Saturday, November 17, 2007

A Sensible Version of Wind in the Willows

Join Mole, Ratty, Badger, and of course, the irrepressible Mr. Toad in this hilarious adaptation of Kenneth Grahame’s classic tale of friendship and mischief. Mole and Ratty set out for a fun-filled day on the river, but they soon meet up with Mr. Toad, whose obsession with cars only leads to big trouble! After a daring jail break, Mr. Toad joins his friends in a madcap battle to regain his home, Toad Hall, from the villainous weasels. The beautifully-animated film brings to life one of the best-loved children’s books of all time, and is sure to delight children of all ages.

Kenneth Grahame’s classic children’s book
The Wind in the Willows has been adapted for films (animated and otherwise) for several decades now. I recently watched an animated version of the fabulous story that was produced by Rankin/Bass in 1987 (some sites and videos say ‘83). I felt like the animation could have been better (it’s not very pretty and resembles The Hobbit) but I got so caught up in the story I was able to ignore it.

I just adored this little feature! It follows the original Grahame story faithfully, more so than any
other adaptation I’ve ever seen. There were a few minor changes of course but they left in the important things (including the Pan and Wayfarer sequence). The movie also had quite a few wonderful songs (a must for an animated film), lot of which used the verses and dialogue from the book!

This version of The Wind in the Willows starred many wonderful voice talents too including those of Roddy McDowall as Ratty (who was such a great actor that he had appeared in over 200 movies or voiced characters in them before his death in 1998) and Charles Nelson Reilly as Toad (who is probably best known for voicing Killer from All Dogs Go to Heaven). I suggest everyone should see this little gem! That is, if you ever can get your hands on it. Unfortunately it has never been released to DVD and the VHS tapes are rare now. I watched an old copy from my library.

1 comment:

  1. One of my earliest memories of Disneyland was Mr. Toad's Wild ride. I do not know how old I was, pretty little probably but the ride was too wild for me. I was screaming at the end of it my mom recalls.

    Now I LOVED Peter Pan. I think I really thought I was flying in the ship plus, Disney's Peter was just so cool.



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