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Madame Medusa; Disney's greatest villain?
on 24 May 2010
Possibly my favourite Disney film, though I'm also fond of The Sword In The Stone and Basil the Great Mouse Detective. They're all classics that have sort of fallen off the radar, not as well known or celebrated as Bambi, Snow White, Beauty and The Beast etc, but as a child they were my favourites. For the most part The Reascuers is a very sweet film, about two little mice who are part of a society dedicated to rescuing children in peril. One is Bernard, a chubby, bumbling former janitor, who is charmingly awkward and nervous, and his glamorous and exotic compainion Bianca, who loves excitement and adventure.
They set off to rescue a sweet little girl named Penny, with a cute lisp, who is an orphan who's afraid noone will ever want her (awwww!). They get help along the way from a sweet old cat named Rufus, and a boisterous albatross who runs his own airline with himself as the plane.
It's all very nice, but as usual a disney film is really only as good as its villain, and the film really comes alive with the arrival of the fabulous Madame Medusa. She is a flame haired monster, with a hilariously pronounced sexy walk and disproportionately prominent rear, a wonderful array of facial expressions and a perfect voice for expressing contempt and bad temper. I used to fall about laughing when ever she snarled 'oh, shuttup!' at her hapless accomplice, Snoops, which is something she does fairly frequently. She is just a wonderful work of character in animation, whether she is driving recklessly in her demonic, exhaust spewing car, attacking her pet crocodiles with a broom, or persuading Penny to go into a dark, flooded cavern to retrieve a diamond; my favourite Disney villain, just a little above the gloriously self absorbed Gaston and the evil professor Rattigan!
Its a great film for children, but I have to be honest, I watched it just the other day and still loved it as much as ever, so either its an ageless classic, nostalgia got the better of me, or I haven't matured a day since primary school.