Song of the South on Disney DVD, Blu-Ray and Disney Plus
Song of the South on Disney DVD, Blu-Ray and Disney Plus
There is one Disney classic that's missing on Disney Plus that I want to watch but never seen before and that movie is Song of the South.
Now a lot of people including you think that movie is racist. I disagree with that I think the movie has some great songs in the Disney Sing Along Songs series and they are really great.
If you don't know the plot of Song of the South then here it is.
Song of the South is a 1946 American live-action/animated musical drama film produced by Walt Disney and released by RKO Radio Pictures. It is based on the collection of Uncle Remus stories as adapted by Joel Chandler Harris, and stars James Baskett as Uncle Remus. The film takes place in the southern United States during the Reconstruction era, a period of American history after the end of the American Civil War and the abolition of slavery. The story follows seven-year-old Johnny (Bobby Driscoll) who is visiting his grandmother's plantation for an extended stay. Johnny befriends Uncle Remus, one of the workers on the plantation, and takes joy in hearing his tales about the adventures of Br'er Rabbit, Br'er Fox, and Br'er Bear. Johnny learns from the stories how to cope with the challenges he is experiencing while living on the plantation.
Walt Disney had wanted to produce a film based on the Uncle Remus stories for some time. It was not until 1939 that he began negotiating with the Harris family for the film rights, and in 1944, filming for Song of the South began. The studio constructed a plantation set for the outdoor scenes in Phoenix, Arizona, and some other scenes were filmed in Hollywood. The film is predominantly live action, but includes three animated segments, which were later released as stand-alone television features. Some scenes also feature a combination of live action with animation. Song of the South premiered in Atlanta in November 1946 and the remainder of its initial theater run was a financial success. The song "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" won the 1948 Academy Award for Best Original Song and Baskett received an Academy Honorary Award for his performance as Uncle Remus.
The film is set on a plantation in the southern United States; specifically, some distance from Atlanta, Georgia. Although sometimes misinterpreted as taking place before the American Civil War while slavery was still legal in the region, the film takes place during the Reconstruction Era after slavery was abolished. Harris's original Uncle Remus stories were all set after the American Civil War and the abolition of slavery. Born in 1848, Harris himself was a racial reconciliation activist writer and journalist of the Reconstruction Era. The film makes several indirect references to the Reconstruction Era: clothing is in the newer late-Victorian style; Uncle Remus is free to leave the plantation at will; black field hands are sharecroppers, etc.
Seven-year-old Johnny is excited about what he believes to be a vacation at his grandmother's Georgia plantation with his parents, Sally and John Sr. When they arrive at the plantation, he discovers that his parents will be living apart temporarily, and he will live at the plantation with his mother and grandmother while his father returns to Atlanta to continue his controversial editorship of that city's newspaper. Distraught at his father's departure, Johnny secretly leaves for Atlanta that night with only a bindle.
As Johnny sneaks away from the plantation, he is attracted by the voice of Uncle Remus telling tales of a character named Br'er Rabbit. By this time, word had gotten out that Johnny was missing, and some plantation residents are looking for him. Johnny evades being discovered, but Uncle Remus catches up with him, befriends him, offers him food for his journey, and takes him back to his cabin, where he tells the boy the traditional African-American folktale, "Br'er Rabbit Earns a Dollar a Minute". In the story, Br'er Rabbit attempts to run away from home only to change his mind after an encounter with Br'er Fox and Br'er Bear. Johnny takes the advice and lets Uncle Remus take him back to his mother.
Johnny makes friends with Toby, a young black boy who lives on the plantation, and Ginny Favers, a poor white girl. Ginny gives Johnny a puppy after her two older brothers, Joe and Jake, threaten to drown it. Johnny's mother refuses to let him take care of the puppy, so he takes it to Uncle Remus. Uncle Remus takes the dog in and delights Johnny and his friends with the fable of Br'er Rabbit and the Tar-Baby, stressing that people shouldn't get involved with something they have no business with in the first place. Johnny heeds the advice of how Br'er Rabbit used reverse psychology on Br'er Fox and begs the Favers brothers not to tell their mother about the dog. The reverse psychology works, and the boys go to speak with their mother, then realize that Johnny had fooled them. In an act of revenge, they tell Sally about the dog. She becomes upset that Johnny and Uncle Remus kept the dog despite her order (which was unknown to Uncle Remus). She instructs Uncle Remus not to tell any more stories to her son.
Johnny's birthday arrives and Johnny picks up Ginny to take her to his party. On the way there, Joe and Jake push Ginny into a mud puddle. With her dress ruined, Ginny is unable to go to the party and runs off crying. Johnny begins fighting with the boys, but their fight is broken up by Uncle Remus, who scolds Joe and Jake. Johnny runs off to comfort Ginny. He explains that he does not want to go either, especially since his father will not be there. Uncle Remus discovers both dejected children and cheers them up by telling the story of Br'er Rabbit and his "Laughing Place". When the three return to the plantation, Sally becomes angry at Johnny for missing his own birthday party, and tells Uncle Remus not to spend any more time with him. Saddened by the misunderstanding of his good intentions, Uncle Remus packs his bags and leaves for Atlanta. Johnny rushes to intercept him, but is attacked by a bull and seriously injured after taking a shortcut through a pasture. While Johnny hovers between life and death, his father returns. Johnny calls for Uncle Remus, and his grandmother escorts him in. Uncle Remus begins telling a tale of Br'er Rabbit and the Laughing Place, and the boy miraculously survives.
Later, a fully recovered Johnny sings with Ginny and Toby while Johnny's returned puppy runs alongside them. Nearby, Uncle Remus is shocked when Br'er Rabbit and several of the other characters from his stories appear in front of them and interact with the children. Uncle Remus rushes to join the group, and together, they all skip away into the sunset.
James Baskett as Uncle Remus
Bobby Driscoll as Johnny
Luana Patten as Ginny Favers
Glenn Leedy as Toby
Ruth Warrick as Sally
Lucile Watson as Grandmother
Hattie McDaniel as Aunt Tempe
Erik Rolf as John
Olivier Urbain as Mr. Favers (uncredited)
Mary Field as Mrs. Favers
Anita Brown as Maid
George Nokes as Jake Favers
Gene Holland as Joe Favers
Johnny Lee as Br'er Rabbit
James Baskett as Br'er Fox and Br'er Rabbit (the latter in the last animated segment)
Nick Stewart as Br'er Bear
Roy Glenn as Br'er Frog (uncredited)
Clarence Nash as Bluebird (uncredited)
Helen Crozier as Mother Possum (uncredited)