The Bottom Line
Released in 1981, The Fox and the Hound arrived at a time when Disney was floundering in the animation market. The studio was still a few years away from their big comeback picture, 1989’s The Little Mermaid, and the next few years would see the release of clunkers like 1985’s The Black Cauldron and 1988’s Oliver & Co. The Fox and the Hound marked an obvious effort by Disney to return to the easygoing charm of earlier films like 1941’s Dumbo and 1950’s Cinderella, which the movie, for the most part, does manage to achieve – as it comes off as a delightfully old-fashioned tale of friendship that benefits from stellar voice work by Kurt Russell and Mickey Rooney. (The Fox and the Hound 2, on the other hand, is a typically pointless straight-to-video effort that seems to have been designed to capitalize on its predecessor’s good name.)
- Two movies for the price of one
- Crisp 1080p Blu-ray transfer
- Sequel is extremely underwhelming
- Disappointing extras
- Featuring the voices of Kurt Russell, Mickey Rooney, Corey Feldman, Reba McEntire, Patrick Swayze, Jonah Bobo, and Stephen Root
- Directed by Ted Berman, Richard Rich, and Art Stevens (The Fox and the Hound), and Jim Kammerud (The Fox and the Hound 2)
- Rated G
- Bu-ray Release Date: August 9, 2011
Guide Review – ‘The Fox and the Hound/The Fox and the Hound 2’ Blu-ray Review
The Fox and the Hound follows a young fox named Tod (Mickey Rooney) as he’s adopted by a kind old woman after his mother is killed by a hunter. Tod eventually comes to know a scrappy hound dog named Copper (Kurt Russell), although their friendship tested is they grow older and are expected to fulfill their respective roles of predator (Copper) and prey (Tod). The straight-to-video sequel, released in 2006, further explores the two characters’ fun-loving adolescence, with an emphasis placed on the pair’s ongoing encounters with a band of performing dogs that includes Patrick Swayze’s Cash and Vicki Lawrence’s Granny Rose.
The Bonus Features
The biggest attraction here is the upgrade in both films’ visual presentation, as Disney has disappointingly skimped on the supplemental materials. The studio has curiously chosen to place both movies on one Blu-ray disc, with the set’s remaining two discs holding separate DVD copies of the films. The high-definition disc contains only one short featurette, “Unlikely Friends.” Running seven minutes, “Unlikely Friends” takes a look at the various animals in nature that just don’t seem to get along. It’s about as pointless as it sounds.
The next item, which is found on disc two, is another seven-minute featurette. This one’s titled “Passing the Baton,” and it essentially explores the relationship between Disney’s older and younger animators. (The second disc also includes a “Best of Friends” sing-along.) The third and final disc contains a 10-minute featurette entitled “Backstage Disney: The Making of the Music,” which takes a look at how the various songs in The Fox and the Hound 2 were conceived and recorded. Finally, there’s a music video for Lucas Grabeel’s “You Know I Will.”