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CW's Review of Bambi 2

rated it: posted: Feb 05, 2012
Reviews: 51 | Reviewing Ninja
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There is a place where the grass is what’s for dinner. Birds sing, deer dance and play, new life is born each spring. Everyone lives in harmony with each other, even the owl. But when your given name seems to be Friend, I guess you’d feel guilty if you salivated at the sight of one of the animals who calls you that. Still, Friend Owl must’ve eaten something, since Thumper only had four siblings in this movie, having had up to six in the original.

So Bambi II picked up from the moment in the original movie when the Great Prince of the Forest told Bambi that his mother was gone. From there, it was assumed that Bambi was taken care of by the Great Prince for a year or so, then returned to the forest after he was all grown up.

Turns out that wasn’t even close to the truth. Although it seemed like he hadn’t seen his friends for a while in the original movie, Bambi II showed that he didn’t actually leave the forest at that point in his fawnhood. He spent what seemed like at least another season or so in the forest where he played around with his friends, met a rival who swore revenge at the end of the film and had another run-in with man.

In fact, come to think of it, “man” was never actually seen in either movie, and if I were a species of space alien who had no idea what a man was, I would assume that man travelled in packs, ran on all fours, and barked savagely. Every time “man” was present in either Bambi movie, only man’s hunting dogs were shown. Sure, we’re supposed to fill in the blanks as viewers of the film, but according to evidence both the original and the sequel provide, “man” must be the cervine word for “dog.”

A word about Ronno. I don’t really believe in his status as Bambi’s rival. It seemed like he tried too hard to be a bad guy and pretended it was because Faline favoured Bambi’s company over his. But Bambi never once tried to make right with Ronno, and Ronno was always far too quick to run home to his mother when things went south for him. The next Scar, he wasn’t. In fact, I believe that Ronno and Bambi could’ve grown up together as friends. Even his supposed antagonistic behaviour at the end of the first movie, when he and Bambi fought over the right to take Faline as a mate, felt like nothing more than proper deer behaviour rather than someone acting maliciously towards someone else. It was like watching the United States presidential primaries, where a bunch of grown men who otherwise support each other in between elections suddenly turn into heated rivals who desire nothing more than become the lone buck standing.

Also, I’m not certain that this should’ve been called a Bambi movie. It was clearly more about the Great Prince than about Bambi himself. We did see Bambi come of age to the point where he was able to fight off a pack of roving mans... er, dogs, but the Great Prince grew the most over the course of the movie. He started out uncomfortable around Bambi and acted intimidated by the young fawn, but by the end of the movie, he had accepted Bambi as his own flesh and blood. It became an emotional attachment for him rather than an academic fact that Bambi was his son. It reminded me of Captain Picard’s attitude towards children over the course of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Hey, wait, so that’s where I know the Great Prince from. Neat.

So there you have it. Bambi II. You know going into it that none of the characters will die, but you watch it anyway because it’s cute. And yes, at the beginning, I wanted to throw the Great Prince off a cliff into a stampede, but his attitude did improve. Although it didn’t need to be made, I can appreciate it for what it was, a story about the acceptance of parenthood that just happened to use the backdrop of a famous, beloved Disney movie to tell it.

animated cartoon Bambi 2 © Disney
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Bambi 2
3.04 stars / 12 ratings
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