The Signature Collection of Disney releases began with the studio’s first full-length animated feature, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, so it only makes sense to reach back into the vault and dust off another classic with that film’s successor, Pinocchio. The heartwarming tale of the marionette who dreams of being a real boy and takes advice from a talking cricket is back on Blu-Ray and for the first time ever, Digital HD.
Thanks to a painstaking frame-by-frame remastering process, Pinocchio has never looked better. The colors are vibrant, the character animation is incredibly fluid, and the effects – particularly water and smoke – look absolutely stunning. Many film historians consider Pinocchio to be one of Walt Disney’s most impressive technical achievements, and this gorgeous restoration makes it difficult to argue with that opinion. The audio has also been cleaned up considerably, but don’t expect miracles in this department, as the quality of the original recordings wasn’t exactly pristine.
The Signature Collection release also includes a solid collection of bonus features, including the stellar audio commentary from Disney Legend Eric Goldberg, film critic Leonard Maltin, and film historian J.B. Kaufman that graced the previous 2009 release. In fact, most of the supplements from that release are available here, along with new features that include The Pinocchio Project: When You Wish Upon a Star, an updated version of the film’s iconic song from JR Aquino, Tanner Patrick, and Alex G; In Walt’s Words – Pinocchio, a series of audio interviews and archival footage; and a classic short featuring Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.
Pinocchio: The Signature Collection is an excellent addition to any Disney fan’s library, but if you already own the 3-disc release from 2009, there’s not much incentive to double-dip. The audio and video transfers are identical to the previous version, and the new supplements don’t really add much value to the already extensive offerings presented in the 70th Anniversary edition. But if Pinocchio hasn’t yet earned a spot on your shelf, then you’ll be hard pressed to find a better value.
Disney's timeless tale of the wooden puppet who dreams of being a real boy has never looked better, and although the special features aren't as impressive as the 2009 release, the advent of a Digital HD copy might make this worth an extra purchase for previous buyers.