20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Title: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
Year: 1954
Length: 127 minutes
Director: Richard Fleischer
Writer: Earl Felton, based on the novel by Jules Verne
Starring: Kirk Douglas, James Mason, Paul Lukas, Peter Lorre
Music: Paul J. Smith
Distinctions: Oscars for Best Art Direction/Set Decoration (color) and Best Special Effects; Oscar nomination for Best Editing

My reaction
Synopsis: three 19th-century men are captured by a mad submarine captain
How I saw it: on video (rented from Netflix), yesterday
Concept: Good.
Story: Indifferent. A basically good story, but it could have been more focused.
Characters: Good.
Dialog: Good.
Pacing: Indifferent.
Cinematography: Good.
Special effects/design: Great.
Acting: Good.
Music: Bad. The score is pretty good, but between “A Whale of a Tale” and Nemo’s blaring organ music, I just have to take points off.
Subjective Rating: 7/10 (Good). Surprisingly dark for a Disney movie. It could have been a lot better, though; the dramatic tension almost disappears once they get on board the Nautilus.  My wife (who just read the book) says the changes they made are frustrating.
Objective Rating: 2.7/4 (Good).


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