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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Walt Disney's most forgotten masterpiece!
Among Walt Disney's thirteen animated works, none has been put aside and forgotten as much as The Sword in the Stone, which is really a shame, knowing that this is a no less delightful Disney experience, it is different in the fact that it tells a different kind of story, it is less intriguing but it offers lots of cool scenes and some memorable characters.

The...
Published on 3 Aug. 2007 by Taran Wanderer

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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Digitally Destroyed
For many, this will not rank amongst Disney's finest, but it has a special place in the hearts of those who grew up with it on the cinema screen, on TV, VHS and DVD and I have been looking forward to getting it in a high resolution format release. It's one of my favourites due to many reasons, but I have always appreciated the animation style from the Disney films of this...
Published 4 months ago by Digital Dave


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Digitally Destroyed, 2 Jan. 2015
This review is from: Sword in the Stone [Blu-ray] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
For many, this will not rank amongst Disney's finest, but it has a special place in the hearts of those who grew up with it on the cinema screen, on TV, VHS and DVD and I have been looking forward to getting it in a high resolution format release. It's one of my favourites due to many reasons, but I have always appreciated the animation style from the Disney films of this period, including the Jungle Book and Robin Hood. It's a scratchy, sketchy, energetic style, unlike the rich visuals from early Disney classics or the polished style that had evolved by the 1980s. Not that you'd know it from this blu-ray release, as every frame has been scrubbed clean to within an inch of it's life by the most horrific example of digital noise reduction you are ever likely to see.

Any dirt, film grain or scratches that may have been present in the source would have been much more welcome on my HD screen than this blurry, artificially smudged mess. Any detail that was originally there is now, well, not. There's a comparison video that somebody has posted on youtube which demonstates this very clearly. In one scene, the sword glows with individually animated stars, however on this blu-ray, they appear only as vague blobs.

I was determined to disbelieve the previous reviews on this score and purchased this disc on the high street. Thankfully, I was able to return it. To avoid similar disappointment, all you can do is wait in the hope that Disney realise what a terrible job they have made of this "digitally restored"/destroyed version and see fit to issue a proper release some time soon.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Walt Disney's most forgotten masterpiece!, 3 Aug. 2007
Among Walt Disney's thirteen animated works, none has been put aside and forgotten as much as The Sword in the Stone, which is really a shame, knowing that this is a no less delightful Disney experience, it is different in the fact that it tells a different kind of story, it is less intriguing but it offers lots of cool scenes and some memorable characters.

The story in 1963's The Sword in the Stone revolves around education, education is the main theme and the moral is that you can't be anyone without a good education (Although in the real world we know that that isn't always the case). When England is left to perish without a king, a marvelous miracle occurs, a sword placed deep into a stone with the words that whoever pulls it out will be king of all England. Strong and mighty men give it a try, all failing and with time the sword is forgotten.

The people of England then decide to have a knight tournament, in which the winner will be crowned king of all England. Wise wizard Merlin soon realizes that it takes more than strength or plain brutality to rule a country so he decides to educate a young servant boy by the name of "Wart." With different tricks and the help of his wise owl Archimedes, Merlin manages to teach some of the most important lessons to the young boy. Each of these lessons are taught in fun ways, by turning Wart and himself into different sorts of animals, he teaches about intelligence against strength, gravity and even love while at the same time, showing him about how different animals must struggle to survive.

On the other hand, the son of Wart's master, Kay is the perfect example of no brain and pure strength, Merlin realizes having someone like him as king would bring the land to destruction so he must hurry and bring up Wart before Kay wins the knight tournament and is crowned King. In the end, Wart's hard-working brain defeat's Kay's strength and leads to be one of the greatest kings in the "history" of the United Kingdom.

Fun, colorful scenes, great characters and lively music make this a quite memorable Disney classic. Every scene from beginning to end is filled with fun, including one in which Merlin himself must use the logic of his own lessons to defeat the hilariously evil Madame Mim, once again, by turning into different animals, surely one of the greatest scenes in the film. Animation quality may not be of the sharpest kind, however the animation itself is lively and realistic, characters are very expressive and move about realistically. Backgrounds can get annoyingly "lazy" but are not as bad as in, say, "101 Dalmatians." The movie is a little dated because of its references to the 1960's, but it is still quite fun to watch at any time, any year. Highly recommended, being the last animated feature Walt Disney saw through completion and indeed one of their greatest and most interesting.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Blu ray transfer of a sweet movie ruined by DNR, 29 Oct. 2013
By 
Francisco José Poyato Ariza "Fran" (Madrid, Spain) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Sword in the Stone [Blu-ray] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
I cannot understand how an animated movie can be so badly ruined. The DNR, which I am always against because it alters the original aspect of a movie and results on lack of detail, is so excessive in this "restoration" that it creates ghost lines, blurry figures and backgrounds, a huge lack of detail and an ugly, artificial softness in the drawings. Companies that are supposed to love their movies should never use DNR, that is a crying shame. Why Diney decided to ruin this movie to me will be a mistery to me. Why the obsession with artificial DNR, here and anywhere else, will always be a mistery to me. I never thought I would feel uncomfortable while watching this very dear movie from my childhood. SHAME ON DISNEY, SHAME ON ALL COMPANIES USING DNR.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth getting, 2 July 2014
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Loved this film as a child and have wanted to get it on DVD for ages. It didn't disappoint, my husband and I found it as good and as funny as we remembered. It has some of the most hilarious characters and witty lines of any Disney film, in my opinion.
The colour looks like it has been brightened up for DVD but other than that the quality of the animation looks untouched, it certainly doesn't look overly remastered and it has the excellent hand-drawn quality of the great old Disney films.
The one downside is that there wasn't a widescreen option so it looks a bit square and boxy on a big modern TV, but you stop noticing that after about 30 seconds and just enjoy the film.
There are also a couple of little extra animations; a Goofy-style one about knights and a Mickey one, possibly others that we haven't watched yet.
Overall, if you liked this as a kid you will still love it, and if you've never seen it before, splash out your £5 and see it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A 50 year old classic, 29 Mar. 2013
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Got this for our son for his birthday, he loves it.

OK it's now over 50 years old but it has been re-mastered and the colours are vibrant..

We all find the irritable owl Archimedes funny ( voiced by Junius Matthews who also provided the voice for Rabbit in Winnie the pooh )
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite Disney film, 16 Dec. 2005
By A Customer
I have an extensive Disney collection, and "The Sword in The Stone" is- in my opinion- by far the best. The graphics are "old school", the songs are fantastic, the characters have so much personality, the story has some great twists and turns, and the script is witty and memorable. It is a lovely adaptation of the King Arthur story and very re-watchable. Those who try and compare it to other "modern" Disney movies really shouldn't; as brilliant as modern day computer graphics are, this often overlooked gem shines through by virtue of its content. This is original Disney at its most magical.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome, 31 Oct. 2013
I really do think this is one of Walt Disney forgotten pieces of Art. The Sword in the Stone is an all time classic. It's defiantly the best interpretation of King Arthur and the Round tables that I've ever seen, in fact looking back, I'm not sure I even realized that's what it was about, because I got so caught up in the magic of Merlin and Wart. I have probably seen this film thousands of times, so many times, I actually had to go and buy another DVD, because it had just been played so many times. My brother who shows no interest in Disney at all, even asked to borrow it one night, as he remembered it from his childhood. The characters are fantastic and really funny, each one so different yet really entertaining all the same. Brilliant animation. I'm so happy to have this in my collection, I'll defiantly be passing this one down to my children one day. It's a must see, lovely to watch at Christmas too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining for all., 3 Jan. 2013
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This is a great version of the Arthur/Merlin story to span the age barriers. As the title and front cover suggest, it is a cartoon form of the beginning of the story when Arthur obtains possession of the sword and is 'educated' by Merlin. Arthur is a well-meaning but slightly accident-prone boy, and his adventures and lessons lead to much hilarity and to many magical moments. There is much life philosophy being imbibed at the same time. It grabs the attention of children from a very young age, but is also watchable for those older children who enjoy the Merlin series on tv, and is fun, light entertainment for younger Harry Potter fans. The 'duel' between Merlin and the witch is great fun. This film is brilliant for adults to 'share' with young ones, and if you have any around it's a great excuse to watch it yourself!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Much better than I once thought, 13 July 2008
By 
Robert Morris (Dallas, Texas) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
As other reviewers have duly noted, this film (first released in 1963) is based on the first of four parts of T.H. White's The Once and Future King (1958), focusing on Arthur's birth, childhood, and youth before he became king of England. The film has been reissued as a 45th anniversary edition. It features the well-selected voices of Sebastian Cabot (Sir Ector/Narrator), Karl Swenson (Merlin), Rickie Sorensen (Arthur/"Wart"), Junius Matthews (Archimedes), and Alan Napier (Sir Pelinore). Frankly, I was underwhelmed when I first saw it many years ago and had little patience with the antics. While seeing it again recently, I found the film much more entertaining and frequently charming.

In our family, a film's "acid test" for grandchildren is for them to want to see it again, immediately. After I watched it with several of the younger ones, they requested that but agreed, instead, to check out "Merlin's New Magical Academy Game," passing on the other bonus features. I would not rank The Sword in the Stone among the "classic" animated features produced by Disney (e.g. Bambi, Beauty and the Beast, Dumbo, Pinocchio, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs) and Pixar (e.g. Finding Nemo, Ratatouille, Toy Story, Toy Story 2, and WALL-E) as well as DreamWorks' Antz and Shrek. However, how many animation features do?

Perhaps there are other grandparents and parents who also saw The Sword in the Stone years ago, as did I, and are not inclined to have a copy available for children to see. I urge them to reconsider because it possesses a unique "magic" of its own. I think they will also enjoy the bonus features. Hopefully this reissued version will attract the interest and gain the appreciation the film clearly deserves.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars High on Beauty, Low on Plot, 26 May 2010
By 
Atli Hafsteinsson (Reykjavík, Iceland) - See all my reviews
This is one of those movies whose obscurity doesn't surprise me. This is a well-executed, beautifully-crafted movie, but its plot and pace never amount to what it promises.

This is the story of the upcoming King Arthur, more specifically when he is a little boy, employed as dishwasher for the local earl, whose pig-brained bully of a son is set to become the next king if no one can remove the sword Excalibur from its rock. Arthur's future looks bleak until eccentric wizard Merlin, along with his dry-witted owl Archimedes, arrives on the scene. Having travelled through time, Merlin knows Arthur's significance and sets to train him up to believe in himself through a series of field tests involving seeing himself in different situations. So Merlin changes Arthur into a fish and a squirrel, resulting in hilarious romping until Arthur stumbles upon the lair of the oddly fascinating albeit wicked witch Madam Mimm.

The trouble with this movie is that not much of significance happens. The plot seems pretty secondary. Most of the movie involves Merlin and Arthur on their little training missions. Excalibur plays a pretty small part indeed, and the movie doesn't really end on much of a high note, either, even though it's supposed to be one. So much more could have been done with the plot. This movie goes overboard with acting and forgets the plot. This A to B structure worked with the Jungle Book, but in the case of the Sword in the Stone, it's a point of storytelling that doesn't sustain itself.

Of course, what the movie lacks in plot it makes up for with visuals. They are stunning, I can tell you. The animation is beautiful and flowing, especially in the case of the wolf (a character I wish I had played more part in the movie) and the scene where Merlin and Mimm duel by turning themselves into all manner of creatures. In the hands of these people, this makes the Sword in the Stone worth a view for its visual excellence, making up somewhat for the thin story and development.

A pleasant, beautiful view, pretty low on substance but with a lot going for it in the visual department.
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Sword in the Stone [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
Sword in the Stone [Blu-ray] [Region Free] by Wolfgang Reitherman (Blu-ray - 2013)
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