"Winnie the Pooh: A Valentine for You" Special Edition Is Lovely But Expensive

Disney’s Winnie the Pooh has one of the strongest casts an animated franchise could hope for. Pooh himself has all the amiability of Mickey Mouse with ten times the personality. Then you have the cowardly Piglet, the pseudo-intellectual Owl, the bouncy (bouncy bouncy bouncy fun fun fun fun fun) Tigger … The only weak character […]

Best Anime Import of 2009: "Samurai Champloo"

This week, Toon Zone News looks back at 2009 by reposting our reviews of what we felt was the best that the year had to offer. We begin with our staff pick for the Best Anime Import of 2009, meaning the best anime series to receive a “Complete” DVD set release during the year. The […]

"The Flight of Dragons" Soars

The Flight of Dragons is the most interesting of the Rankin-Bass “epic” fantasy features. Like most of their specials, it has a sincere, almost didactic tone, and feels very simple and straightforward. This mood, when applied to a story as genre-bending as The Flight of Dragon‘s, makes for a very intriguing experience. For the record, […]

A Very "Meh"-rry "Madagascar"

Merry Madagascar does very few things right. Two things it does get right—as is not uncommon for a DreamWorks production—are the visuals and the voice-work. The four celebrities that voice the main group of animals (Chris Rock as Marty the Zebra, Ben Stiller as Alex the Lion, David Schwimmer as Melman the Giraffe, and Jada […]

"I Want a Dog For Christmas, Charlie Brown": If Christmas Specials Were Underwear ...

It’s not hard to guess when I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown was made. It lacks the rampant creativity and outstanding imagination that made the earliest Charlie Brown ventures such successes, and it is also missing the obvious periodic quirks that marked the better specials of the 70s and 80s. In fact, I […]

"The Secret Saturdays Vol. 2": No Sophomore Slump Here

I enjoyed the first volume of Secret Saturdays, noting that it had the potential to be one of the best action shows on television. It hasn’t quite gotten there yet with the five episodes contained on this second volume of episodes, but it’s improved noticeably, and judging by some of the foreshadowing at work, I […]

Toons of the 2000s: Top 5 Animated Features

 Go back to the Toons of the 2000s Intro.    This has been a great decade for animated features. Mainstream acceptance of animation has greatly expanded, with a majority of films that would have been ignored in the 70s and 80s getting wide theatrical releases and heavy commercial and critical attention. A lot of this attention […]

"The Velveteen Rabbit": Stuffed With Fluff

The Velveteen Rabbit is a mish-mash of Hollywood-style sentimentality and overused, tired plot-lines that, while it is certainly not as painful an experience as it could have been, is still not something I would really recommend watching. For starters, it’s not very faithful to its source material, the children’s book of the same name. While […]

"Welcome to the NHK: The Complete Series": Welcome to a Great TV Show

Welcome to the NHK is a show about conspiracies, suicide, and porn. It’s also about marketing schemes, videogames, and insanity. Mostly, though, it’s about Tatsuhiro Sato, a twenty-two-year-old college dropout who, thanks to his antisocial tendencies, has barely left his apartment for four years, living off the allowance given to him by his unsuspecting parents. […]

"Battle For Terra": Failed Revolution

Battle for Terra is an alien-invasion movie in reverse. A group of humans, fleeing from the Milky Way after destroying Earth, Mars, and Venus, invade the planet “Terra.” (That’s the name they give it; we never find out what the natives call it.) This story is told through the eyes of a young Terrian adolescent […]

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