Disney movies are a huge part of any child’s life. When I was younger, I always looked forward to watching my favorite princesses on the TV. Even as a high school student, I can still remember all of the movies that I grew up with, especially the iconic Disney princess classics.
One princess movie that deserves special attention is Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. Originally released on January 29th of 1959, Sleeping Beauty will be celebrating its 59th birthday this upcoming year. Even now, it can be credited as one of Disney’s most famous princess films. After all of this time, the animated movie still holds a special place in the lives of so many young children for so many reasons.
Sleeping Beauty’s breathtaking scenes were meticulously painted by hand. Eyvind Earle, the artist behind the film, carefully created all of the backgrounds seen throughout the movie; his intricate attention to detail added to Sleeping Beauty’s unbeatable and original feel. Also, Sleeping Beauty was the first animated picture to ever be presented in widescreen, bringing the piece to a new level. This new format was perhaps why the film took so long to make – the project began in 1951, a full eight years before the premiere of the movie.
The movie’s musical score, arranged by George Bruns, was highly successful. The music was adapted from Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty, which had been his most successful ballet. It was performed by the Graunke Symphony Orchestra, and the music went on to be nominated for both an Academy Award and a Grammy.
The storyline of the fairy tale is influential due to the fact that it provides valuable lessons to many of the younger viewers. Sleeping Beauty teaches children to be careful around strangers. If Aurora would have been more cautious around the spinning wheel, much of the conflict could have been averted. The movie shows that excluding others can lead to big trouble; a lesson that is very important to portray to a young audience. After watching the movie, the audience can realize that if the evil fairy Maleficent had been invited to Aurora’s party in the first place, trouble could have been avoided.
Despite being released almost 60 years ago, Sleeping Beauty has still left a massive impact on the world of film. As the first animated piece to be shown in a wide screen format, this film has influenced so many of the animated movies that followed it. Most recently, Disney’s Frozen was created using the same widescreen format as Sleeping Beauty. Additionally, the film’s highly successful music score has inspired many of its successors, contributing to the great music that we expect from Disney in today’s day in age.
The fact that a movie premiered in 1959 and is still such a significant part of the lives of so many just proves the film’s immense importance. Disregarding age, people can always enjoy Disney films. Sleeping Beauty is an ageless film, and a definite must-watch for everyone.
Graphic: Ellie Tsapatsaris