‘The Little Mermaid’ Anniversary Edition in 4K

Category: Blu-ray's and DVD's

It’s hard to believe but it’s been 30 years since Ariel was introduced to audiences. Now, for the 30thanniversary edition (part of the Walt Disney Signature Collection) of The Little Mermaid, viewers get the opportunity to finally view the adored movie on 4K Ultra HD. And believe me, it does make a difference.

I just finished watching the Blu-ray disc the studio sent for review. It was spectacular with plenty of wonderful bonus features. Then, lo and behold, they sent the 4K Combo Pack so I watched it again. (Yes, I do watch the Disney films over and over and over.) I know Blu-ray is a step above DVD and 4K Ultra HD is a giant leap above Blu-ray.

What I discovered by viewing this film on 4K is that the colors are spectacular. Everything jumps right out of the screen. The underwater scenes feel as though you are in the ocean. Not only are the colors more spectacular, it seems like the lines are sharper and the audio is definitely clearer. Although the Blu-ray version is wonderful, when you watch a movie, especially an animated one, on 4K Ultra HD, you’ll feel like technology is definitely on the side of viewers. There is a larger color spectrum, which is evident from the first scene.

The 4K disc contains only the delightful story of Ariel and Prince Eric. It has captured the hearts of audiences around the world. And the music is part of pop culture.

Also included in this Combo Pack is the Blu-ray disc (which can be viewed on any 4K player). This disc includes the film and a sing-along version, as well as bonus features.

The bonus features are definitely worth watching. Alan Menken sits down with Benson, Paige O’Hara (the voice of Belle), Irene Bedard (the voice of Pocahontas), Donna Murphy (the voice of Mother Gothel in “Tangled”), and Lillias White (the voice of Calliope the Muse in “Hercules”) to reminisce about their films and the music that has lasted through the years. Menken and Howard Ashman wrote the wonderful songs from this film.

Another bonus looks at a lecture and history of animation with Ashman who passed away in 1991. His contribution to the studio was enormous.

There is a look at the voice cast in the movie with film from taping sessions and rehearsals. There is also a look at how the animators watched humans to capture realism in animation. This was how animation began but in the years that brought no major animated films to the big screen, the technique had to be relearned by the animators at the studio.

There is also a fun look at Walt Disney’s office and his collections. He loved miniatures and had a large collection of miniatures from around the world. And a special bird in a cage was the impetus for Walt’s development of animatronics. There is history here, and viewers will gain perspective about Walt Disney by watching this featurette.

Some deleted scenes and a few other bonuses round out this new edition.

If you have a 4K TV and a 4K player, I highly recommend this combo pack. If you are not yet set up with 4K (you will be soon), then by all means, the Blu-ray combo pack is still a nice way of revisiting Ariel and all the mer-people, not to mention Sebastian and Flounder.

The Little Mermaid is rated G.

About the Author
Francine Brokaw has been covering
all aspects of the entertainment industry for over 25 years. She also writes about products and travel. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as Internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, from Sourced Media Books, is the entertainment correspondent for Good Day Orange County, and has her own TV show, Beyond the Red Carpet, on Village Television in Orange County.

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