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Bolt – Disney’s attempt at recycling

Submitted by on January 14, 2009 – 6:26 pmOne Comment

boltI have a problem with . Why remake something when it was often done well enough in the first place? The remake is usually worse than the original so why bother at all? Just do a standard and release a “specially mastered” edition of the original.

Even worse than remakes though, is the film that claims to be an original story but clearly a rehash of others. Sadly, Bolt (Disney’s cute CG offering) falls into this category, so unless you enjoy reading about how Disney has bastardised better stories (in my opinion) I suggest you stop reading here.


The canine star of a fictional sci-fi/action show that believes his powers are real embarks on a cross country trek to save his co-star from a threat he believes is just as real.


I am sure we can all appreciate (but not even contemplate) the amount of work that goes into the construction of a CG film. They are responsible for not only animating many layers on every single frame but also keeping the ideas fresh and the still amusing. This is an inordinate amount of work and for anyone who has ever told the same joke ten times will appreciate, each punch line somehow loses its after a short time.

You have to bear this in mind when criticising a CG film but that shouldn’t alter your decision as to whether it was good fun or not. Pixar makes a point of coming up with unusual and unique stories that retain your interest. It is as if the computer animation came second to the tale that was told. It seems that Disney’s own animation studios needs to heed this as Bolt feels like a mash up of old stories.

If you were going to spend nearly four years on a film, you’d make sure that every scene in it was necessary and every joke as funny as it could be whilst the story was as tight as a drum. Watching Bolt makes you think that the storyline was written on the back of a restaurant napkin in the following format:
An Incredible Journey meets, ’s refusal to accept he is a toy, meets the whole of Toy Story 2.

I don’t know about you but the above scrawl is far from being a unique story! That is not to say it doesn’t entertain, because it does. Unfortunately though, you just feel as if you have paid to see a film that you already own on DVD / laserdisc / video.

Okay so some of the scenes are visually attractive but still not even close to the level of detail of Wall-E. Therein lies the trouble it seems, for many have gone to the theaters expecting to see the latest Pixar film. This is NOT a Pixar movie, merely one made by Disney’s own animation team and I can assure you that it shows.

I for one am disappointed with the recycling effort that was Bolt. So much more could have been made from the amusing characters such as Rhino (the hamster) and the New York pigeons. From a studio that brought us along with The Lion King, I had hoped for so much more. As it stood though, I left the cinema feeling empty. Thanks Disney! You have the ability (it seems) to not only make dreams come true, but destroy them in the space of 90 minutes.


If you are in a desperate “where to take the kids” moment, then take them to the more expensive 3D showings of Bolt. Don’t bother in 2D because you’ll never accept that Disney had the gall to release this as an original film, and at least in 3D you’ll be too busy trying to reach out for the hamster!

Rating: 2 out of 5

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