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review by Bobby Blakey


Throughout the years there have been numerous iterations of the story of Pinocchio, but none as beloved as the 1940 animated Disney classic. Now director Robert Zemeckis is reteaming with his iconic Forest Gump, Cast Away and Polar Express star Tom Hanks to bring the animated feature to life. The film features a great cast including Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Benjamin Evan Ainsworth, Cynthia Erivo, Keegan-Michael Key, Lorraine Bracco, and Luke Evans. Could this latest live adaptation deliver the magic or will it fail to grant its wish?


Pinocchio follows the beloved tale of a wooden puppet who embarks on a thrilling adventure to become a real boy. Geppetto, the wood carver who builds and treats Pinocchio as if he were his own son who is guided by Jiminy Cricket as well as his "conscience the Blue Fairy.


Going into these live action adaptations I’m always curious to what they chose to change or adapt to make it work in the real world. Unlike a lot of people I have actually really enjoyed most of the live action films so was ready for this one. I was never a big Pinocchio fan, but still dig the original film. Heading into this one it is hit and miss, but most of that has to do with your willingness to going all in.


Tom Hanks is always great and it’s no different here, but will say since it is pretty much more of a shot to shot live action he does come off a bit softer than I would have expected. Zemeckis has opted to bring the majority of the film to exact life as opposed to mixing it up a little like some have while also including some new characters. This is both good and bad depending on how you are seeing the film in its final form.


Pinocchio looks directly out of the animated feature which is awesome, but also makes it a bit harder to forget that we are in a live action adaptation when he is alone. With the cartoon having characters like Honest John works seeing a fox in clothing, but in live action it struggles. There is no real explanation to it to make it work in this world you just have to accept it and doesn’t always work despite going right along with the original source material.


I was ready to just let it all happen and coming right out of re-watching the original works to perfection in that regard. Everything you want from the original is here and handled perfectly just doesn’t always translate well to the real world. Despite that if you are willing to let that story in all its magic and adventure be what it is then it was rather enjoyable.


Decide for yourself and check out Pinocchio streaming now on Disney+    

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