There were nights when the winds of the Etherium, so inviting in their promise of flight and freedom, made one's spirit soar.
For the Disney Animated Canon
's 43rd entry, the studio proudly presents: Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island
- IN SPACE! Literally
With great gusto at that, containing: Space-sailing
ships, aliens, robots, cyborgs
and Space Pirates
. Telling: one boy's search for the treasure of the evil pirate Flint, the Loot of a Thousand Worlds. Starring: The human Jim Hawkins
, the spry cat-lady Captain Amelia
, a bookish dog-like alien named Dr. Delbert Doppler
, the fiendish
cybernetic shaven bear Silver
, and a metamorphosing
pink blob named Morph
in a steampunk
alternate pirate universe
This Disney film
was released in an overcrowded market—right on the heels of the second Harry Potter
Film and less than a week after Die Another Day
. It may also have suffered due to the Disney Marketing Department's decision to advertise it primarily during time slots occupied by kids' shows
, when its premise and content are more suitable for teenage audiences, especially regarding the absent father angle.
Whatever the reason, many fans blame this film for rudely ending Disney's confidence in hand-drawn animation for features, and which is what started the decline in their production of such films, closing their studios until 2009
. Today, it's become a Cult Film
thanks to its intricate blend of CGI and traditional animation.
It portrays a father-son bond between the two main characters and some amazingly choreographed action sequences. According to Word of God
, this film was made to be Disney's big film for "single parent, Generation X" kids, as reflected in the darker family subtext
. While it performed well with critics, the film flopped and flopped hard
financially. As said previously, though, the film has gained a new lease on life thanks to DVD and television.
This movie provides examples of:
- Combat Stilettos: Captain Amelia dons a thigh-high pair of these as part of her outfit.
- Composite Character: Doctor Delbert Doppler fulfills the roles of both Doctor Livesey and Squire Trelawney.
- Cool Gate: The portal.
- Cool Starship: The RLS Legacy. Her sails seem to have aspects of solar sails, photovoltaic cells, and ram scoops, all packaged up in a spacefaring 18th century frigate.
- Creator Cameo: John Musker and Ron Clements appear giving Jim and Doppler directions during the scene at the spaceport.
- Cryptic Conversation: B.E.N.'s patchwork memory about the planet.
- Cyber Punk/Steam Punk: A nice blend, with designs for the costumes, machinery, and ships that look distinctly Steam Punk in origin mixed with power, concepts, and designs from Cyber Punk.
- Death Glare: A very nicely done one from Jim to B.E.N.
If I'm not back in five minutes, leave without me. Ben:
I am not leaving my buddy Jimmy! (Death Glare) Ben:
... Unless he looks at me like that.
- Also, Captain Amelia gives Doctor Doppler a quick one before turning around then grabbing his jaw to stop him from babbling.
- Silver himself gives a non comedic example to Jim. If not for a convenient explosion, he probably would have done more than just glare.
- The entire negotiation between Jim and Silver, when Silver tries to convince him to give over the map and join him in sharing the treasure, basically consists of Jim giving him a several minute long Death Glare while Silver tries (and fails) to soften him up.
- Deadpan Snarker: Pretty much everyone aboard the R.L.S. Legacy. Justified in Dr. Doppler's case, considering who his voice actor is.
- Desert Island: B.E.N. is marooned on Treasure Planet.
- Despair Speech: Dr. Doppler gives a short one when Captain Amelia is seriously injured and he can't help her, outpouring his emotions in a tremendous run-on sentence, seriously believing all is lost.
Dr. Doppler: Dang it, Jim. I'm an astronomer, not a doctor! I mean, I am a doctor but I'm not that kind of doctor I have a doctorate; it's not the same thing, you can't help people with a doctorate, you just sit there and you're useless!
- Disappeared Dad: One of the few—if only—Disney movies where the parent actually walks out on his family rather than dying.
- Dismissing a Compliment: Amelia tells Silver he can stow the flattery.
- Distant Prologue: The opening sequence takes place 12 years before the story's main events.
- Disney Death: Averted with Mr. Arrow, which wouldn't be such a big deal if a different Disney-affiliated Treasure Island adaptation hadn't played it straight.
- Disney Dog Fight
- Disneyfication: Silver isn't anywhere as nice in the original book. And Billy Bones was a most unwelcome guest at the Benbow, staying several months before he died. And Mr. Arrow was a drunk.
- Disney Villain Death: Misters Hands, Dogbreath and Mackriki when they fall from the longboat room. Misters Pigors and Turnbuckle fall towards the exploding planet's core. Last but not least, Mr. Scroop: in his case, a villain falls up.
- Dogfaces: Doppler.
- Emo Teen: Jim is, rather understandably, pretty down in the beginning.
- Everything's Better with Spinning/When Things Spin, Science Happens: The map, and the core of Treasure Planet.
- Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: B.E.N, when he gets his missing piece back.
B.E.N: It's all flooding back! All my memories! Right up until Flint pulled my memory circuit so I could never tell anybody about his booby trap!
[B.E.N makes a face, an explosion is heard]
B.E.N: (Quietly) Speaking of which...
- Expy: Mr. Onyx in Battle at Procyon looks almost exactly like Mr. Arrow and even has the same attitude.
- Eyes Do Not Belong There: The eyes of one particular alien pirate (according to the artbook, his name is Mackriki) are in his throat.
- Face Heel Revolving Door: Long John Silver.
- Face-Heel Turn: Turnbuckle, Amelia's helmsman.
- Face Palm: No less than three:
- A Double Facepalm when Jim and Silver give up protesting about having to work together.
- Doppler's Freudian Slip (see below).
- Jim also gives us one as B.E.N cheerfully leaves to disable the Legacy's laser cannons.
- Fake-Out Opening: The movie begins with young Jim reading a book about pirates and treasure.
- Mad Oracle: The hermit robot, B.E.N., is a bit scatterbrained from being marooned on a desert planet. Literally having lost his "mind" helps too. Although not so much as lost, as Flint "holding onto it" for him.
- Malevolent Architecture: Flint's trove explodes, taking Treasure Planet with it.
- Massive Numbered Siblings: Of Amelia and Delbert's children, they have three daughters and one son.
- Match Cut: The "I'm Still here" sequence has many of these.
- Meaningful Echo:
Silver: Morph, I have a job for you. Keep an eye on this here pup.
Jim: Yeah, but I'm gonna change all that.
- Meaningful Name: Mr. Hands has four hands.
- A Minor Kidroduction: We see three year old Jim and his pop-up book before jumping twelve years later and getting on with the plot.
- Missing Trailer Scene: Missing dialogue from the theatrical trailer:
Silver: You think a pup like you can take on the likes of me?!
Jim: Watch me!
- Mistaken Identity: Dr. Doppler mistakenly, but understandably, assumes that Mr. Arrow is the captain of the RLS Legacy.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Mr. Hands.
- My Life Flashed Before My Eyes:
B.E.N.: Jimmy, I—I don't know about you, but I'm starting to see my life pass in front of my eyes. At least, I think it's my life. WAS I EVER DANCING WITH AN ANDROID NAMED LUPE?!
- Mythology Gag: When the pirate crew accuses Silver of having a soft spot for Jim, Silver excuses himself by claiming he's only trying to avoid suspicion by cozying up to him. While this isn't true for the film's Silver, it perfectly describes Long John Silver from the original novel.
- Never Trust a Title: No part of Battle at Procyon actually takes place at Procyon, not even the skirmish maps in Procyon territory. It's lampshaded in the credits.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Doppler hires all the movie's antagonists in one pirate crew.
- No Indoor Voice: B.E.N. It nearly gets Jim and company killed a few times.
- No Sense of Personal Space: B.E.N. has this in spades, much to the annoyance of Jim.
- The Not-Love Interest: Jim and Silver's developing father-son relationship is by far and away the most important arc in the movie.
- Not That Kind of Doctor: Trope Namer. Dr. Doppler seems to know basic first aid, but he's useless beyond that, and he knows it.
- Obviously Evil: Scroop. Also, Captain Flint from the introduction story.
- Oh, Crap: Ben gets one of these moments when he goes to disable the laser cannons.
Disable a few laser cannons, what is the big deal? All we gotta do is find that one little wire... [Ben opens some electrical doors, revealing a mess of wires] Ben:
- Meltdown (the fat pirate) also fits this trope:
Doppler: Excuse me, brutish pirate.
Doppler: Yes, you. I have a question. Is it that your body is too massive for your teeny-tiny head... or is it that your head is too teeny-tiny for your big, fat body?!
Meltdown: [Grabs Doppler] I PUMMEL YOU GOOD!
Doppler: Yes, I'm sure you will, but before you do, I have one more question! [pulls out a gun and points it at pirate] Is this yours?
Meltdown: [Stares at the gun in shock] Uhhhhhh....
- OOC Is Serious Business: Silver, toward the end. He always tried to sweet talk The Captain. Then...
- Outrun the Fireball: Two examples:
- The black hole sequence, where they actually use the fireball itself to give them enough power to outrun it.
- The climax, where they sail through the portal and to Montressor spaceport just ahead of Treasure Planet exploding behind them.
- Papa Wolf: John Silver. He becomes fiercely protective of Jim and essentially gives up everything, including his life's dream for him in the end.
- Parental Abandonment: This is Jim's motivation for befriending Silver.
- Parental Substitute: Silver is a mentor and father-figure to Jim. Considering how the story goes, this is one of the more turbulent examples, but it all worked out in the most satisfying way possible.
- Petting Zoo People: Most of the cast!
- Pirate Parrot: Morph is an IN SPACE example, imitating form as well as speech.
- Planet of Hats: The DVD extras reveal that Montressor is a "mining planet". There is a mining operation which Jim flies through early in the film, but otherwise this isn't elaborated on.
- Sailor's Ponytail: Jim sports one.
- Schizo Tech: It combines 19th-century sailing technology with technology that appears to have been made centuries into the future.
- Screen Shake: Happens when Silver screams "NOW!!!" at Morph after ordering Morph, who is hovering uncertainly beside Jim, to come.
- Self-Destruct Mechanism: Played so straight, as with any story involving a forgotten treasure trove.
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Amelia, Dr. Doppler, and even Silver all provide quite a bit of this.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Every time the movie takes a dramatic or serious turn, Morph disappears. Not B.E.N., but that's because he's plot important. Most noticeable when Morph is sucked away in a pipe while Jim takes out the Big Bad.
- Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Though he's not completely absent from the trailers, it's pretty clear from the promotional material that Doppler must have been considered the least marketable character. Perhaps most tellingly, the VHS and DVD cover used the same poster as shown above on this page, except edited to remove Doppler and replace him with Silver (and put a very goofy smile on Amelia's face). Note that Silver already is on the original poster, just farther in the background and not in the main group of heroes - his place was taken by Scroop on the edited poster.
- Sky Surfing: Jim's favorite high-adrenaline hobby.
- Slipped the Ropes: Done hilariously with Dr. Doppler. Turns out, he has abnormally thin wrists.
- The Sociopath: Scroop is one whose portrayal is disturbingly realistic.
- Spit Take: Inverted by Silver when Arrow tells him that Jim will be working with him.
- Spot of Tea: Amelia, Of Course.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Silver is surprisingly good at this.
- Steam Punk: Oodles of it. The overall aesthetic style, along with Space Is an Ocean. Mixed in a very interesting way with Cyber Punk.
- Stiff Upper Lip: The Captain.
- Strong Family Resemblance: Sarah is the older, female version of her teen son, Jim Hawkins.
- And for the children of Delbert and Amelia: The girls (despite each having a different hair color) are a spitting image of their mother, especially the one with Amelia's hair color. And their son is an exact replica of his father.
- Swiss Army Appendage: John Silver's bionic arm.
- Take My Hand: Silver to Jim in the climax.
- Take That: As Dr. Delbert Doppler begins to freak out over Captain Amelia's worsening condition in the aftermath of escaping the ship after the pirates take it over, he goes on a rant that he's not an actual doctor, claiming that having a Doctorate is useless when it comes to actually helping people.
- That's No Moon!:
- Treasure Planet turns out to be a giant artificial construct, with Flint's trove hidden in the core, and the whole planet was rigged to explode should anyone try to take it.
- The spaceport was intentionally built to resemble a crescent moon from a distance.