Movie Review – ‘Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

After sharing my Disney reviews on the ‘Countdown to Christmas’ DVD last week, my parents and I watched ‘Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas’ on Disney+! I love this anthology film! I used to watch it more than once over the Christmas period when I had it on VHS in the early 2000s. It’s such a treat!

‘Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas’ was released in 1999 as a direct-to-video Christmas anthology film. It even won the award for Best Animated Feature Film at the 5th Kecskemét Animation Film Festival in 1999. I had no idea that this was the case when it came to revisiting this anthology film. 😀

The film has three stories in it. There’s ‘Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas’ featuring Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, and Huey, Dewey and Louie. There’s ‘A Very Goofy Christmas’ featuring Goofy and his son Max from the Disney show ‘Goof Troop’. And there’s ‘Mickey and Minnie’s Gift of the Magi’ featuring Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Pluto. All of the three stories are excellent in this film. 🙂

The narrator for this film is Kelsey Grammer, whom you may know for playing Frasier in ‘Cheers’ as well as his spin-off show ‘Frasier’. He also voiced Stinky Pete in ‘Toy Story 2’ and played Beast in ‘X-Men: The Last Stand’. I had no idea Kesley Grammer was the narrator of this film when I first saw it. 😀

The stories themselves have special Christmas messages in them. In ‘Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas’, Huey, Dewey and Louie enjoy one Christmas Day, opening their presents, whilst having to share it with their Uncle Donald, Aunt Daisy, Uncle Scrooge and Aunt Gertie throughout the day. 🙂

The three boys later go to bed and wish upon a wishing star for it to be Christmas every day. Their wish is granted and they find themselves caught in a ‘Groundhog Day’ loop where it’s Christmas every day. Although enjoying it at first, after a few days, they’re tired of it being Christmas every day.

Interestingly, the story was inspired by the 1892 short story called ‘Christmas Every Day’ by William Dean Howells. I like how the message is put across about the three boys Huey, Dewey and Louie needing to learn the importance of Christmas and how they spend it with their family on the day.

In the second tale, ‘A Very Goofy Christmas’, Goofy and his son Max mail out a letter in time for Santa Claus. But Max learns from their neighbour Pete that Santa might not exist, saying that it’s ‘impossible’ for him to fly about the world in one night. Max begins having doubts believing in Santa.

Throughout the story, Goofy tries to convince his son Max that Santa Claus is real, even though he posed as Santa for some kids at another house. I like how the story of father and son is put across in this segment of the film, although I’m not sure on how they answered whether Santa’s real or not. 😐

The story could’ve gone down the route of how ‘Doctor Who’s ‘Last Christmas’ did it with the question hanging in the air about Santa being a dream or not. Interestingly, this story precedes the cartoon show ‘Goof Troop’ since Pete’s son PJ doesn’t appear in it. Yes, I did watch ‘Goof Troop’!!! 😀

The third and final story of the film ‘Mickey and Minnie’s Gift of the Magi’ is a touching story about Mickey and Minnie buying gifts for each other at Christmas whilst having to part with the things they cherish. Mickey gives up a harmonica to buy a golden chain for Minnie’s heirloom, which is a watch.

In turn, Minnie gives up her gold watch to buy a case for Mickey’s harmonica. It’s touching how that plays out in the story and how it’s resolved when they give gifts to each other. I’ve seen this happen in a ‘Sesame Street’ Christmas Special once between Ernie and Bert, but that got handled differently.

‘Christmas Eve on Sesame Street’ it was called. In fact, both the Ernie and Bert story in that as well as Mickey and Minnie’s here are based on the 1905 short story ‘The Gift of the Magi’ by O. Henry. Amazing what you discover, isn’t it? The story also features Pete, although I wonder if it is a different Pete. 😐

The film ends with a medley of various songs performed by the Disney characters. ‘Jingle Bells’ is sung by Mickey and Minnie with Pluto the dog, ‘Deck the Halls’ is sung by Goofy and Max and ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’ is sung by Donald, Daisy, Huey, Dewey and Louie. I like how the three sets of Disney characters from the three segments of the film unite at the end to close off the film. 🙂

‘Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas’ is a lovely festive Disney anthology film. I’m so glad to have revisited it on Disney+. In a time when things do seem bleak, especially by 2020’s standards – please keep safe – this is a Disney anthology film you’re bound to enjoy and be cheered up at Christmas. 😀

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂

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