I've never read the book, so I can't speak to how well it follows the original story (but does anything from Hollywood EVER follow the original book?) And I concede the animation does not meet the highest standards. (There's a pretty obvious flaw in Louie's big trumpet performance.)
But on to the positives...
While the animation isn't the best quality, the color is bright and beautiful! And the vocal talent is terrific! The cast of voices includes Jason Alexander (Father), Mary Steenburgen (Mother), Seth Green (Boyd), Reese Witherspoon (Serena), Carol Burnett and Joe Mantegna. Each actor injects life and personality into their character. I especially liked Mary Steenburgen's "mother" and Jason's "father" is very entertaining. My daughter thinks the camp leader who mumbles through the megaphone is funny--I found him annoying at first but I got the joke when I saw the campfire scene.
And as a music lover I must mention the film's music. Louie's "trumpet voice" is performed by Michael "Patches" Stewart, and the music score is by Marcus Miller. I find myself humming the tunes at work and my 3 year-old is already starting to sing along with the words!
Bottom line...small children will love Trumpet of the Swan!
This doesn't follow the original book very well. If you are someone that believes a movie has to follow the book word for word you will be dissapointed. However, if you can get past that, you will enjoy this book.
Louis a trumpeter swan is born unable to talk. He falls in love with Serena and can't court her. He goes to school and learns to read and spell and write. However, as other swans can't read it does him very little good. In the meantime his father gets a trumpet for him. Louis learns to talk through the trumpet and music.
This is a classic video. It is well done. I have read reviews for the dvd that say there is poor pictures and audio. This is not the case for the VHS tape we have at our house.
This movie is about relationships between parents and friends and husbands and wives. It is about music and love and more.
Well worth the money.
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