Walt & El Grupo (2009)
Average Rating: 6.3/10
Reviews Counted: 22
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 9
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 6.4/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 3
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 186
Theodore Thomas, son of the late Walt Disney Studios animator Frank Thomas (1912-2004) and director of the acclaimed 1995 documentary Frank and Ollie, helms this second foray into Disney history, Walt & El Grupo (2007). The subject this time lies somewhat outside the boundaries of Disney animation and rests on an unusual footnote: in 1941, Walt Disney personally led a "goodwill tour" and research expedition of South America, with a team of animators in tow whom he collectively christened "El
Apr 26, 2008 Wide
Nov 30, 2010
Walt Disney Pictures - Official Site
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The production values are first rate. But you will wait in vain to hear a good reason for this movie's existence.
While skimming over the troubled waters of impending war and ongoing labor unrest, it's both a vicarious vacation and a crash course in animation.
[Thomas] may need more distance from the subject -- Walt & El Grupo could shed about 20 minutes -- but there's no questioning his sincerity or his instinct for revealing anecdotes.
This may be the first documentary that contains not a single American, living or dead, who is anything but merry of disposition. That cheer carries over to the on-the-spot gusto of el grupo's sketchbooks -- a more accurate tribute than the final cartoons.
A relentlessly upbeat vanity project destined for the Disney family archive.
...a niche effort that has little to offer all but the most ardent of animation junkies.
An intimate, albeit uneventful, story filled with flashy graphics but not a lot of substance.
... less probing documentary than colorful press release for the paternal Disney...
This is the 'untold story.' And apparently there's not much more to tell.
Above all else the film is a treasure trove of fantastic archival material, much of it never before shown.
A bland tourist souvenir, the equivalent of an authorized biography rather than an independent one.
You get a taste of what the Disney group went through and saw, and you see how that work translated into rough sketches and designs.
A lively, well-edited documentary brimming with insight, warmth and humor while captivating audiences both young and old.
Provides a framing device for the Disney creative process as well as the issue of the place of art in geo-politics.
The trouble is that there's no real drama here; Walt is painted as a kind, benevolent soul whose very presence gave a lift to the poor citizens and their dreary lives below the equator.
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