I understand that part of the reason this movie is on the list is the animation - which I get, it's beautiful looking. I rented the Blu-ray that had just been restored and it was really shocking, how great it looked. I loved that I could see all of the little brush strokes on all of the drawings. I don't ever remember the film looking so tedious and hand-crafted, and it was really cool to see that. It looked great, and if I was one of those people who had patience for children, I could see sharing it with them, the sort of excitement that you might feel in that. I get it, I guess, I just don't really relate to it or anything.
I get the animation being beautiful and new, but other than that, I'm lost here. I don't really like the story. I don't really like or understand the whole "morality tales for children" genre or Disney movies in general. As an adult, I can understand what was important to film history about this movie, but it's not like kids are going to think about the innovations in 1940's animation. I remember being a kid and being mostly afraid of the scary parts of Disney movies. I was afraid of all the Disney villains. I was scared of Pinocchio when the boys get turned into donkeys and have to go work in the salt mines, of all things. They cry for their parents and get threatened and it's pretty awful. I think as people get older they forget how kids see movies, and how real and frightening the scary scenes are. They remember the heartwarming parts and those parts, I think, make them nostalgic. But everyone that I know remembers being far more afraid of Disney movies than liking them. Anthony said that he had an easier time watching live action movies than animated ones, because he found himself scared by the creepy moments and dark scenes. My mom still gets angry talking about when Bambi has to run out of the burning forest. I actually was never allowed to see Bambi because she was so upset by it as a child.
I guess I don't understand why Disney movies seem to have so many parts that are outright tragic. I understand that most adults don't want to sit through movies that appeal to just kids. They want some excitement and jokes and things of that nature. It just feels like sometimes Disney movies become too sad, like they lose sight of what is appropriate for kids. All the movies my parents, boyfriend, and myself remember liking where the ones where they didn't have huge, depressing parts. I mean, if you go see a kids movie and the adults are crying in the theater, I think something went wrong. But that's just me. Pinocchio definitely isn't as sad as say, The Lion King, or something. But it is scary in some parts, and as my dad said when I asked him his opinion, "it just had a stupid story."
Ebert's Great Movie Essay on Pinocchio