Babes in Toyland (1961)

Babes in Toyland (1961)

TOMATOMETER

——

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Babes In Toyland is Walt Disney's first live action musical. Taken from the Victor Herbert operetta, the evil landlord Barnaby (Ray Bolger) is out to eliminate Tom (Tommy Sands) in order to marry Mary (Annette Funnicello). Tom is driven to the land of no return and presumably killed. Barnaby's henchmen sell Tom to the gypsies, pocket the money and pretend to have murdered the lovestruck victim. A kindly toymaker (Ed Wynn) loses his shop in an explosion, with Tom and Mary coming to his aid. Barnaby faces off for a battle against an army of wooden soldiers that is magically brought to life. Songs and dance are prominent throughout the story.
Rating:
G
Genre:
Kids & Family , Musical & Performing Arts , Science Fiction & Fantasy , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 limited
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
Buena Vista

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Cast

Tommy Kirk
as Grumio
Kevin Corcoran
as Boy Blue
Henry Calvin
as Gonzorgo
Annette Funicello
as Mary Contrary
Ed Wynn
as Toymaker
Ray Bolger
as Barnaby
Tommy Sands
as Tom Piper
Ann Jillian
as Bo Peep
Bryan Russell
as The Little Boy
Gene Sheldon
as Roderigo
Brian Corcoran
as Willie Winkie
Mary McCarty
as Mother Goose
Jerry Glenn
as Simple Simon
John Perri
as Jack-be-Nimble
David Pinson
as Bobby Shaftoe
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Critic Reviews for Babes in Toyland

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (1)

a flat, stagy, artificially cheerful affair that falls far short of the memorably creepy Laurel and Hardy version of 1934.

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Live-action Mother Goose musical with mild slapstick action.

Full Review… | December 2, 2014
Common Sense Media

An audience of preschoolers and kindergarteners should still appreciate this colorful Disney film, and curious parents might enjoy seeing certain actors at work.

Full Review… | December 27, 2012
Movie Metropolis

Perhaps 105 minutes of this sugary concoction borders on punishment, but when the movie hits a creative groove the results are highly amusing, generating a heightened sense of theatrical entertainment with a definite Disney twist.

Full Review… | December 14, 2012
Blu-ray.com

Disney's first live-action musical is the second, inferior version of Victor Herbert's operetta; the first, in 1934, stars Laurel and Hardy.

Full Review… | January 26, 2012
EmanuelLevy.Com

So-so 1961 Disney take with Annette Funicello, Tommy Sands, and Ed Wynn.

October 24, 2004
Kansas City Kansan

Audience Reviews for Babes in Toyland

½

The big budget Disney extravaganza is the second of three adaptations of the operetta. I generally enjoyed it when I was a kid, but seeing it again recently cooled my enthusiasm about it. Still better than the 1980s version. Mother Goose with the goose puppet that has a bit of an attitude was fun. Annette Funicello as Mary was impossibly sweet and young. Tommy Sands is okay as the male lead Tom. I think Disney changed the musical styles of some of the songs to "modernize" them for the tastes of 50s audiences. It may have been the perfect kind of fairy tale story for 60s audiences still stuck in the 50s. Ed Wynn plays the highly agitated clown Toymaker very well. The Toymaker is preparing for Christmas, but the Christmas themes of the musical are lessened. Tommy Kirk, the ever present Disney boy next door, is wedged into the story as the Toymaker's assistant. His role is pleasant enough, but nothing special. I did not like the scenes with the kids and the dancing, singing trees. Not great puppetry work. I did not like the two actors trying to imitate Laurel and Hardy. The real Laurel and Hardy do a MUCH better job in the 30s version of this story. And Ray Bolger as the villain Barnaby provides an unending stream of cartoon-ish, vaudeville villain mugging. His style of dance just doesn't seem to fit the part. The other supporting fairy tale characters are pretty much ignored, but at least the stop-motion war near the end with actors shrunken to toy size contains some enjoyable effects.

Byron Brubaker
Byron Brubaker

Super Reviewer

½

its a disney classic i love this movie but you hae to keep in mind that its an very old film so the graphics, acting and props arent great!! But its a great light hearted film

Film Crazy
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer

A flick from my youth. This was Disney's first live action musical production and I think it's pretty good. There isn't much to it story wise or even with the acting but I think it's a good one for the kids. Upon watching it again for the first time in decades I was happy with the nostalgia of the film but a little bored in the watching of it.

Jason Spencer
Jason Spencer

Super Reviewer

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