FernGully: The Last Rainforest “Spirit of the Trees” (1992)

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There are days I feel like FernGully: The Last Rainforest doesn’t get nearly as much love as it should because there are some incredible musical moments to be found in this story. My favorite moment by far comes towards the end of the film when Magi, the oldest of the fairies, summons the spirit of the trees to give the other fairies a fighting chance against a reborn Hexxus. This scene, appropriately enough, is titled “Spirit of the Trees.”

FernGully: The Last Rainforest “Spirit of the Trees” (1992)

The sequence begins when Magi causes a seed to glow and levitate. All around the forest, trees begin to glow as a chorus of ancient voices (seemingly) summon the powers inherent in the forest. FernGully was already beautiful, but when all the trees are magically lit, it looks like something out of a fairy tale (no pun intended). I loved this moment growing up; it has a musical rawness and power that just sticks with you.

This is a shorter post today (since the piece is all orchestral) but this is also something I’ve wanted to share for a long time and I hope you enjoy listening to it. Let me know what you think about it in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Alan Silvestri talks FernGully: The Last Rainforest (1992)

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

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The Great Mouse Detective “Goodbye, So Soon” (1986)

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The Great Mouse Detective “Goodbye, So Soon” (Film Scene) (1986)

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, Ratigan from The Great Mouse Detective is one of the most underrated Disney villains ever created. He’s so smug, so pompous, and at the same time so incredibly dangerous (see Disturbing Disney #17 for details), you wonder how anyone could possibly forget about him. It helps that Ratigan was brought to life by the legendary Vincent Price (that master of horror and villainous behavior). In fact, Ratigan is so smug that when he leaves Basil and Dawson in a trap meant to utterly destroy them (well, Basil in particular, Dawson is just collateral damage as far as Ratigan is concerned), he’s left a recording to serenade Basil in his final moments. This song is “Goodbye, So Soon.”

The Great Mouse Detective “Goodbye, So Soon” (Soundtrack version) (1986)

In the film itself you actually don’t hear a lot of this song because it’s covered over by dialogue and other sound effects, but it really is a neat little song. The gist is simple: Ratigan has enjoyed the challenge Basil has given him over the years, but now that he’s won and Basil has lost, it’s time to say goodbye and move on to the better things in life (like taking over the Mouse Kingdom).

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The Great Mouse Detective Behind-the-Scenes

Goodbye so soon
And isn’t this a crime?
We know by now that time knows how to fly
So here’s goodbye so soon
You’ll find your separate way
With time so short I’ll say so long
And go
So soon
Goodbye

You followed me, I followed you
We were like each other’s shadows for a while
Now as you see, this game is through
So although it hurts, I’ll try to smile
As I say

Goodbye so soon
And isn’t this a crime?
We know by now that time knows how to fly
So here’s goodbye so soon
You’ll find your separate way
With time so short I’ll say so long
And go
So soon
Goodbye

In case you’re wondering, yes that is Vincent Price performing the song. In his last few years he often spoke of Ratigan as being one of his favorite roles (having wanted to play a Disney villain for some time). I’ve always found it funny that Ratigan took the time to record a song just for Basil and it speaks to just how long this plan has been in development. Of course, Ratigan leaving to enact the rest of his plan is ultimately what allows Basil to escape the trap (it’s a common failing in villains, leaving the hero in peril assuming their demise is a sure thing), but that’s a story for another day.

Let me know what you think about “Goodbye, So Soon” in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

The Great Mouse Detective “The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind” (1986)

The Great Mouse Detective “Let me be good to you” (1986)

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

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The Sword in the Stone “Higitus Figitus” (1963)

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The Sword in the Stone “Higitus Figitus” (1963)

Wart’s first meeting with Merlin is interesting to say the very least. One moment he’s fetching Kay’s arrow (though why he needs to retrieve it I have no idea), the next he’s fallen head over heels into the living room of Merlin “the world’s most powerful wizard.” Now that Wart has finally arrived for tea, Merlin announces that he will become his tutor and give him a proper education. But when Wart announces that he needs to get back to the castle, Merlin decides to pack everything up and journey back with him. This is the setting for “Higitus Figitus” which might as well be called “The Packing Song.”

Higitus figitus zumbakazing.
I want your attention, everything.
We’re packing to leave. Come on, let’s go.
No, no, not you; books are always first, you know.

Hockety pockety wockety wack
Abra abra dabra nack
Shrink in size very small
We’ve got to save enough room for all
Higitus figitus migitus mum
Prestidigitonium

Alakafez, balakazez
Malakamez meripides
Hockety pockety wockety… What?!

Now stop, stop, stop, stop.
See here, sugar bowl! You’re getting rough!
That poor old tea set is cracked enough.

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Alright let’s start again.
Ah… Oh, where was I boy?
Wart: Uh, hockety pockety?

Merlin: Oh yes, yes, that’s right…

Hockety pockety wockety wack
Odds and ends and bric a brac

I’ll be with you in just a minute, son
Packing’s almost done!

Archimedes: You… you… bungling blockhead!

Merlin: Hey! Easy there; no no, go ahead.

Dum goo-dily doo-dily doo-dily dum
This is the best part, now!
Higitus figitus migitus mum
Prestidigitonium
Higitus figitus migitus mum
Prestidigitoni…WHOOPS!

Several things about this song: I LOVE that the sugar bowl has an attitude and tries to slip in first. Also, I totally agree with Merlin’s opinion that “books are always first.” For the most part “Higitus Figitus” is a song full of complete nonsense words as everything in Merlin’s cottage shrinks down to fit inside a single bag. There is a very funny moment when Archimedes barely escapes his rapidly shrinking house (much to his consternation). The song does serve as a fun little moment to demonstrate a bit of Merlin’s magical abilities (I mean not everyone is able to pack an entire cottage full of stuff into one bag). Let me know what you think about “Higitus Figitus” in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

The Sword in the Stone “A Most Befuddling Thing” (1963)

The Sword in the Stone “That’s What Makes the World Go Round” (1963)

The Sword in the Stone “Mad, Madam Mim” (1963)

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

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Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

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The Sword in the Stone “That’s What Makes the World Go Round” (1963)

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The Sword in the Stone “That’s What Makes the World Go Round” (1963)

Over the course of The Sword in the Stone, Wart (the future King Arthur) is turned into several different animal forms. Later in the film he’s turned into a squirrel (as seen in “A Most Befuddling Thing”) but his first adventure into the animal world comes as a fish. However, as fun as it is to be a fish, Wart quickly discovers that he doesn’t actually know HOW to be a fish. So, Merlin takes it upon himself to teach the newly created fish a few things about how the world works. This is the basis for “That’s What Makes the World Go Round.”

Left and right
Like day and night
That’s what makes the world go round
In and out
Thin and stout
That’s what makes the world go round

For every up there is a down
For every square there is a round
For every high there is a low
For every to there is a fro

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To and fro
Stop and go
That’s what makes the world go round
Thick and thin
Lose or win
That’s what makes the world go round

You must set your sights upon the heights
Don’t be a mediocrity
Don’t just wait then trust to fate
And say, that’s how it’s meant to be
It’s up to you how far you go
If you don’t try you’ll never know
And so my lad as I’ve explained
Nothing ventured, nothing gained

The song is all about how the world is full of different things and people. Merlin is trying to make the point that you don’t have to be big and powerful (like Wart’s foster brother Kay) to succeed in the world. The song evolves into an object lesson when the pair of fish draw the attention of a massive pike, who proceeds to stalk them in hopes of a meal. When Merlin becomes trapped in a helmet, it’s up to Wart to use his brains to outwit the pike’s brawn (which he does though not without the assistance of Archimedes).

Let me know what you think about “That’s What Makes the World Go Round” in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

The Sword in the Stone “A Most Befuddling Thing” (1963)

The Sword in the Stone “Mad, Madam Mim” (1963)

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

Become a patron of the blog at: patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

The Rescuers “Rescue Aid Society” (1977)

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The Rescuers “Rescue Aid Society” (1977)

The Rescuers is yet another example of an older Disney film that is slowly falling into obscurity. Based on Margery Sharp’s novels The Rescuers and Miss Bianca, the film follows two mice (Bianca (Eva Gabor) and Bernard (Bob Newhart)) as they set out to rescue a girl named Penny from the clutches of Madame Medusa.

“Rescue Aid Society” is sung at the beginning of the film and serves as the official anthem of the (you guessed it) Rescue Aid Society, an organization of mice that mirrors the United Nations in that it is made up of mice from all around the world. As the picture on the wall shows, the group was founded in ancient times by the fabled mouse that pulled the thorn out of the lion’s paw.

R-E-S-C-U-E
Rescue Aid Society
Heads held high, touch the sky
You mean everything to me

In a fix, in a bind
Call on us anytime
We’ll appear from nowhere
Mighty are we

R-E-S-C-U-E
Rescue Aid Society
Honesty, loyalty
We pledge to thee

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R-E-S-C-U-E
Rescue Aid Society
Heads held high, touch the sky
You mean everything to me

In a jam, in a scrape
And you think, “no escape”
Do not fear, we’ll be here
Courageous are we

R-E-S-C-U-E
Rescue Aid Society
Heads held high, touch the sky
Our hearts we pledge to thee

Although not credited, that is actually Robie Lester providing the singing voice for Miss Bianca when she makes her entrance. The song (in the film) is accompanied by what look like a group of Boy Scouts (or would it be Mice Scouts?) who are playing trumpets and drums to keep the group together as they sing. Humorously, one of the mice (from Germany I think) sings with such a loud voice that many members pause in their singing to look over at her.

Let me know what you think of “Rescue Aid Society” in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Become a patron of the blog at: patreon.com/musicgamer460

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

Moana “Know Who You Are” (2016)

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Moana “Know Who You Are” (2016)

The climax of Moana has one of my favorite twists in recent memory. For most of the story, we have been told that in order to restore Te Fiti, Moana and Maui will have to avoid and/or defeat Te Ka. However, while Maui distracts the fiery demon, Moana scrambles up a rocky slope and realizes the space where Te Fiti should be is empty. And that’s when Moana puts the pieces together and realizes that Te Ka IS Te Fiti, this is what happens when her Heart is taken from her. Moana knows what she has to do now, and in a beautiful scene commands the ocean to make a dry path so that Te Ka can come directly to her. As the enraged demon claws her way through the sand, Moana sings her realizations:

(Ou mata e matagi)
I have crossed the horizon to find you
(Ou loto mamaina toa)
I know your name
(Manatu atu)
They have stolen the heart from inside you
(Taku pelepele)
But this does not define you
(Manatu atu)
This is not who you are
You know who you are

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I take particular notice of the line “They have stolen the heart from inside you/But this does not define you.” A lot of people have interpreted the Te Ka/Te Fiti dichotomy to be an analogy for rape. While Maui can claim all he wants that he was trying to help humans, the fact remains that he forcibly took Te Fiti’s heart away from her, scarring her and filling her with rage. It’s easy to let the bad things that happened to you define your identity, but Moana’s song assures the goddess that it doesn’t have to be this way. Deep down, she is still Te Fiti, despite the pain she is in. The goddess clearly hears Moana’s message, because as she comes face to face with this mortal who holds her Heart, Te Ka slowly cools and is practically stone when Moana places the Heart back where it belongs.

What do you think of the song “Know Who You Are”? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and have a great day!

Become a patron of the blog at: patreon.com/musicgamer460

Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar/etc. Soundtracks A-Z

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

See also:

Moana “Where You Are” (2016)

Moana “How Far I’ll Go” (2016)

Moana “How Far I’ll Go (reprise)” (2016)

Moana “We Know the Way” (2016)

Moana “You’re Welcome” (2016)

Moana “Shiny” (2016)

Moana “I am Moana” (2016)

My Thoughts On: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)

*note: To be fair I’m trying to keep spoilers to a minimum

I have a confession to make: while I’ve seen the original Spider-Man trilogy and I enjoy Tom Holland’s performance in the MCU, I’m actually not the biggest fan of Spider-Man (not sure why, it’s just not my first choice when it comes to picking a superhero movie to watch). On that basis, I was nervous going into the theater, because despite the critical acclaim surrounding the film, I wasn’t sure I was going to like it. Now after having seen it, I can definitely say that I *do* like, love and enjoy Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, but it took me a little bit to get into the film.

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I’m convinced that I must suffer from secondary embarrassment (feeling someone else’s embarrassment/awkwardness as if it were my own), because without fail, every time I see a superhero go through that awkward phase where they’re trying to figure out what’s happened to them (like what happens with Miles), instead of finding it funny (which I think we’re supposed to), I find it all very awkward and hard to watch. Happily, the film doesn’t linger on this part for too long. But before I move on to what I loved about this film, I have to make it clear that I found the sequence (after Gwen loses some of her hair) where Miles is overwhelmed by the fact that the entire school knows what happened and is laughing at him to be very triggering for me (having gone through extensive bullying and isolation during grade school). Again, I’m happy and relieved that the film didn’t linger on this aspect.

Now for what I loved, which is quite a lot: first, I love the animation style of this film, especially after Miles is bit by the spider. Once Miles begins to change, the film resembles an actual comic book, down to thought-bubbles and commentary boxes. It’s incredible to watch and for the first time I felt like a studio had actually succeeded in bringing a comic book to life.

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Second, I’m in LOVE with the other Spider-People. To be honest, apart from Spider-Gwen, I didn’t really know anything about these other versions of Spider-Man but I loved all of them. Seeing Spider-Gwen in action makes me really excited for the Spider-Women spin off (which will include Gwen, Spider-Woman and Silk). I loved Spider-Ham a lot more than I thought I would (especially when he whips out the anvil and mallet during the final fight). I’d never heard of Peni Parker but it was cool to see a character drawn in an anime style

Third, the film certainly does not lack for surprises. In hindsight, I should’ve seen the outcome of that first Spider-Man fight coming. Anytime you hear a character say “No matter what happens, I always manage to get back up” that should tell you something bad is coming. I also was not expecting Liv to be revealed as Dr. Octopus (to be honest, that was the first moment I really began to enjoy the film). But the surprise that got me the most was the reveal of the Prowler’s identity. Composer Daniel Pemberton wrote a heart-wrenching piece of music for this moment that makes it just so devastating.

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A full-length review of Into the Spider-Verse‘s score will have to wait until I have a chance to listen to it again, but I can say the score is amazing. Daniel Pemberton did a fantastic job creating a score that is engaging and keeps you engrossed in the story. I also like that the score includes rap and hip-hop songs (meant to represent the music Miles would listen to).

In conclusion, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a fantastic film, and I can see why it’s being called the greatest Spider-Man film ever made. Let me know what you think of this film in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Animated Film Reviews

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