I really enjoyed Atlantis: The Lost Empire
as a kid. I had a chance to watch it again recently as an adult. While Atlantis
may be one of the black sheep of the Disney cannon, it's still quite enjoyable.
First and foremost, what I enjoyed about this movie is the visual aspect. It's not just that Mike Mignola contributed to the character design, and the animation reflects his blocky, elongated style. The film producers busted hump to make Atlantis look unique.
They have their own artistic styles, fashions, hairstyles and alphabet and language, which are not based on any past or existing culture. In short, Atlantis is believable as a living and breathing—but not thriving!—culture.
is from the very start an action movie. After the introduction, the pacing of the movie is tight. The backstory with Atlantis and Milo's grandfather's adventures is woven in without tedious exposition scenes. And, thank God, there are no songs.
The only flaws I could find in this movie were the Fridge Logic
about why the Atlantians couldn't read their own writing and that the Face Heel Turn
was pretty easy to spot coming. Neither of these issues were damning, though, because the good guys were well characterized and the viewer could sympathize with them even though these plot developments might have seemed a bit predictable or fridgey.
Atlantis is much different than the usual Disney animated feature, but it's still a pretty good movie. I would give it four stars out of five.