Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Ornella Muti, Don Ameche, Peter Riegert, Tim Curry
Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Runtime: 109 minutes
For no apparent reason, 1999 became the year of The King and I. The 1956 version with Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr received a glorious digital transfer on video, and Jodie Foster starred in a new, nonmusical version of this story of the King of Siam and the English schoolmistress hired to teach his children. The oddest rendition of the story is this animated version, complete with the famous Rodgers and Hammerstein musical numbers. Richard Rich's (The Swan Princess) animation is on par with most non-Disney features, but the film is chock full of dull villains, playful animals, and ridiculous action sequences. It's a good introduction into this culture for kids who will watch only animation, but the question remains, "Why was this made?" The 1956 version has aged very well, and is fabulous family entertainment. Still, the animated version is nearly an hour shorter, and for those who want hot-air balloon rescues, this would be the version to keep. --Doug Thomas
You finally made it, Frankie! Oscar night! And here you sit, on top of a glass mountain called "success." You're one of the chosen five, and the whole town's holding its breath to see who won it. It's been quite a climb, hasn't it, Frankie? Down at the bottom, scuffling for dimes in those smokers, all the way to the top. Magic Hollywood! Ever think about it? I do, friend Frankie, I do...