Disney's 36th animated tale is taken from a Chinese fable. The Emperor (Morita) sends out an order that one man from every family must become a soldier in order to repel the advances of Shan-Yu (Ferrer) and his army of Huns. But Mulan's (Wen) father (Oh) is ill and she's afraid he won't return, so she decides to take his place and disguises herself as a warrior. The family's ancestral spirits enlist a guardian--the pint-sized dragon, Mushu (Murphy)--as Mulan goes off to war. The two mainstays of Disney's previous animated features--the songs and the comedy-relief sidekicks--turn out to be the weak links in this story. While Murphy's Mushu does have the funniest lines, he doesn't quite fit the more serious tone. Impressive visuals, and careful characterization by the voice actors make up for any formulaic missteps so that adults, as well as kids, should enjoy the show.
Buena Vista Home Entertainment, 500 S. Buena Vista St., Burbank, CA 91521-1120, Toll-free: 800-723-4763, URL: http://www.bvhe.com
Available on VHS, DVD
Running time 87 minutes.
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