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Walt Disney Legacy Collection - True Life Adventures, Vol. 2 (1953)

Winston Hibler , James Algar  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

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Walt Disney Legacy Collection - True Life Adventures,  Vol. 2 + Walt Disney Legacy Collection - True Life Adventures,  Vol. 3 + Walt Disney Legacy Collection - True Life Adventures,  Vol. 4
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Product Details

  • Actors: Winston Hibler
  • Directors: James Algar
  • Writers: Winston Hibler, James Algar, Ted Sears
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Buena Vista Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: December 5, 2006
  • Run Time: 169 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000I2J6O6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #120,856 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Walt Disney Legacy Collection - True Life Adventures, Vol. 2" on IMDb

Special Features

Introduction By Roy E. Disney

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Experience the wonder of Walt Disney's groundbreaking nature series for the first time on DVD! These acclaimed stories, fully restored to their original beauty, offer previously unseen looks into the magical world of our animal friends. Enjoy a collection of Disney's award-winning TRUE-LIFE ADVENTURES, including "The Living Desert," and the very first film, "Seal Island." It's a classic collection of animal adventures your whole family will treasure.

There was a time when Walt Disney produced mesmerizing nature films for family audiences. Walt Disney Legacy Collection: True Life Adventures, Vol. 2 reaches deep into the studio's vaults to pull together a selection of those remarkable little movies, a television staple for baby boomers who watched Disney's variously-titled series in the late 1950s and '60s.

Listen to our interview
with director emeritus
Roy E. Disney
Basically, teams of roving cinematographers and other technicians were sent into the field, working under the general guidance of a well-researched script, a director, production group, etc. Ingenious editing, creative uses of music, and even touches of animation resulted in marvelous pieces such as the ones in this collection. Among the six titles here are "Living Desert," set in the American southwest; "Vanishing Prairie," an overview of what were once endless grasslands between the mountainous west and the full forests east of the Mississippi; and "Seal Island," shot on a remote Alaskan island. Nature programs are, of course, plentiful on contemporary television. But the Disney shows were unique at the time for applying high cinematic standards (the Technicolor on "Islands of the Sea," set in the Galapagos, is something to see) to the task of filming lizards, road runners, sandstorms, and exotic flowers. These programs are also tailor-made for young audiences. The more harrowing sequences of predators stalking their lunch, say, or seal pups getting separated from their mothers aren't censored, but they are softened in the editor's room and via anthropomorphic narration. True Life Adventures stands up today as good family viewing, though they are also fodder for nostalgia for viewers of a certain age. --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
67 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Collecton of Old Disney Nature Films February 13, 2007
These nature films, if you could find them at all, were previously only on VHS. I had already seen two of the films on the set on VHS, "The Vanishing Prairie" and "The Living Desert", and I was amazed how these old films from the 50's had such good cinematography considering the times. Now on DVD, these films have been cleaned up even more, and the video is not hard on the eyesight at all. 30 years before the Discovery Channel, it is truly amazing to see what Disney was doing in the realm of nature films.

"Seal Island", produced in 1949, is known as Disney's first nature documentary and runs 26 minutes. It studies animal life on Seal Island, which is a small island in the Bering Sea. The life cycle of the seals is the dominant theme, of course, although the documentary talks about the other animal residents of the island too. Because it was Disney's first attempt at a nature documentary, it is awkward at spots. It tends to get very slow at one point, and then picks up the tempo with a bloody battle between feuding male seals fighting for dominance that tends to be a bit graphic.

"The Living Desert" won the Academy Award for Best Feature Documentary in 1953, and its theme is a day in the wildlife of the American desert southwest. On the humorous side, the best scene involves a couple of square-dancing scorpions, and on the dramatic side the best scene is probably a fight between a tarantula and a wasp. The commentary is well done, but some people might find it just a bit too jokey at points. It runs 70 minutes.

"The Vanishing Prairie" also won the Academy Award for Best Feature Documentary in 1954 and runs 71 minutes. Again, the photography is excellent, but the narration is depressing and the conclusions no longer true.
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49 of 56 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
At least two of the films, Living Desert and Vanishing Prairie, are full length and were Academy Award winners. At the time(1950's) nature photography was quite difficult with huge, heavy, bulky cameras, long before the National Geographic channel or Animal Planet. So these films are literally the ground floor of nature photography. I am expecting a wonderful set, restoring the original color and sound. When I saw them in the 70's the color had already metamorphed into green skies, for example. Disney has promised us a full restoration. Do you remember seeing the tarantula and the birth of a buffalo calf? Through it all we have the wonderful humor of Winston Hibler's narration. I can't wait!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another fine Disney Classic March 14, 2007
These DVDs are incredible! Just as I remember as a child. The digital restoration is beautifully done...Highly recommend that these be purchased by Disney lovers and families looking for good old wholesome entertainment.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Big Surprise April 18, 2007
I teach a college class in popular culture. We were reading a book on Walt Disney, and I bought True Life Adventures just to show to the class. I wasn't expecting to watch it for fun. What a mistake. This is fantastic. Today we have Animal Planet and all the other educational networks, but the Disney documentaries are just so much better from an entertainment standpoint. The scenery just brings oohs and aahs, and the humor and plotting, while maybe annoying to the scientific-minded, just make the stories flow.

What I really liked was you could watch The Vanishing Prairie, then on Disc 2 there is the segment of Disney's Wonderful World of Color, where you can see how he used the TV show to market the movie, then the Filmmakers Journal where you get some great behind the scenes footage on how the film was made. (Wait till you see the snow-mobile!)

I bought this for class. I'm getting all the others in the series for fun.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disney True Adventure August 24, 2007
Could you rate it a 10 or 100. Who couldn't love Disney's True Adventures. Yes, there is even a whole channel for animal adventures now, but they were the first--and they were the best. They are pack in a great package; durable and imaginative. The added interviews and backstage scenes are great. I can remember seeing them on their program (in black and white) when I was in first grade. They are wonderful. It was a treat to learn about the couple who filmed them too. Spending years and years filming things they thought was funny or interesting. Then bringing them back and someone putting them together into a story that is loved forever. I have all four of them. And we watch them over and over.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Volume 2 is the Best! February 14, 2011
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If you only buy one of the four volumes of the Disney nature films, get volume two. It has the best extras on it with a very good documentary about the series of films as a whole and the particular films on this two disc set are great examples of the series. These are unique nature documentaries and much more entertaining than much of what you'll see on the Discovery Channel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Living Desert February 19, 2012
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This Disney movie has been a favorite for years since I first saw it on the big screen. This packaged set covers more of Disney's True Life adventures and the originals were master pieces. Because of their conversation to DVD format, I think some of the original punch is missing, especially the color quality as seen on my current home TV. I will continue to use these segments in my teaching as some good points are made but the kids are less attentive than they used to be for movies of this length. I do appreciate Amazon'a willingness to carry items in this category as I doubted that old Disney movies are huge money makers.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This DVD was so much fun to watch
This DVD was so much fun to watch. You would get a feeling like you really were out in the wilderness on an adventure.
Published 1 month ago by Vincent Doraz
4.0 out of 5 stars Good quality.
Just as I remembered the films growing up. Good quality.
Published 2 months ago by lynn brock
5.0 out of 5 stars A must see if you recall these from your youth! Disney is the best!
I enjoyed reliving the experiences and found them to be as entertaining as the Nature movie released annually on a Earth Day. Read more
Published 5 months ago by BRM
5.0 out of 5 stars we've been looking for these for a long time.
My wife and I got the VHS tapes of the True Life Adventures for our kids when they were little. They loved those old films. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Dangerous Dan
5.0 out of 5 stars Great classic Disney!
These feature films are excellent! Watched these as a kid and will share them with the grand kids. So glad they are now available on dvd
Published 12 months ago by C. Boehm-Sullivan
5.0 out of 5 stars Walt Disney Legacy - True Life Adventures
This is probably most appropriate for Elementary through Middle School grades, however, my high school students were fascinated with the photography and the story lines. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Karen A. Tackitt
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Scenery
Me and my family fell in love with these shows when I was a kid..Believe me that was a long time ago.
Published 22 months ago by pat
5.0 out of 5 stars I am so glad
I am so glad that I came across this Disney DVD. I only need to purchase two more like this and I will have the set. But I need the money first. Read more
Published 22 months ago by nb
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful World of Learning
I knew the video would be good from my childhood memory but I loved watching my students be equally enthralled by the video. Read more
Published on October 5, 2012 by Lizzie
1.0 out of 5 stars Natures Strangest Creatures
Al and Elma Millotte spent some months at my father's animal reserve on Queensland's Gold Coast in 1955... Read more
Published on December 26, 2011 by S. J. Fleay
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