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Bon Voyage! (1962)

Fred MacMurray , Jane Wyman , James Neilson  |  NR |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Fred MacMurray, Jane Wyman, Michael Callan, Deborah Walley, Jessie Royce Landis
  • Directors: James Neilson
  • Writers: Bill Walsh
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Walt Disney Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: February 3, 2004
  • Run Time: 132 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000DZ3EE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,909 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Bon Voyage!" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Comic adventure awaits the Willard family when Harry (Fred MacMurray) packs up the wife and kids and sets sail on a long-awaited "dream" vacation to romantic France. However, their trip includes some unforeseen adventures: his wife Katie (Jane Wyman) is pursued by a Hungarian admirer; his daughter Amy (Deborah Walley) meets a brash young playboy; and Harry himself gets hopelessly lost on a tour of the Paris sewer system! Join the Willards for a hilarious, whirlwind trip they'll never forget!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars DVD vs VHS March 7, 2004
I have been familiar with this film since I worked for Disney in 16mm film distribution in the 1970s. I started at Disney after just coming back from Europe, so the French settings were nice to revisit.
I am very familiar with the various negatives of this film. I agree with several reviewers that a DVD should contain the best possible picture and sound element. It should also present the film in its original, projected aspect ratio, which for BON VOYAGE was 1:85.1 (Academy 'flat') which gives the film a slight, rectangular image. However, full frame, 4 by 3 transfers of 1:85x1 pictures are not necessarily all that bad. You loose a little picture on the sides, but not really that much. Some work could have been done on color correcting, although the DVD's 'look' exactly matches the projected film.
I also agree that a few 'extras' would have been nice, even just the theatrical trailer. Walt Disney filmed 'everything' to do with his studio's product, so there must be a good amount of 'extras' for BON VOYAGE in the Disney film vaults. Why aren't they included?
Anyway, it's still nice to have this some-what overlong film back on the market. I grabbed a copy at BestBuy as soon as I spotted it. I have always felt that it was about 20 minutes too long, and that it incorporated two scenes (Fred McMurray and the French prostitute in Paris, and the attempted extortion of son Elliot on the Riviera) that should not have been in the script. The film might have done better with its intended audience. Tommy Kirk's performance as Elliot, however, is a treasure; he was a very polished actor, and gave wonderful comic relief it wasn't 'mugging' but was built solely out of his character.
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30 of 37 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Oh, Disney! Disney! Why do you stab me in the heart so often?
This company seems to think that avoiding black little bars at the top and bottom of 4:3 television screens makes families happy and content. Why not consider us grownups instead, who are very saddened indeed to watch movies like this with the sides cut off?
Besides, what child or teenager today would tolerate viewing this movie anyhow, cropped or in letterbox format? This is definitely a film for people BORN in the fifties and sixties. Yes, it's overlong! Yes, it's corny a lot of the time! Yes, it's often dull and even boring! And yes, I still enjoy it for all its faults! But I would be ten times happier if Disney had given me this film on DVD in the correct aspect ratio of 1.78:1 - with anamorphic enhancement, of course! WHEN WILL THEY LEARN?
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SS UNITED STATES December 1, 2003
The real star of this movie was the old ocean liner SS UNITED STATES. Parts of the film were shot aboard this great ship [...] This is another Disney family film in the tradition of the Swiss Family Robinson & That Darn Cat. A bit dated for modern kiddies but this film was Disney's most UNDER-RATED film.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disney's "Adult Film" Still Lots of Family Fun December 20, 2009
If the Great Recession has your family contemplating a stay-cation, you could do a lot worse than to include this movie as a vicarious escape. No horrible exchange rates, no jet lag, no language barriers, and no big bills. But a very pleasant time true to the Disney formula...with a few surprising instances of envelope-pushing, at least for Disney of the early sixties.

What other reviewers haven't noted is that this is one of Disney's early attempts to broaden the Disney franchise to encompass a more "adult" audience. Hence, Fred MacMurray's encounter with a prostitute (in which he nonetheless preaches midwestern American values), Disney's historic first-use of profanity ("...none of you know the first damn thing about love!"), and a surprising quantity of booze (again, surprising for Disney of that era).

For Disney buffs who may recall how Walt once expressed frustration that he couldn't make a film like Alfred Hitchcock, this movie is a very public reminder that there was a time when the classic Disney film franchise as we know it today, was not a foregone conclusion. The founder himself fostered hopes that things would turn out a little differently.

As other reviewers have noted, it's a bit on the long side, but my family never found its attention wandering. Yeah, if you're looking to critique a movie, it could be shorter and it could have benefited from a rewrite. But if you're just looking to enjoy an old family-friendly Disney film, you probably won't be disappointed. And when it's all over, you'll probably end up muttering something about how it's better than most most movies or TV shows made these days.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Was this trip necessary? May 8, 2006
Draggy family comedy about Americans on vacation abroad wasn't anywhere near top-drawer Disney when it was first released back in 1962--trite, unfunny and decidely kid-unfriendly with its tiresome bickering parents, dreary teen romance subplots and several bizarre un-Disneylike scenes involving drunkeness, a bidet, a French hooker, public urination and even a few mild four-letter words.

It doesn't play any better today in an uncorrected color DVD transfer that frequently makes MacMurray, Wyman and other cast members look like corpses.

One of the biggest live action misfires to be personally overseen by Walt Disney, this DVD edition (with no extras) is a bum trip. Stay home.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Period piece worth a look
OK, so I chose this movie mostly to see the footage shot on the SS United States, an ocean liner launched in 1952 that is one of this nation's truly great nautical achievements and... Read more
Published 18 days ago by C. Ford
5.0 out of 5 stars Walt Disney movie Bon Voyage
early 1960 decade views of France, produced by Walt Disney company.
Published 25 days ago by MT
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your money on this
It was not a family movie. We ended up HATING it and quit halfway through. Don't waste your money on this.
Published 2 months ago by roy rogers
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
love this movie
Published 2 months ago by June E. Allen
4.0 out of 5 stars A great movie for looking back at what vacations in Europe ...
A great movie for looking back at what vacations in Europe were like in the 60s. Tho I had heard that the real star was the great ocean liner the SS United States I was... Read more
Published 2 months ago by HistoryShowsUs
5.0 out of 5 stars It was an awesome purchase!
It was an awesome purchase!
Published 3 months ago by Scott
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 3 months ago by Marleen Schlottman
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't watch this ... especially with kids
I thought this would be a fun movie to watch with my kids, ages 10, 6, and 4. It's not your typical Disney flick, it had language in it, the main themes were the attempt to seduce... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Happyasamom
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Family Movie
Great adventure, and comedy with some evolving romances. Has great comedy relief, with just good ole fun adventure. Read more
Published 3 months ago by RPF
1.0 out of 5 stars Dont waste your time!
Dont waste your time! Bad family movie, bad morals, ect. I would give it zero stars if I could, but I cant.
Published 4 months ago by Chris
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