31 Days of Christmas Movies Marathon: Day 14 – Winnie The Pooh: A Very Merry Pooh Year

Welcome to my 31 Days of Christmas movie marathon.  This is a feature where I watch a different Christmas movie every day from now until Christmas.  The rules are simple: The movie has to be something I haven’t already seen and I must watch at least one Christmas-themed movie a day from now until December 25th.  They’ll be some bad ones and hopefully a lot of great ones.  Why put myself through this?  Because it’s a good way to catch up on a lot of Christmas movies and a good way to satisfy my OCD.

On the 14th day of Christmas my true love gave to me… Winnie The Pooh: A Very Merry Pooh Year

The first movie I ever remember seeing in a theater was Winnie The Pooh.  Ever since then, the honey-loving Bear – along with all of his Hundred Acre Wood’s pals – have always had a special place in my cinematic heart.

This year the gang returned to the silver screen with a new adventure consisting of 60 minutes of wholesome, pop-cultureless unadulterated hand drawn fun – just the way I remember them.  The film was fantastic and will probably end up in my top 20 by the end of the year, which is no small feat considering I have already seen close to 200 films released in 2011.  So, having never had a negative experience with the Pooh Bear I was under the impression that a bad Pooh movie just doesn’t exist.

I was wrong.

First of all, I think I missed something from Pooh’s adventures of the early 80s til now, because Owl was nowhere to be found.  Seriously, you mean to tell me that a film starring some of the most beloved children’s characters in literature would exclude a Pooh family mainstay?  Whoever’s bone-headed decision this was, it was an unacceptable one – especially in a movie that takes place during Christmas and New Year’s Eve and makes it a point to preach the importance of not losing your friends.

Secondly, that stupid gofer character, simply known as Gofer, is back.  I remember him from the Saturday morning cartoons.  Didn’t like him then; don’t like him now.  This rodent has no personality and adds nothing to the overall dynamic of the Pooh crew.  Oh wait, he does have one “thing”.  He can release a high-pitched whistle noise whenever he says a word with the letter s in it – how charming.  The only thing this character adds to the movie is his ability to make me yell at my television whenever he’s about to speak, “shut the fuck up, annoying Gofer”!  It seems unfair that he would be in this movie and not Owl.

Aside from the poor casting choices, my only other complaint was in the movie’s pacing.  The plot progression moved along so fast that it was as if all the character’s were on speed.  This was very non-Pooh like.

Also, the transitioning from a Christmas adventure into a New Year’s adventure was just awkward.  Winnie The Pooh has several successful shorts clocking in around the 25-minute mark, so there was no reason why this movie couldn’t have been split into separate shorter features.

I’m not sure if these stories exist in any of A.A. Milne’s stories, but if it does, which I seriously doubt, the screenwriters did a lousy job of writing it for the straight-to-DVD release.  It was as if the writers forgot to take their ADD meds.

This was not the Pooh I knew.  Oh man, that last sentence sure sounds funny.

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