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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Best of the "Anthology" Films (with one of Animation's Greatest Sequences Thrown In for Good Measure!)
THE THREE CABELLEROS was Disney's 2nd foray into the world of Latin America during World War II. Working alongside the State Department to help foster goodwill in the Western hemisphere (and using Disney's iconic characters to help promote American values), the film is a huge improvement over the previous venture, SALUDOS AMIGOS. And while it may not tell a story, per...
Published on July 6, 2005

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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Love the movie, hate the censorship
I am a HUGE fan of this movie, but this DVD (as well as the Saludos Amigos, Melody Time, and Make Mine Music DVDs) seriously panders to the soccer-mom crowd. Smoking (from Goofy in Saludos, and an innocent bystander in Caballeros) is "digitally altered" (i.e. censored), while Jose Carioca (who is in both movies) still HAS his cigar!

If Disney had wanted to...
Published on February 28, 2007 by BJ Wanlund


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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Best of the "Anthology" Films (with one of Animation's Greatest Sequences Thrown In for Good Measure!), July 6, 2005
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
THE THREE CABELLEROS was Disney's 2nd foray into the world of Latin America during World War II. Working alongside the State Department to help foster goodwill in the Western hemisphere (and using Disney's iconic characters to help promote American values), the film is a huge improvement over the previous venture, SALUDOS AMIGOS. And while it may not tell a story, per se, the film introduced several songs that have gone on to become classics, contains several rousing moments, features some fun short subjects, all in a nicely diverting package film.

The film itself is supposedly set on Donald's birthday (here we find he was born on Friday 13th). From his many friends in Latin America (Donald was far more popular south of the border than his more even-tempered costars), he has received a box of presents, and the first present he opens is a movie projector and some movies. (Not very original, but it works.) After some trouble with the projector, Donald sits down to watch the show.

Sterling Holloway (a famous Disney voice, having appeared in films from DUMBO all the way to THE JUNGLE BOOK) narrates the story of Pablo the Penguin. Pablo is cold so he decides to float to a warmer climate. The story is no great shakes, but it cute and some of the stylized maps as he floats up the South American coast are quite nice.

A narrator introduces Donald to other birds of South America, including the Aracuan, one of Donald's costars in the "Blame it on the Samba" section of MELODY TIME. After some craziness with the Aracuan, we are told the story of the little Gauchito who went hunting and ended up with a flying burrito. A cute story, with a great narrator, plus several funny sight gags as the narrator reminds himself of the tale he is telling. The characters were popular enough that Disney began working on a (never released) sequel.

Joe Carioca, a Brazillian parrot, sings the beauty of "Baia," just one of the big hits from the movie, and takes Donald to the beautiful, magical country. They journey on a train through a sequence designed by the amazing Mary Blair, one of the few Disney inspirational artists to take the trip to South America with Walt to research the subject. Her highly stylized designs were a favorite with Disney, much to the chagrin of animators who had to bring the thing to life.

Interaction with human costars begins here, as Aurora Miranda and company sing a tune as Donald and Joe fight for her affections. Considering the film was released in 1945, the blend of animation and live action is quite seamless and very impressive.

The highlight of the film is the title number, "The Three Caballeros," which animator Ward Kimball turned into a tour de force of non sequitirs, sight gags, and amazing silliness. Throughout the song, as Panchito the Rooster sings and dances, Donald is constantly frustrated at his own lack of ability, and the gags pile on one after another. Truly a masterpiece of animation, and one of Kimball's most highly regarded works.

The rest of the movie is a travelogue through Mexico, with some great period film (shot by Disney animators on their goodwill tour), more great music ("You Belong to My Heart" was another big hit from the film), and a wonderful expression of Christmas celebrations highlighted by the first appearence (on film) of Mary Blair's distinctive "children" characters. (These would go on to be the stars of one of Disney's most popular and enduring attractions, "It's a Small World," also designed by Blair.)

All in all, a delightful period piece featuring some outstanding animation by the Disney artists, and the wonderful design work of Mary Blair. If you are a fan of Disney's earlier films (SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO) or the later output (ALADDIN, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST), you may want to skip this one. It's not story driven, is not a true musical, and feature some highly surreal animation toward the grand finale.

For true Disneyphiles, this is a MUST for your collection.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars when i was a kid..., December 5, 2004
I found that a lot of the reviews here say that this movie isn't for children. But as a child I LOVED this movie. I don't know why, but I remember watching this movie at least 5 times a week. And I wasn't an odd child at all, since I loved all the other Disney classics, such as Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, Snow White, etc. But for some reason this one Disney movie was especially appealing to me.

As a kid, I had the attention span for this movie. And I was probably around 3 or 4 when this was my favorite movie.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Love the movie, hate the censorship, February 28, 2007
By 
BJ Wanlund (In the Sticks) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
I am a HUGE fan of this movie, but this DVD (as well as the Saludos Amigos, Melody Time, and Make Mine Music DVDs) seriously panders to the soccer-mom crowd. Smoking (from Goofy in Saludos, and an innocent bystander in Caballeros) is "digitally altered" (i.e. censored), while Jose Carioca (who is in both movies) still HAS his cigar!

If Disney had wanted to censor smoking, they should have "digitally altered" Jose Carioca's cigar! I wouldn't be complaining about it if they'd been equal-opportunity butchers (and even then I'd be complaining).

Please Disney, since you're putting the Three Caballeros into the place once occupied by El Rio Del Tiempo, PLEASE re-release this on DVD and PLEASE kill the butchering!!

BJ
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Los Tres Caballeros is a masterpiece!, April 27, 2004
By 
T.E. (New Mexico,USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
Wow. What can I say? I just recently viewed this movie and I loved it. Wasn't so fond of the two cartoon shorts as much ("The Cold-Blooded Penguin and the Flying Gauchito" ),but the rest of this movie rocks!
Donald receives gifts from his best friends in Latin America. Thrilled,Donald experiences South American life first hand,taking trips from Brazil to Mexico with his pals Jose Carioca and Panchito.
It's one surreal,psychadelic and funny movie. I really liked it a lot,the live scenes were pretty good,and the music was swinging. Being 21,it's unbelieveable for me to like music this old,but I loved it and I'm sure you will,too. Being a Hispanic-American myself,this movie also made me see the beauty of my culture and made me proud of my roots.
I recommend this for any Disney fan. These 3 amigos will have you loving them the moment you watch it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Outrageous Imagination!, February 20, 2004
By 
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
This is by far the best of the Walt Disney anthology films. Appreciators of special effects animation will be dazzled and those who enjoy a rollicking good time (and who doesn't) will be more than sated.
What starts as an above average anthology suddenly turns into an almost psychedelic experience with the blending of live-action and other effects in the last third of the film. As soon as Jose Carioca shows up, the outrageous fun begins with the song "Baia" and a pop up book that opens onto a live-action street. Soon after, Donald begins acting like a mad stalker, chasing after every woman he sees. Before you know it colors, confetti and characters are sprouting from all over the place during the song "You Belong To My Heart". If it sounds like pandemonium, that because it is, but it's delightful.
Sadly the picture quality is not up to par with other Disney releases. This is a film that is in real need for digital restoration, but don't let that small irritation keep you from experiencing Disney's most outrageous film ever.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Three Psychedellos, January 22, 2004
By 
E. Nielsen (Orange County, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
I admit it, this strange brew from down deep in the Disney vault isn't for everyone. But it just might be for you. It's probably my favorite from Walt's studios and it's definitely my youngest daughter's favorite. I'll also admit that it lacks a coherency of tone in that it starts off much like other cobbled-together movies from that time period (connecting shorter projects together to make something "move-length"). But about a third of the way through, true Disney magic starts to happen, and you get tossed through a 40's Latin American vortex that almost has to be the product of some insanely creative young animators/musicians/actors/set designers, etc. given free reign of a studio, along with perhaps some copious quantities of agave plant serum. When an artform is being maxed-out by people at the prime of their powers, one thing you always feel is that you're being bowled over by hundreds and thousands of IDEAS, too many to absorb in 1 or 100 sittings. One gets the same feeling from, say, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. If the idea of being taken on a crazy trip that could delight a 75-year-old and a 5-year-old equally appeals to you, then give this one a look. As far as I'm aware, getting high this way is legal. [There is a segment in Melody Time called The Rhythm of the Samba that feels like it could've been lifted straight out of this movie - and it's another wild-paced masterpiece.]
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spanish teacher's friend, September 11, 1999
By 
Christine Grodt (Grand Junction, CO) - See all my reviews
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Any elementary Spanish teacher who has ever had to teach children shortly before a vacation begins will love this video. Lesson plans can be structured to use this video to teach geography, social studies, music, and some Spanish vocabulary, and it will keep the kids attention on a difficult day, as no serious travelogue will do! Kids love it, and can learn from it.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A favorite from Disney, but too many ads., May 27, 2000
By 
Marc (Ann Arbor, MI) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
For many Disney may mean quality family entertainment, but after purchasing The Three Caballeros on "Disney DVD" it also means watching a string of ads. Skipping the ads is a painful process that I shouldn't have to go through. Each ad must be skipped over, there is no way to just put in the disk and start watching the film. Each time the disk is played the ads will play as well. After paying for the disk why should I have to watch ads, I just want to watch the movie. The advertising doesn't seem to lower the price of the product. In my opinion this tarnishes an otherwise good film and I hope Disney tries to be a little more consumer friendly with its future releases.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic! One of Disney's Overlooked Masterpieces!, April 2, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
Donald Duck stars in this masterpiece with a combination of animation and live action. This films co-stars Jose (or Joe) Carioca, who also appeared in SALUDOS AMIGOS (1943) and MELODY TIME (1945), and an all new character, Panchito. The film is about Donald getting birthday gifts from his friends in Latin America (his birthday in the film is Friday the 13th, although it's really June 9th!). We see short stories including "The Cold-Blooded Penguin" and "The Flying Gauchito", like most Disney films of the time. I never really like this film as a kid, but now it's one of my favorite animated films (and in general). You won't regret buying this DVD! It also includes complete bonus cartoons: "Donald's Fountain of Youth" (1953), and "Pueblo Pluto" (1949).
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disney's Overlooked Masterpiece, August 19, 2000
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This review is from: The Three Caballeros (DVD)
The Three Caballeros is Disney's most overlooked masterpiece. The combination of live action and animation in the "Baia" segment of this film is definitely among Disney's best. The imaginative morphing between the dancers and the fighting cocks rivals if not surpasses any to be found in Fantasia. Best of all, it's a very pleasant film to watch or listen to and suitable for the whole family, missing the obligatory death in the first ten minutes of the film that most Disney movies have.
From a technical standpoint, this is a well-done DVD. They used an extremely well-preserved print to make it from, rather than simply digitizing the VHS tape, which looks terrible on a big screen tv. They also resisted the urge to "improve" the original soundtrack, further adding to the vintage charm of this picture.
All in all, I'm very happy to be able to see this movie in its original form and will be watching it again whenever I need a lift.
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The Three Caballeros
The Three Caballeros by Norman Ferguson (DVD - 2000)
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