The Little Mermaid was released in 1989 and it was the first film to begin the modern classic era of Disney (which I believe stopped with Mulan). I rented this movie from the local video store and at the end I felt as though my heart was being wrenched in my chest. At that time I had never seen such a romantic film. The fact that she had to try and get Prince Eric to fall in love with her when she was unable to speak looked like a lot of effort that it couldn’t be anything but true love!
For ten years I placed The Little Mermaid at the top of the Disney ladder as the greatest Disney animation of all time. I was (am) a sucker for romantic story-lines.
Ten years has passed and I find the story is ridiculous. Prince Eric had to fall for Little Mermaid solely on her superficial looks. In THREE DAYS. He really fell head over hills with the mysterious singing voice. The film seemed to rush ahead more than I remembered.
I guess I have a thing about princesses with beautiful singing voices because the other Disney movie that I fell in love with was Sleeping Beauty. Prince Philip, like Prince Eric was attracted to the mysterious singing voice in the forest. I like how they did not declare their love for one another during the dancing and singing scene as another film may have suggested. Nevertheless, they were very attracted to one another and there was definite chemistry between the two, at least as much chemistry as two drawn humans could be without it being too cheesy.
That is why I am comparing the two. I treasured both films as a child but as a adult I believe Sleeping Beauty wins for its music, artistic detail, innovative sound production, and characters.
Ariel is naive, immature and impulsive while Princess Aurora at the same age is elegant, classy, and graceful.
Let’s face it. When compared to Maleficent, Ursala is like Santa Claus. She’s evil but she isn’t as scary as wicked Maleficent who still chills me to the bone.
They’re both amazing. It’s a tie.
But I prefer Prince Phillip. Shhh.