Since I am already on the subject of fairy tales this week, I thought I might also write about Roberto Gavioli and Rolf Kauka’s movie, Once Upon a Time. It came out in 1973 and was forgotten until I’ve found it a few months ago. I was meaning to write something about it on here but I simply forgot.
It was a west German musically animated film much like Disney’s style only more hilarious and more reminiscent of the short cartoons you’d watch Saturday Mornings. The character designs reminds me of the Rocky and Bullwinkle fairy tale shorts they’d show in between the main story and that brought back a great amount of nostalgia. Fractured Fairy Tales were what they were called and they’d always end the story differently form the original for comedic purposes. Great stuff!
I don’t really care much for the music, but some of the scenes are beautifully designed. The amount of detail on some scenes still baffle me. And of course, taking into consideration that this was the 70s, it wouldn’t be appropriate unless it was really colorful, like really. The only song I can seem to remember is the “Maria” song sang by the prince which just repeats so it’s hard to leave your head. And there was also the chorus sang by the little children towards the end that was somewhat catchy.
One of my favorite characters has got to be the shoemaker and his desperate attempts to get a beautiful wife. The role of the priest was also hilarious. The scene where the king and the prince sits at opposite ends of the long table with servants in between to relay their messages was so hilariously genius that I had to laugh at how no one has done it before. It was a great comedy and I think that was what a lot of children needed- to laugh.
Don’t get me wrong, Disney is great. But they’re not exactly known for their comedy. If anything I find their live action movies much more hilarious than their animation. I am, I have to admit, a fan of the golden age of Disney live action films.
It was somewhat similar to Cinderella, only better. The movie certainly wasn’t all around beautiful, but I think that was what made it a great comedy. There’s this feeling that you shouldn’t take it too seriously because it never got really dark and deep with its message or moral. It’s just good guys win and bad guys lose and those who don’t learn anything from their wicked ways don’t grow.
It was a movie that wasn’t intended to be taken seriously and it manages to be special on its own standing. It was a fun romp to watch and it leaves you feeling good, so what’s not to like? The stereotypes are there but they’re not unbearable. And overall, I still think you should watch it because it’s being genuine.
A lovely person has decided to upload it on Youtube and I couldn’t have been happier to have found it. I hope you can enjoy it too.