Goldrush: A Real Life Alaskan Adventure
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Screen favorite Alyssa Milano (TV's CHARMED, MELROSE PLACE) stars as a spirited young woman determined to strike it rich in the Great Alaskan Gold Rush! Frances "Fizzy" Fitz (Milano) is a turn-of-the-century New Yorker who yearns to trade her high-society life for a rough-and-tumble adventure in the rugged wilds of Alaska! In order to get there, however, Fizzy needs the help of P.T. Madison (Bruce Campbell, FROM DUSK TILL DAWN 2), a charming con artist who nearly turns the entire venture into a complete disaster! An inspirational and highly entertaining story everyone will love -- you'll cheer for Fizzy as she overcomes impossible odds to make her dreams come true!
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Anyway, as I'm the head of a Disney DVD fan campaign to get un-release Disney films and shows on DVD (OPEN VAULT DISNEY), I was of course very happy when I first heard that this new "Generations Collection" was being created. I very much hope and want to see it become more then it is right now, and hope we see more selections available in the months to come.
As this is the first film in this new collection I've had the chance to buy, it will serve as my review for the whole collection to date. I'll first talk about the DVD's themselves, and then about this film in particular.
The DVD, similar to the first few waves of the great Warner Archive DVD's, came in very simple packaging with a themed background that text and images for whatever the film in question is can be placed on top of. On the back and the spine, it clearly states that it is a DVD-R formatted disc. The top of the back reads:
"Disney opens the archives to present a collectable series of films that once captured the hearts of devoted fans everywhere. Experience the magic of the Disney Generations Collection - warm, wonderful classics that will delight audiences of all ages - available for the first time ever on DVD!"
I'm guessing that tag line is on the backs of all of these films, but as stated already, I have only been able to pick this one up so far. Once I put the disc in, it went straight to the main menu screen. The main menu screen was very simple, using the same blue background the DVD cover uses, having the "Disney Generations Collection" logo on top with a big "PLAY" in the center. There are no scene selections (which is unfortunate), however it does have English subtitles for the hearing impaired. It is in it's original full screen presentation and the back cover suggests that it has been digital mastered. The film, while maybe not the same as a modern film on Blu Ray, still looks very stunning, with very little signs of wear or tear to it (I need to make it known, I played this in a Blu Ray player, on a HDTV, so I have no idea what it looks like in a normal DVD player on a normal tv), and the audio sounded great. Amazon and Disney did a great job on this title bring it to DVD. There are no bonus features, but that is to be expected with a title in a collection like this. Once you hit the "PLAY" button on the main menu screen, it goes into the legal message Hollywood films carry with them about copyright infringement and then goes right into the film.
The film itself was good. I don't recall ever watching this one before, even when it first debuted in early 1998 on the "Wonderful World of Disney," so it was brand new for me. The film very much feels like a late 1990's tv movie, but one of the better ones. Some of the writing is cheesy, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. The biggest issue I had with this story is it kind of glosses over a lot of moments and it can at times get easy to get confused by it. Alyssa Milano however as the star, makes up for a lot of the weaker parts of the story and easily gets you settled into the new scene. Co-star Bruce Campbell on the other hand, while he has moments of greatness, wasn't as good in this one. Still, most families will find much to enjoy about this one and the theme of following your dreams is will resonate in the hearts of most Disney fans.
I recommended this film to any one who is a Disney fan or enjoys good Family Entertainment. Don't forget to check out the currently three other titles (Amy,Student Exchange,Fuzzbucket) in this new collection as well!
UPDATE: The "Generations Collection" has added two new titles: Child of Glass and The Waltz King, both I have to fully recommended with this film!