Review by: Fusion3600
Posted on: July 29th, 2013
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Plot: What’s it about?

Arthur is a young man with big dreams, but he is often called Wart and not given much chance to shine. But he sticks to his hopes of becoming a squire someday, no matter what people think and that pushes him ahead toward his goals. He soon meets Merlin, a powerful magician with some memory problems and soon, the two become friends. Merlin sees much potential in young Wart and tries to give him an education, which should allow him to do whatever he wishes. At the same time, a lot of men have traveled to see a swordstuck in a rock, as whomever removes it will be named the next King of England. Although it seems like a simple enough task, the strongest and smartest men in the kingdom have all failed, with no one having any luck in the least. So of course, it seems impossible that young Wart would be able to remove the bewitched blade from that rock, but with Merlin’s help and some courage, you never know what might happen…

This movie remains one of Disney’s lower profile animated features, even fifty years after it was released. While The Sword in the Stone isn’t held at the same level as some other Disney animated movies, it is a lot of fun and has some terrific visuals. As with most Disney productions, the story here is a familiar one, but with some new twists. I love the medieval setting and the overall Camelot feel, as well as the magical elements. The underdog story is one just about anyone can relate to, watching Wart rise from his humble roots for a chance at greatness. I will say that The Sword in the Stone isn’t as kinetic or visually active as some of Disney’s other films, so the pace is slower and the animation isn’t as intricate. Even so, the movie offers solid entertainment and animation, especially for a production that is over five decades old. This release offers up a digital restoration, a never before seen alternate open sequence, and some other cool extras. So if you’re a fan of Disney or animation in general, this superb release of The Sword in the Stone is well worth adding to your personal collection.

Video: How does it look?

The Sword in the Stone is presented in 1.75:1 widescreen. The visuals here look quite good, thanks in part to a new digital restoration. The image is clean, but retains detail and depth, so the restoration process wasn’t overdone. The color snap to life and really shine here, which caught my attention right off the bat. The animation is simplistic, especially when compared to today’s animated features, but it looks as good as possible in this release. All of the detail is present and the visuals are more refined than ever, so fans should be satisfied.

Audio: How does it sound?

You’ll find a DTS HD 5.1 soundtrack here and while it isn’t bombastic, it handles the film’s needs well enough. The surround presence isn’t all that memorable, but some scenes have a nice extra punch. So don’t expect a wild ride of audio dynamite, as this is a more dated, reserved presentation. I do feel like this is due to the material however, not this new soundtrack. The basics are covered and the movie sounds good, which is what matters. The dialogue is always well mixed, so no vocals wind up lost in the shuffle. This release also includes French and Spanish language tracks, as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, and French.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This release includes an alternate open sequence, a couple of sing-a-long options, and two bonus animated shorts.

The Sword in the Stone (Blu-ray)
Wolfgang Reitherman
79 min.

  • (1.75:1)
  • Video Codec: AVC
  • Audio: DTS HD Master
  • 1 Disc Set
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Audio Commentary
  • Deleted Scene(s)
  • Featurette
  • Documentary
  • Digital Copy