Blu-ray Review: Lady and the Tramp Diamond Edition

Lady and the Tramp Diamond Edition Blu-ray boxSTUDIO: Walt Disney Studios | DIRECTORS: Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske | CAST: Peggy Lee, Barbara Luddy, Larry Roberts
BLU-RAY RELEASE DATE: 2/7/2012 | DVD RELEASE DATE: 3/27/2012 | Price: DVD $29.99, Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.99, Blu-ray/DVD/Digital Copy $44.99, standard-def download $29.99, high-def download $39.99
BONUSES: deleted scenes, deleted song, featurettes, Second Screen
SPECS: G | 76 min. | Animated family | 2.55:1 aspect ratio | 7.1 DTS-HD audio | English, French, Spanish subtitles

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

One of the most romantic and sweet movies in Disney’s vault, Lady and the Tramp is a welcome treat on Blu-ray. The classic animated film looks brilliant in high-definition, the colors bright and sumptuous and the 2D hand-drawn animation is sharp, with the right amount of softness when needed.

Lady and the TrampOriginally released in 1955, Lady and the Tramp tells a timeless tale that children — both young and the young at heart — can still enjoy. The mistreatment of the dogs in this movie, because of misunderstand and prejeduice, could just as easily happen today as in the 1950s.

The film’s story revolves around pretty cocker spaniel Lady (Barbara Luddy, Sleeping Beauty), who’s the much-loved pet of Jim (Lee Millar) and Darling Dear (singer Peggy Lee). When Darling gives birth to a baby, Lady doesn’t get as much attention as she used to, and is shut out altogether by Aunt Sarah, who blames Lady when the house is destroyed by her own Siamese cats. Aunt Sarah puts a muzzle on Lady and she runs away, getting help from a street dog called Tramp. Tramp, of course, shows Lady how to really live — on the streets — but she longs to go home.

As charming as Tramp, Lady and their friends Jock and Trusty are, the brilliance of the movie is how well it balances the good and the bad, even referring to the worst part of getting caught in the dog pound. And the dogs’ search for love, security and a home is familiar to all.

The movie has been on DVD in various editions before, but this new Blu-ray does have a few special features that haven’t been available previously. The best is the fun deleted scenes section, which shows three new scenes in storyboard form accompanied by voiceover and action narration. The scenes are substantial: A whole section with two other dogs who are vying for Lady’s love, one a Russian hound who boasts of his great battles; another with Lady listening as Jim talks about all the things his baby could grow up to be; and a sequence in with Lady gets caught in a stage show with performing poodles.

The disc also offers a quick deleted song; a featurette about Lady and the Tramp archival material in the Disney Museum hosted by Diane Disney Miller, Walt’s daughter; and Second Screen, which allows you to get more extras, such as concept art, on your computer or tablet synced up to the movie as it plays on your TV.

As fun as the new special features are, the best extras, at least for adult viewers who have enjoyed Lady and the Tramp since they were children, are the classic making-of featurettes that were on the 50th Anniversary DVD. All aspects of the film’s production are discussed, from its inspiration (which originally came from former Disney employee Joe Grant, not Walt as some have been led to believe), its animation, its music, its voice cast, the making of the beaver’s whistle and the influence of actress/singer Peggy Lee, who was instrumental in making sure the character Trusty didn’t die in the movie.

Plus plenty more… Probably most enjoyable for children is the Puppypedia featurette, a modern piece about dogs hosted by Fred Willard (TV’s Everybody Loves Raymond).

Disney always handles its classic films with care when they launch on Blu-ray, and Lady and Tramp is no different. This set is a one to be added to any Disney movie lover’s collection.

Buy or Rent Lady and the Tramp Diamond Edition
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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.