Disney+ in August 2021 continued with a behind-the-scenes theme park documentary and a not so unexpected new live-action interpretation of a Disney animated movie.
Behind the Attraction (Season 1, Episodes 6-10) [6.5/10]
After the first half of this series was covered in the Disney+ watchlist: July 2021, I already knew what to expect from the second half: hit-and-miss humor mixed with more or less known background information about the Disneyland parks. This time the selection was a bit weird, as only It’s a Small World fit the attraction theme, with the rest of the show dedicated to the castles, hotels, trains, trams, monorails, and the Hall of Presidents.
Granted one could call everything except the hotels “attractions”, too (even though they were more transportation and museum-like experiences), but with so many other exciting rides, it felt something like a missed opportunity.
Of course it’s no surprise that Disney relies more on its past glories than trying anything new in the live-action department, but the way how some background stories of villains are told (as in Maleficent) makes one wonder if these aren’t more interesting than the heroes or heroines. Be it as it may, Cruella is fun most of the time thanks to its charismatic lead Emma Stone and a great soundtrack, but it sadly tries too hard to give her an origin story that is both clichéd and too cruel (pun intended) to be taken seriously.
At least the dogs don’t play much of a role as in the terribly boring The Lady and the Tramp live-action movie (see Disney+ watchlist: March 2020), but having an ending to please formerly neglected ethic groups in the Disney world leaves a bad rolling-one’s-eyes aftertaste, especially because it doesn’t make much sense for the whole 101 Dalmatians idea. However, we’ll see with the inevitable sequel if it still all makes sense in the long run.
So there we have it once again: Disney+ working as a vehicle to promote Disneyland parks (which is no bad thing if you love them as I do) and doing questionable live-action versions of past animated times.