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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

“Pinocchio,” not a real boy, a real creepy flop

Pinnochio+talks+to+Geppeto+during+the+new+movie.+Photo+Courtesy+of+Walt+Disney+Pictures
Pinnochio talks to Geppeto during the new movie. Photo Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures
Pinnochio talks to Geppeto during the new movie. Photo Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures
Pinnochio talks to Geppeto during the new movie.
Photo Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures

IRENE DOMINGUEZ
campus editor
irene.dominguez370@my.tccd.edu

Disney has chosen to grace us with another live action remake of an old classic. It’s just what they do now. Apparently they haven’t gotten better with practice. 

This is another offering available exclusively on the Disney+ platform, but don’t rush off to subscribe to the service, this movie definitely isn’t worth it. 

This Pinocchio remake is directed by Robert Zemeckis who has a long resume of notable works including “Back to The Future,” “Castaway” and “The Polar Express.” Unfortunately, this movie besmirches his reputation. 

It stars Tom Hanks as Geppetto, and Pinocchio voiced by young British actor Benjamin Evan Ainsworth. 

The remake has almost all of the same elements as the original, with some new ones thrown in here and there. The story still revolves around the puppet Pinocchio who is trying to become a real boy for Geppetto, his creator. 

This version just lacks all charm. When the original came out in 1940, it won multiple awards for its music. The animation was also groundbreaking for its time. This remake is giving none of that, we essentially gained nothing new and got this creepy mess.

One of the first things I noticed is that the voice work is very questionable. Jiminy Cricket’s accent sounds forced. There is a random seagull character that is introduced and her voice is awkward and embarrassing. Tom Hanks as Geppetto has an accent that seems to come and go. Sadly, this is definitely one of Tom Hanks worst performances. His Geppetto seems confused throughout the film and it isn’t cute.

The only actor who does great voice work in this whole movie is Keegan Michael-Key. Michael-Key’s performance as Honest John, really showcases his talent as a voice actor. His enthusiasm really brings his character to life. I wish everyone had brought that same energy. 

Unlike the original, this remake mentions Geppetto’s tragic backstory of his wife and young son dying and leaving him all alone. This film could have taken those details and given us something original and maybe that would have been better because I don’t think the original story aged well. 

One of the reasons this movie hits different is that the notion of a little wooden creature coming to life is kind of haunting. There are moments where the lighting really brings out Pinocchio’s dead-eye-look and it is unsettling. 

Another creepy element of the film is the part where a coachman tricks children, Pinocchio included, into going to Pleasure Island for some no-rules-fun. They are turned into donkeys, kidnapped and are never seen again. This part of the film was intended to be a lesson about morality for children, but just two years after the whole Epstein island thing, I was just grossed out. 

  Perhaps I could have seen past all of this and accepted this remake for what it was, a heartwarming money grab. But, they diminished the core life lesson at the heart of the story. The lying scene was very short and his growing nose actually gets him out of a tricky situation. Where is the lesson? 

This remake added nothing useful right up until the end. Little puppet Pinocchio and Gepetto walk off into the light. Does he turn into a boy or not? At least give me closure!

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