Latin Baby ~ Disney’s Latin America Films

¡SUPER-GRANDE! review – The 3 Caballeros re-watched

phoenixme5My Three Caballeros DVD finally came in, or more accurately, I finally arrived back at the place where it was shipped to. So, I got to re-watch it in its entirety for the first time in about….10 years?

BUT ANYWAY….the review….
So, the opening few segments were quite educational and very much in the spirit of Saludos Amigos. I thought they were cute and well-done overall. Favorite moment here: when Donald starts imitating the flamingos.

The cold-blooded penguin obviously came straight out of the Saludos sessions, far more similar to that film than the rest of this one. It’s cute, but nothing too exciting.

José’s opening and bridge segments (Have you been to Baía, etc.) are top-notch, as I’ve no doubt said countless times before. The pop-up book is an inventive idea, and explains a lot of the surrealness of the Baía scenes *rolls eyes*. Favorite moment: the samba train, the little tune they use there is so wonderful.

“Baía” (my favorite song from the movie) may be a little boring for the kids, but the animation is SPECTACULAR, with the multi-layers and pretty sunset colours. Fave moment: all of it!

“Os Quindins de Yayá” is also a great song. This is the first blended animation we see in the film, and it’s done very very well, synchronized to the music and with some nice dancing. Fave moment: probably when Jose and Donald first walk down the street with Aurora Miranda, I like how they sort of bounce along to the beat.

Panchito’s opening segment features a Fantasia-like “sound track,”

which was really neat, with José and Donald dancing in front of it while he sings the mariachi song “Jalisco no Te Rajes” (from which the tune for “The Three Caballeros” song was taken).  Then of course, they sing the title song, which I’ve probably reviewed before. (Favorite moment: the whole thing!) Then we get to see….

Las Posadas the Mexican Christmas tradition, told by Panchito with adorable Mary Blair drawings. (think “Small World” adorable.) This is probably the only other part of the movie besides the first “bird film” segments that resembles Saludos very strongly: it’s clearly educational and travelogue-like.

Panchito’s tour of Mexico (“Mexico”) features a nice song and some well-integrated footage of the guys flying over various landscapes, visiting some dancers in Veracruz, and Donald going mad with lust in Acapulco:

It’s very educational for those of you who want to know all about 1940s bathing suits. While the song “Mexico” is sung, some illustrations of Mexican culture and places are shown. Favorite moment: the dance in Veracruz, it has some nice animation and a very catchy tune.  I also love Jose Carioca playing the bass there.

The cactus dance (“Jesusita en Chihuahua”) was awesome, and I don’t really believe the deal about phallic imagery here, it seemed innocent enough to me. The girl’s mariachi-cowgirl-riding outfit was very cool (I want one…) and this song always gets stuck in my head for days.

And here’s where it gets a bit odd…

“You Belong to My Heart” is a beautiful song, with some nice simple animations of Dora Luz singing (while Donald goes nuts over her). Then, he basically goes into a hallucination of surreal girls and sped-up versions of the title song. It’s not surreal in a cool way like the earlier Bahia segment either, it’s downright weird. HOWEVER, it pushed the limits of what could be done with combo animation back then, and if you look at it as a surrealistic sort of “test” experimental “wowee!” segment, you’ll really be amazed. I know that LOTS OF PEOPLE like to say that Disney and his artists did LSD…besides being historically not quite possible and totally against Disney’s strict codes regarding such things back then, this only proves that people who say that haven’t tried to look into these segments a little deeper. Don’t really have a favorite moment here.

The ending scenes: well, these are sort of a chaotic, disjointed ending to the equally chaotic “You Belong to My Heart.” They involve fireworks and bullfighting. I don’t really have a favorite moment here, I never really cared for the ending.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I love the song “Baia”, it has to be my favorite as well. But it always bugs me, because It’s not “Baia” but “Bahia”, that’s how it’s actually spellt. The animation is beautiful, and it in itself is a good song.

Comment by Kenzie

Bahia is the correct spelling, following the Portuguese. The old English spelling was Baía with an accent on the i.

Comment by reccaphoenix

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