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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Treasure Planet (2002)



Reviews and Comments

This Disney animated adventure film transposes Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island into outer space and features a cast of aliens and robots in addition to humans. It's an interesting experiment. One might hope for a more traditional adaptation of the novel, but it's been filmed successfully many times, and here is an intriguing twist.

Visually, the movie is gorgeous. Spacescapes abound, and they are far more than black backgrounds with white dots. And there is something exhilarating about seeing seafaring galleons soaring through the cosmos. Physics isn't the point of Treasure Planet -- it's the color and character of the world that counts, and it is certainly colorful and inspiring enough that we accept its own rules of physics without question.

I'm not sure what went wrong. Something is missing from the last third or so; perhaps it is that the movie becomes too intent on haphazard action scenes and shafts its characters in the process. Certainly the characters are vibrant and quirky, but the climax of the film should have been more centered on the coming of age of Jim Hawkins and less on racing through an earthquake to a space warping portal in time.

I liked the movie, though. It fires the imagination and provides something beautiful to look at at the same time. I would love to have John Silver's artificial arm. Imagine the possibilities!