Sunday, November 17, 2019

The Little Mermaid 30th Anniversary

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(Guest Post by David T)

Dear Ariel, Eric, Ursula, and the Cast of “The Little Mermaid,”

Happy 30th Anniversary! You have reached a milestone in cinematic history! Thirty years ago on the 17 November 1989, all of you splashed onto the big screen and into hearts’ of millions, including mine.

I was 10 years old when I saw your movie. I remember sitting in a darkened theater with my aunts and younger sister, and being transported “under the sea.” Upon seeing your wedding dress, Ariel, one of my aunts whispered that she wanted one just like yours when she got married. I received toy versions of you and Ursula in my Happy Meals. And then around 6 months later, my family purchased your film on home video, where once again I visited “part of your world.”

In the years and decades that have passed, I’ve collected The Little Mermaid soundtrack on audio cassette and CD, and the film on video cassette and DVD. I’ve memorized many scenes and musical numbers from your movie. Ariel, you taught me that it’s acceptable to walk or swim a different path, even when others, including fathers, don’t understand. And that song is a very powerful way to bare and express my soul. While being evil is self-destructive, Ursula, you’ve entertained me with your villainy. No one else can convince “poor unfortunate souls” with such enthusiasm to make a deal quite like you. Flounder, you are an example of being a loyal and supportive friend; you’ve shown that views of humans and young mermaids can change, Sebastian; and Scuttle, you’ve started a trend among human girls and boys in how to really use a “dinglehopper.” And your determination and courage, Eric, to find and not let go of the girl or mermaid that you love is applauded.

All of you should be proud of the legacy of The Little Mermaid. Your film revitalized Disney movie making. It set the standard for storytelling, believable and lovable characters, music, and animation. The Little Mermaid ushered in the “renaissance” in Walt Disney animated feature films, and set a precedence that storytellers in animation both inside and outside Walt Disney studios have sought to follow. Your film has impacted my family too. When The Little Mermaid returned to theaters in 1997, I was nostalgic about my childhood. To revisit the magic of seeing your movie on the big screen, I took my sisters to see it, the youngest watching your film for the first time in theaters. Eleven years later, my younger sister introduced her daughter to The Little Mermaid on the small screen when showing your movie to her in the DVD format. Since that time, my niece has loved you, Ariel, and your world. She has watched your movie over and over again, has your doll and other toys, and got an Ariel mini doll key chain when we visited the Lego Store this year.

THANK YOU for three memorable decades of lessons, laughter, tears, music, entertainment, and happily ever after! And here’s to another 30 years of sharing these gifts with me, my family, and the world! Happy 30th Anniversary!!!

With Love,

David



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