laughs. Where else are you going to see Donald Duck and Daffy Duck competing? Or Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny in screen together? Also worth mentioning is femme fatale Jessica Rabbit, who has one of the best lines in the movie: “I’m not bad I’m just drawn that way”
This movie came out in 1988 and brought animation back to the spotlight, paving the way for Disney’s Renaissance. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it. You’ll be intrigued, you’ll laugh and you’ll wonder how on earth did they allow certain jokes to be in a movie children are allowed to watch.
Ah, Space Jam. Some people say it’s not a good movie. However, it features the Looney Tunes teaming up with Michael Jordan in order to defeat aliens in a game of basketball so shut up, everyone. The 1996 movie usually inspires some kind of aggressive nostalgia in people who saw it in their childhoods. Criticism of this movie shall not be tolerated.
The movie is filled with classic Looney Toons madness and has one of the best soundtracks of the 90s. Also, as a fun fact, you can check out the original website for the movie right here. It’s like a living time capsule taking you back to 1995. It’s worth it. Believe me.
Song of the South
You’ve probably heard about this one, too. It was Disney’s first movie mixing animation and live-action and it features an Academy Award winning song that you will now have stuck in your head for the rest of the day. The live-action characters were used a framing device for several animated segments that told the story of Br’er Rabbit, which you probably know if you’ve ever been in Splash Mountain.
However, the movie’s depiction of African-American former slaves is widely regarded as racist now and Disney has never released the movie in its entirety in home video because of this.