Monkeys, Go Home!
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It is fair to say that this movie "mainly" works because of the four monkeys involved. The film is quite funny at times with the story ever innocent and delightful. Only the Disney team can dream up a plot involving NASA trained monkeys to work on an olive farm in small town France! The film was shot at the Disney Studios but still looks, sounds and feels great. This is mainly thanks to matte artist Peter Ellenshaw and the Sherman Brothers song writing team for the nicely sounding "Joire de Vivre". Mauice Chevalier is ever upbeat and smiling. This was his last movie appearance but he did come out of retirement to sing the opening credits song for The Aristocats. Dean Jones is fine in this movie...his style seems to suit this type of light Disney comedy. If you love family movies, this will definitely suit...and the kids will love it to. If you are a Disney fan...then this is a must.
Note that there are no extra or bonus features on this DVD but for the price you will be getting a fun Disney film.
THE STORY - An American farmer named Hank (Dean Jones) inherits a big farm when his Uncle passes away, but it is in the Provence region of France. Upon crossing the ocean and inspecting the farm in person, the local easygoing priest warns him that a farm of this size cannot be run without enough employees or family members. In the meantime he sends Maria to help set the farmhouse straight, and of course they begin to fall in love. Hank decides to operate the farm himself, but local labor costs are outrageous so Hank trains a group of monkeys to pick the olives and infuriates the locals who have been scheming to get him. First is the rival for Maria, but worse is a local land buyer who wants the farm to resell for a profit. He sabotages Hank a few times. Even the labor union is after him trying to initiate a strike, and he better think fast if he is to keep ahead of them and win the girl.
BEHIND THE SCENES & TRIVIA: Maurice Chevalier returns to Disney to star and sing as Father Sylvian. He also appeared in "In Search of the Castaways" and sung the title song in "The Aristocats". The studio's famous composers, the Sherman brothers, wrote his song in the movie, "Joie de Vivre". The movie poster promoting the film had a tagline that said, "L'aughter, L'amour, and le monkey business".Read more ›
Hank Dussard (Jones) has inherited a small farm in France with 480 olive trees. In typical American fashion, Dussard believes that he can make a decent living from so many olive trees. In a Disney movie nothing is ever simple, and it turns out that the cost of labor makes olive farming an expensive proposition. Most people who pick olives for a living use their large families to do so. Jones, a bachelor, has no such advantage, though local priest Father Sylvain (Maurice Chevalier, in his last movie appearance) keeps trying to fix him up with local beauty Maria Riserau (Yvette Mimieux, in one of her earliest roles).
Dussard was in the United States Air Force, where he trained monkeys for space flight. Now the monkeys have been retired as the United States has changed to manned space missions. Dussard was able to purchase the monkeys from the Air Force with the intent of using them to pick olives. The scene is set for a series of confrontations between a pair of local socialist leaders and Dussard.
I found the funniest portions of the movie to be in the last half hour. Up to that point there were a few humorous scenes, but the real laughs are near the end. This movie was relatively lightweight even by Disney standards, and I suspect this movie had a low budget. I personally consider this movie family friendly though at least one other reviewer has objected to a scene early in the movie where the butcher, who had romantic aspirations, kissed Maria without her consent.Read more ›
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I love me some old Disney movies. The seller was super fast and each movie was correct and undamaged. Very happy customerPublished 18 hours ago by Gayle Wilson
great film...brought back lots of memory's from my childhood, good clean fun for the whole family!Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
i saw this back in the 60s as a kid and loved it it was on 2 years in a row then i never saw it again till i looked it up on amazon and they had it and i got it its a good kids... Read morePublished 2 months ago by pauls
Just as I remembered this movie as a child! Thanks. Got it quick too.Published 11 months ago by ANNA WARNER