Highlights: I really do think that Bambi is a work of art. The animation is beautiful, and I think extremely good for its time. Nature and the changing seasons come off really nicely. And it’s cute – little Thumper and Flower just make you say “awww!” And when they grow up and start to fall in love, that’s a great scene too. It’s also emotionally moving when the whole forest is on fire and you realize the impact that humans are having on nature.
Low points: While enjoyable, I don’t find Bambi super entertaining. It’s not one that I can watch over and over again because it’s not very plot driven – basically just the first year of Bambi’s life.
Music: It’s not your typical big song movie, with most of the tunes being background and underscore. But it’s a really pretty score, and “Little April Showers” is a song that shines. It’s one of the best scenes in the movie, watching the rain falling and the seasons changing while this beautiful music plays.
Villain rating: If you’re looking for a main villain I guess you could say it’s the man that shoots Bambi’s mother – but really, it’s all humans and how they treat nature, I think. We know almost nothing about him, but we’re left feeling he’s the bad guy for killing her. However, there are tons of people that do hunt for both food and for fun. Personally, I can’t fathom how anyone would find pleasure in shooting innocent animals. But there are many people that do, people who are often very good people. So the villain is very ambiguous here, especially if you start to think about it.
Fun fact: In order to create the realistic animation of exactly how a deer moves, they brought a live deer into the animation studio for the animators to observe and draw.
Where in the World: You won’t find a lot of tribute to Bambi in Disney World, which is a little surprising considering how much of a classic it is. But I guess that because it’s so realistic it doesn’t always fit in with the fantasy themeing in so much of the parks. There are no rides, restaurants, or anything really. Rumor has it that Thumper has occasionally been seen around the parks, and there’s a Bambi topiary at Epcot during the May/June Flower and Garden Festival, but otherwise not much. Even though Animal Kingdom seems to be focused more on Africa/Asia, I’m thinking they could tie Bambi in somewhere there.
My personal rating: I give Bambi a 6.5 out of 10. I really respect it for what it is, and I enjoy it on occasion, but it’s not a super highlight for me personally.