There's just something about these old classic stop-motion
animation movies that really makes me…well…feel young
again. Here Comes Peter Cottontail is a classic tale
that parents should feel good about buying their children. Not
only is it cute and catchy, but also it teaches good morals to
boot. It seems that this combination is getting harder and harder
to come by nowadays.
Here Comes Peter Cottontail is the story of the
boisterous little Peter Cottontail (Casey Kasem), a likeable,
albeit reckless bunny rabbit who is trying to become chief Easter
Bunny and ruler of the magical April Valley. But just as Peter is
about to be crowned Chief, the mean and nasty Irontail (the
show's villain, voiced by Vincent Price) interrupts just in time
to declare a contest of merit between he and Peter. So it is
decided that whoever gives away the most eggs on Easter Sunday
will become Chief Easter Bunny. Naturally Irontail doesn't play
fair, so he sabotages Peter's alarm clock so he will oversleep on
Easter day. Irontail wins the contest, and Peter is forced to
seek the help of Seymour S. Sassafrass (Danny Kaye). Sassafrass
lends Peter his "Yestermorrow" vehicle so Peter can
travel back in time to deliver the eggs that he should have
passed out on Easter morning. But as luck would have it, Irontail
foils his plans again, and sabotages the "Yestermorrow"
so it drops them off during all the other holidays of the year.
Peter can only save Easter if he can learn to stop fibbing and
never give up when the going gets tough.
The fantastic ensemble of voice talent is the main reason that
this classic is as good as it is. Danny Kaye narrates and sings
all of the songs, and to put it mildly, he does a remarkable job.
Add to that the familiar voices of Casey Kasem and Vincent Price,
and you've got a verifiable hit on your hands.
If you're worried that your little ones at home won't like this
movie, you should know that my nearly three-year-old daughter has
now watched it over 25 times. So you can be self-assured that it
will get some serious play in your DVD player. Thankfully though
it's such an entertaining holiday classic, I don't mind watching
it several times a day. (Although, if this keeps up for much
longer I may have to hide it from her soon, if only for my own
sanity) If you're like me - a parent always on the lookout for
good children's titles - then you should feel confident about
buying this DVD. The kids will love it, and you'll probably not
mind watching it three times a day, well at least for the first
couple weeks. So hop to it.
Video: Here Comes Peter Cottontail is
presented in 4:3 full screen. For a 1970's movie, this classic
looks surprisingly clean on DVD. There are the expected spots and
blemishes you'd expect from something so old, but for the most
part it's fairly debris-free. The video is very crisp for an
older movie, and is free from any obvious edge enhancement.
Colors are a bit dull, but I attribute this to the source
material. Overall, this I was pleasantly surprised that it looked
as good as it did.
Audio: This is a Dolby Digital 2.0 affair. The
dialogue is very easy to hear at all times, and the music heard
throughout the feature is clearly audible, and quite wonderful to
listen to. Danny Kaye's songs are perfectly timeless and sound
just as good if not better than I remember when I was a kid. For
the age of this release, this is a find sounding DVD.
Extras: There are two main extra features on
this disc. The first is classic cartoon by Rankin/Bass called
"Puss in Boots." It's the classic fairytale that we all
know and love, in cartoon form. This 21-minute feature is a nice
inclusion, even if it doesn't have anything to do with Peter
Cottontail. And because it is a feature length cartoon, it may
get some repeat play from your kids.
The second feature is the Here Comes Peter Cottontail
"Sing-Along Songs." Here you can sing along with all
the wonderful songs sung by Danny Kaye. This is a great feature
and gets used often here at my house. My daughter loves all the
songs in the movie, so I was glad to see this feature offered.
Easter may have come and gone, but that shouldn't stop you from
buying this fun Easter classic. Here Comes Peter Cottontail
wonderful addition to any child's personal DVD collection. The
animation is quirky yet loveable, and the story
and voice talent are all top notch. Your young ones will be
begging to watch this over and over again - believe me, I know. Highly