Disney’s The Great Mouse Detective re-imagined the world of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famed Sherlock Holmes series as a playful adventure of sleuthing rodents. When a young mouse’s father is kidnapped, Basil of Baker Street, the great mouse detective, is called in to solve the case. Who could the villain be but none other than Professor Ratigan, Professor Moriarty’s pint sized, rat-faced doppleganger.
The Great Mouse Detective may not have the following of more popular Disney movies like Cinderella or Snow White, but it’s delightful adventure doesn’t skip a beat on the Disney magic. What the movie lacks in musical numbers, it more than makes up for with top-notch voice acting. Horror master Vincent Price voices Ratigan. Also, Alan Young, who voiced Scrooge McDuck on Duck Tales, appears as kidnapped father, Hiram Flaversham. You can’t beat that.
The closing scene where Professor Ratigan is chasing Basil inside the clock tower is exciting to watch in 1080p. This was one of the first Disney scenes to use computer graphics instead of standard cell animation. The level of layered detail in this scene is great to watch. However, going into and out of this scene reminds you your watching old-time animation. At certain times, color saturation is inconsistent, especially during the street scenes. This is the first time The Great Mouse Detective has made it to Blu-ray but it doesn’t look as though the movie got the TLC it needed during the HD transfer.
This release has been deemed the Mystery in the Mist edition. There are no new special features. The “So you think you can sleuth” feature was made before interactive media so the faux quiz gives up the answer without giving you a chance to get the questions wrong. If you haven’t seen the “Making-of” featurette yet, you’ll enjoy watching Disney’s animators talk about the creative process in going to CG during the clock tower scene.
Typically, Disney goes all out for its Diamond Edition releases. So we’ll probably have to wait some years to get a definitive release on The Great Mouse Detective.