Next up is not only a blogger but also a childhood friend of mine, Phoebe from Starry Traveler’s Road with her review of Anastasia! This movie is one of my faves also. However, if you haven’t been to her blog, she posts pretty casually but she has posts on being a mom of a newborn, otome reviews and recently, some movie reviews called Movies with BunBun segment. For those who don’t know, we’re also starting up a new collab segment that will be here soon. We’re wrapping up some preparation work and it’ll be a food segment. Remember to head over and check out her blog after you’re done here.
Take it away, Phoebe!
Movies with Bun Bun: Anastasia (1997)
Hello everyone! Big thank yous to Tranquil Dreams and Drew for hosting the Ultimate 90s Blogathon! The Ultimate 80s Blogathon was so much fun that I decided to give movie reviews another try!
Looking back, I never quite understood why I have always had a keen interest in studying royal history since I was young. Unlike some people, I never dreamt to be a princess though it is a fact that I have always wanted to be a historian. The Russian royal family was one of the three families that I studied as a hobby. While powerful rulers like Catherine the Great fascinated me, the whole mystery surrounding Tsar Nicolas II’s family during the Russian Revolution mystified me, especially when the news revealed two bodies were missing in an excavation all the way back in 1991. (For those who do not know, the whole family and their servants’ bodies are all accounted for in 2009.)
First thing that came to my mind was: who is this mysterious Grand Duchess Anastasia? The more that I read about her, the more I found that she was quite interesting. When this animated movie came out, I wondered how Anastasia would be portrayed and how her ‘story’ would unfold if she managed to escape from captivity. Anyway, enough rambling and on with the review.
The last surviving child of the Russian Royal Family joins two con men to reunite with her grandmother, the Dowager Empress, while the undead Rasputin seeks her death. – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0118617/
There was a lot of things that I loved about this movie as I felt back then that Disney’s animation started to go downhill since Beauty and the Beast. I was particularly fond of Anastasia’s graphics and storyline. The characters are very well drawn and developed though I always wished Pooka the dog would appear more often. The dialogues and bantering between characters, especially Anastasia and Dimitri, were very entertaining. As a historian who understands this is a fictional movie, I cannot say that I imagined that Anastasia would end up in Paris, the City of Love, out of all the places in the world to reunite with her grandmother; but hey, there must be some mushy romance thrown somewhere in the story! The locations are so well illustrated that I really want to see them for myself, especially the Catherine Palace! Music was amazing to the point that I owned the soundtrack and often played Once Upon a December, Journey to the Past, Learn to Do It and At the Beginning on repeat. (At the Beginning was chosen as one of the songs played at my wedding.)
Fast forward a few years and boom! My daughter, bun bun, appeared. I am still trying to figure out bun bun’s opinion on this movie as it took us around 5 times before we managed to finish the movie. Unlike An American Tail from the last Blogathon, she was more interested in running around, pressing buttons on my keyboard, climbing on furniture and testing my patience. The only things that caught her attention was Anastasia’s dog, Pooka, and the faster songs like A Rumor in St. Petersburg. I thought the soothing and haunting melodies like Once Upon a December would appeal to her as I often sang them to her; but no, she danced to Rasputin’s In the Dark of the Night! It is obvious that our taste in music differs and she is ready to party as if she is 18 even though she is only a toddler, but we have one thing in common: we both love Pooka!
Anyway, I asked myself what I should do when I reintroduce this movie to an older bun bun. Should I let her see this movie only as an animated movie or should I try to explain the real person/history behind the fictional movie? What do you think?
Thanks to Phoebe for a wonderful write-up on Anastasia!
Remember to head over to Drew’s Movie Reviews tomorrow for the next review in the blogathon!