Western Animation / The King and the Mockingbird

A classic French animated film (French title: Le Roi et l'oiseau), with one of the longest development times in animation history; even longer than The Thief and the Cobbler. Although the total amount of years is less when you consider that the film was made in two parts: 1948-1952 and 1977-1979, a total of 6 or so years.

It is considered a major inspiration by Hayao Miyazaki.


Tropes related to the Film:

  • 0% Approval Rating: King Charles; "He detested everyone, and everyone in the kingdom detested him."
  • Adaptation Expansion: For Hans Christian Andersen's The Sheperdess and the Chimney Sweep, which was notably lacking in the giant robot department.
  • Animal Talk: At first, the mockingbird roars to speak to the lions, then talks to them so the viewers understand.
  • Art Initiates Life: Three paintings and one statue come to life over the course of the film, but after a little while the film seems to forget this and just treats them like real people.
  • Art Shift: The lions seem to shift between at least three different models.
  • Bad Boss: King Charles.
  • The Beast Master: The blind man.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Real King Charles.
  • Bishōnen: The Chimney Sweep.
  • Blow You Away: The robot's mouth contains a turbofan which is used to give the king a Disney Death.
  • The Caligula: King Charles.
  • Camp Straight: The king has some rather ambiguous mannerisms.
  • Commedia dell'Arte: The Sheperdess and the Chimney Sweep are the Lovers, King Charles is the Captain, the mockingbird is Arlecchino and the blind man is Pierrot.
  • Crusading Widower: The mockingbird.
  • Disney Villain Death: An interesting variation as it's an horizontal one.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: The real King Charles and the police chief.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: King Charles and the blind man.
  • Evil Twin: Well, even more evil than the original.
  • Faux Affably Evil: King Charles' portrait.
  • Guile Hero: The mockingbird.
  • Humans Are Flawed: An incredibly subtle example. Notice how the portrait characters are idealized in comparison to the comically portrayed humans? This is especially evident with the bumbling King Charles and his dangerously competent self-portrait.
  • Humongous Mecha: King Charles chases the Shepherdess and the Chimney Sweep through the lower city with a giant robot.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: King Charles. Justified due to him being cross-eyed.
  • Instant Awesome, Just Add Mecha: You wouldn't expect a giant robot to show up in a story written by Jacques Prévert, but there it is anyway.
  • Kick the Dog: A bad habit of King Charles (averted with his actual dog).
  • Knight of Cerebus: Arguably, King Charles's self portrait, who lacks the cross-eyes and is more cool-headed than the original when he replaces him.
  • Large Ham: The mockingbird.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Turns out that feeding the blind man to the lions wasn't such a great idea.
  • Malevolent Mugshot: King Charles puts his portrait everywhere in the upper city. Everywhere.
  • Motifs: Observant viewers will notice the imprisonment motif prevalent throughout the film.
    • The entire film takes place in King Charles' castle: no one except the mockingbird is shown to leave the place until it's finally torn down.
    • King Charles is established as a(n incompetent) hunter, and has a museum dedicated to sculptures of his supposed exploits. His self portrait hunts for the Sheperdress and the Chimney Sweep throughout the castle; the latter two even find themselves in the museum.
    • Various animals are locked up in cages: the monkeys in the zoo, the big cats and bears in the dungeon; etc. Even the mockingbird's home resembles a bird cage.
    • One of the mockingbird's children, a yellow bird, repeatedly finds himself entrapped in the same yellow cage. The final scene is the giant robot freeing the bird from the cage, and smashing it once and for all.
  • Nice Hat: Several characters including the mockingbird, the Sheperdess and King Charles' portrait.
    • The mockingbird later switches his for the robot pilot's hat.
  • Off Model: Due to the long span between the films start and finish, old and new animation is used to mix the film together. One obvious example is the scene with the lions, where they change appearance between cuts!
  • Overly-Long Elevator Gag: King Charles has a ridiculously long elevator, with an attendant listing off every floor.
  • Overly Long Name: King Charles 5 and 3 make 8 and 8 make 16th of Tachycardia.
  • Papa Wolf: The mockingbird, due to his wife being killed by the king.
  • Running Gag: The yellow chick getting caught in a trap (even after the climax).
  • Scenery Porn: The locations are absolutely gorgeous, sometimes being reminiscent of Chirico's paintings.
  • Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: The mockingbird initially acts more like a Troll to King Charles until the Sheperdess and the Chimney Sweep are involved but then, it's not real King Charles anymore.
  • State Sec: The police, though they're about as efficient as Thompson and Thomson.
  • Starter Villain: Real King Charles, who arguably doubles as a Villain Protagonist for the movie's first minutes.
  • Talking Animal: The mockingbird.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The Police Chief, who reveals himself from behind to cheer the wedding after he said yes in place of the Sheperdess. His boss rewards him accordingly.
  • Trap Door: Exaggerated, King Charles can open a Trap Door absolutely anywhere in the entire upper city; they even fit the size of whoever he wants to get rid of. At some point a trap door goes as far as actively pursuing its target through the room!
  • Villainous Crush: King Charles's portrait with the Sheperdess.
  • The Villain Sucks Song: Supplied by the mockingbird.
  • Walking Spoiler: There are actually two King Charles: the real one who's smug but clearly incompetent, and the self-portrait that replaces him and actually backs up his pride.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: The robot is controlled from a tiny windowless compartment in its back (the pilot can't even see what's happening in front).
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: This happens to everyone that King Charles drops down a hole most notably King Charles himself, who is dropped down a hole by a painting of him who comes to life, assumes his role, and is treated as if he was the king from that point onward. Also, King Charles's dog.
  • Your Size May Vary: either the robot growas in size after destroying the city, or it was reduced to very fine rubble.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/WesternAnimation/TheKingAndTheMockingbird