Review: The Fox and the Hound/The Fox and the Hound II Blu-ray/DVD

The Fox and the Hound Blu-ray boxSTUDIO: Disney | DIRECTOR: Ted Berman, Richard Rich, Art Stevens/Jim Kammerud | CAST: Mickey Rooney, Kurt Russell, Reba McEntire, Patrick Swayze, Jeff Foxworthy, Vicki Lawrence
RELEASE DATE: 8/9/2011 | PRICE: DVD $29.99, Blu-ray/DVD $39.99
BONUSES: featurettes, music video, sing-along
SPECS: G | 83 min./69 min. | Animated family | 1.66:1 aspect ratio/1.78:1 aspect ratio | 5.1 DTS-HD audio | English, French and Spanish subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5 dishes): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

The Fox and the HoundNot one of Disney’s biggest animated films, 1981’s The Fox and the Hound is nevertheless sweet and touching, and it arrived on Blu-ray with the 2006 second movie in the franchise on the same disc.

The films tell the stories of Tod (the fox) and Copper (the hound), who become friends as puppies even though Copper’s owner, Amos Slade, is training the dog to hunt foxes. In the original film, that training puts the friends at odds when they’re older and Tod and Copper learn how important their friendship is. The 2006 movie follows the two friends when they’re still pups and Copper gets chosen to join a singing dogs chorus at the carnival, much to the chagrin of the star, Reba McEntire’s Dixie.

Both films look fine on high-definition, although the style of the newer The Fox and the Hound II is closer to the animation and story style of today’s animated movies and seems to shine a little more.

The sound is good too, from the heartbreaking yelps of the animals when they’re in trouble in the first film to the adorable singing dogs in the second.

The Blu-ray isn’t as loaded with special features as other Disney discs, but it has its share. The only new bonus is the featurette “Unlikely Friends.” Designed for younger viewers, it has a Saturday morning TV show feel. The piece tells  stories of real-life animals that are supposed to be enemies really making friends, like a cat and a mouse and a chihuahua and a lion.

The Blu-ray package also comes with two DVD discs, one for each film, and the rest of the special features are on these discs. It’s a shame they’re not repeated on the Blu-ray so viewers don’t have to swap discs to get the different extras. But  these bonuses are also on previous DVD versions, so if these movies are already in your library, you’ve seen them.

The featurette that will most interest adults is the brief (just over six minutes) making-of called “Pass the Baton” on the DVD of the original movie. Although it has been on earlier discs, the featurette is an interesting look at the film’s production, showing interviews with the artists, footage of the voice cast including Pearl Bailey recording their characters’ voices, and the artists sketching the lovable fox and hound.

The final featurette, on the Fox and the Hound 2 DVD, delves into the film’s country music, which is much more prevalent in this movie than the original. Another brief piece (about 10 minutes), the making-of includes interviews with the singers and songwriters, including footage of Trisha Yearwood singing “Blue Beyond.”

 

Buy or Rent The Fox and the Hound/The Fox and the Hound 2 30th Anniversary 2-Movie Collection
Amazon graphic
DVD | DVD/Blu-ray Combo |
Blu-ray/DVD Combo
DVD Empire graphicDVD | DVD/Blu-ray Combo |
Blu-ray/DVD Combo
Movies Unlimited graphicDVD | DVD/Blu-ray Combo | Blu-ray/DVD ComboNetflix graphic

About S. Clark

Sam Clark is the former Managing Editor/Online Editor of Video Business magazine. With 19 years experience in journalism, 12 in the home entertainment industry, Sam has been hooked on movies on since she saw E.T. then stared into the sky waiting to meet her own friendly alien. Thanks to her husband’s shared love of movies, Sam reviews Blu-ray discs in a true home theater, with a 118-inch screen, projector and cushy recliners with cup holders.