YMMV / Bambi

  • Adaptation Displacement: Par the course for just about anything adapted by Disney, the film is much more well known than the original Felix Salten book. It's rather strange that few people know it was based on a book since it mentions in the opening credits that the movie was based on Felix Salten's story (then again, most people don't pay much attention to credits in the first place). Not only that, it's a serious, gritty book. Most people, though, would assume that it's a pop-up book or something. The poster for the movie was even a picture of the book.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • The hunter. A bloodthirsty Evil Poacher who hunts for the fun of killing animals, an ordinary sport hunter with no evil intent (less likely, given how it was and still is illegal to shoot deer out of season), or just a poor, hungry man desperate to fill the cooking pot?
    • We never see them so...maybe it's not even a man?
    • For that matter, is it even the same hunter(s) from one encounter to the next?
    • Also, did the hunter deliberately target a doe to shoot, or was Bambi's mother mistaken for a buck because her head wasn't clearly in view?
    • The midquel elevates Ronno potentially from merely a sinister looking stag who's out to mate (if forcefully), to a jealous rival of Bambi in almost every area. Does he genuinely target Faline as a mate, or does he take her out of spite or even intentionally to anger Bambi into another tussle as he did in the midquel?
    • In nature, a buck following a doe in heat sometimes enters the territory of another buck. This begs the question, did Bambi and Ronno even know each other as old rivals? Was it Ronno forcing Bambi into fighting with him? Or was it simply Bambi having followed Faline into Ronno's territory by accident?
  • Angst? What Angst?: Bambi's mother's death. Bambi and everyone else seems to get over it pretty darn quick, especially since right after Bambi's father tells him of her death, it instantly cuts to spring with birds singing happily. Bambi's mom is never even brought up again. The midquel tries to avert this, but both Bambi and his father seem to be past the grieving stage by the end of the story, which takes place over about five days.
  • Awesome Art: This was one of the first Disney movies to have animals (in this case, deer) brought to the studio for the artists to closely reference for more accurate depictions of their movement, as opposed to the deer in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which look like flour sacks with long legsnote . The result is easily one of the most beautiful films Disney ever made.
  • Awesome Music: A killer combo of Frank Churchill's unforgettable songs and Edward Plumb's mantovani cue-filled score results in Bambi having a very memorable soundtrack.
    • "Love is a song that never ends", the theme of the first film. It even pops up as an instrumental leitmotif in the midquel.
    • "I Bring You A Song", the sensual, haunting love theme between Bambi and Faline.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Watch the scenes of the forest animals fleeing for their lives while their home burns and collapses around them, desperately seeking shelter, calling for loved ones...then remember the year this came out.
  • Ear Worm: "Drip drip drop, little April showers..."
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Thumper got his own merchandise line. At one point during the eighties he was even given consideration as a Breakout Character for his own feature film.
    • Same goes for his mate, Miss Bunny, who also has her own merchandise line in Japan, especially at Tokyo Disneyland.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Ronno. Especially in Bambi II.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: In the original novel, Bambi learns that he must live all alone to live long and safe. He learns this one from the (supposedly) wise Great Prince, of all deer.
  • Faux Symbolism: The scene where Bambi goes with his father after learning about his mother's death symbolizes the end of his childhood and innocence. This was exactly what Disney was going for with that scene.
  • Franchise Original Sin: While obviously suffering far less from Disneyfication than either two films, Felix Salten's sequel book Bambi's Children is also Lighter and Softer from the original novelnote  and even mildly betrays some elements of realism for the sake of characterization (Bambi for example is characterized as a warmer and less distant father, much as the Great Prince was in Bambi II). It even goes a step further than the films do by humanizing Man.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The cream-colored rabbit named Miss Bunny who Thumper falls in love with is surprisingly popular in Japan. With tons of merchandise featuring her (sometimes even alongside the child Thumper).
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Almost all the brief interactions between Bambi and his father the Great Prince in the movie are this as a result of the Interquel, Bambi II, which shown that following the death of Bambi's mother, the Great Prince mellowed his aloof demeanour and formed a very close loving bond with son.
  • Ho Yay: Between Bambi and Flower when they were little. They even have a Meet Cute, for God's sake, as explained by Unshaved Mouse here. Flower even named his child after Bambi, the guy he, as far as we know, only shared two scenes with (in the first film, at least).
  • It Was His Sled: Bambi's mother dies.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Thumper's "If you can't say something nice, don't say nothing at all," line is used a lot nowadays, for obvious reasons.
    • Within the studio, the line "Man is in the forest" became a tongue-in-cheek code amongst the animators for when Walt Disney was coming by to look at their work.
  • Moe:
    • Bambi (and by extension Faline, the two fawns they have as adults, and even Ronno to some degree) is likely the cutest white-tailed deer fawn you'll ever see. There's a reason Osamu Tezuka used him as the basis for the distinctive large eye style of anime.
    • Thumper and Flower are also adorable Ridiculously Cute Critters.
  • Narm Charm: The child voice actors aren't the best actors, but their performances are certainly cute. Their acting skills are just unpolished enough that they sound refreshingly like the little kids they really are — Bambi's "Mother? Whatwegonna~dotoday?" line is a prime example.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Ronno in the original film. He comes literally out of nowhere, has no dialogue, no real characterization and isn't even named, and only has a couple minutes of screen time—but what a scene it is!
    • Also, the poor bird that gets frightened out of her hiding spot when the hunters arrive, pretty much for the same reason.
    • The scene where the cream-colored rabbit flirts with Thumper. While both return in the ending, the rabbit named Miss Bunny is surprisingly popular in Japan and despite only being in a short scene.
  • Periphery Demographic: It's well documented that his film was popular with, of all people, men shipping out to fight in World War II. Pictures of the characters were common as the nose art of planes and tanks. A few munition factories even stamped pictures of Thumper to blockbuster bombs.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: Disney using the trope at its most extreme. The midquel, with more humanized characterizations and 'zanier' humor, is toned down slightly, though it's hardly even close to a subversion. This is considered the draw appeal to many fans.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • Like you cannot even imagine. It can be especially easy to miss the single reference to Flower's gender early on. And then puberty kicks in, and their genders are much more obvious.
    • Bambi, because of his feminine appearance. However, all gender confusion about him is cleared up when he gets older, due to growing antlers. His gender confusion is even lampshaded by Ronno in the Midquel:
      Ronno: Bambi? Isn't that a girl's name?
    • There is the picture book of the Disney movie that actually called Flower a female, and made "her" a ''mother''!
  • Vindicated by History: Thanks to extremely mixed reception from critics of the time period, and the war going on at the time, Bambi, along with Fantasia and Pinocchio before it, was a huge box office flop when it first unspooled in theaters. Nowadays, it's one of Disney's most financially successful and critically well received movies.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Bambi had more multiplane camera shots than any other film in Disney's history, and they are used to stunning effect, especially during the final shot of the opening, the "Little April Showers" sequence, and the ending. And then there's the painstakingly elaborate effects animation of the climatic forest fire...
  • The Woobie: Bambi infamously losing his mother as a fawn solidified him as one of Disney's codifying Woobies. The Interquel only furthers this due to his somewhat contentious upbringing by his father afterwards.
    • That poor pheasant who was driven to hysteria and shot.
  • Woolseyism: The Norwegian re-dub changes the line Thumper says in the beginning from: "Sure, let's go with that." to "Sure, that would rather fit!", giving a plenty better reason to use the "Bambi" name.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/BAMBI