Your dreams...come true...
The woodworker Geppetto creates a puppet, which he names Pinocchio. Before going to bed, he notices the wishing star and wishes on it that Pinocchio would become a real boy. The Blue Fairy hears his wish and brings Pinocchio to life. She promises him that he will become a real boy if he can prove himself brave, truthful, and unselfish, and she assigns Jiminy Cricket to be his guiding conscience in the meantime.
The opening song "When You Wish Upon a Star" is one of the most well-known and beloved songs of any Disney movie, and has since become the theme song for the Disney Theme Parks. A brief excerpt of the melody is used in Disney's Vanity Plate (the one with the castle) at the beginning of many of their movies.
There is an unofficial sequel titled Pinocchio and the Emperor of the Night, as well as a licensed Platform Game released in 1995 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Genesis and Game Boy. In The '90s, Disney created a Made-for-TV Movie musical, Geppetto, that switched the P.O.V. character to that of the toymaker and focused on his Character Development as he learns how to be a good father. Featuring songs from the original alongside new Stephen Schwartz numbers, it was adapted for the amateur theater circuit as My Son Pinocchio in The New '10s.
Disney's Pinocchio provides examples of:
- Abnormal Limb Rotation Range: Pinocchio when Geppetto examines him before he was about to go to school.
- Pinocchio is just full of this in general. He shows it off in the Stromboli performance.
- Adaptational Heroism: In the original novel, Pinocchio was a quite bratty and disobedient child who knew right from wrong but still chose wrong more often, despite learning his lesson in the end. Disney's version portrays him in a much more sympathetic manner: here, he is a generally well-meaning but naive child who is talked into bad things due to his innocence.
- Adaptational Karma: Inverted with the Fox and the Cat. Unlike the book, in the film they avoid all punishment. There was originally a scene where the two were going to be arrested for their crimes, but this was cut from the final script.
- Adaptational Nice Guy:
- Pinocchio lacks the mean, bratty traits of his literary counterpart.
- Collodi's Geppetto was clearly a loving father, but more of a Grumpy Old Man and not very friendly. Here, is far nicer and better tempered.
- The Cricket in the book was not the cheerful, friendly cricket of this film. He was stern whenever he admonished Pinocchio.
- Adaptational Villainy: Stromboli's incarnation in the original novel, Mangiafuoco/Fire-Eater, was not nearly as bad as he was in the movie. While he did attempt to use Pinocchio for firewood, that was only after Pinocchio wrecked his puppet show, and when he learned of Pinocchio's plight regarding Geppetto he took pity on him, even giving him money to help pay for what the puppet needed.
- Adaptation Distillation: This film leaves out many of the subplots of the book.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: The Blue Fairy, originally called the Fairy with Blue Hair, has her hair changed from blue to blonde. Instead, her eyes and dress are blue.
- Adaptation Expansion: In the original story, Jiminy Cricket was a minor character and was never even given a proper name, being referred to simply as the "talking cricket". He has since become something of the anthropomorphic (well, cricket-morphic) personification of conscience.
- Adaptation Name Change: Mangiafuoco (Fire-eater) to Stromboli, the Fairy with Blue Hair to the Blue Fairy. Lampwick (Lucignolo) also has his name translated as "Candlewick" in some English versions of the book.
- Adjective Animal Alehouse: The Red Lobster Inn, which is where the Coachman tends to hang out whenever he's not kidnapping boys, taking them to Pleasure Island, turning them into donkeys and shipping them to either the salt mines or the circus.
- Adult Fear:
- Geppetto's son goes to school and doesn't come home. Hearing the agony in his voice as he paces around his kitchen is enough to make parents whose children like to play hide-and-seek in department store racks flashback a little.Geppetto: What could have happened to him? Where could he be at this hour? I better go out again and look for him...
- After their raft is destroyed, a weakened Geppetto pleads for Pinocchio to save himself. He wakes up on the beach to find that his son drowned saving his life.
- Geppetto's son goes to school and doesn't come home. Hearing the agony in his voice as he paces around his kitchen is enough to make parents whose children like to play hide-and-seek in department store racks flashback a little.
- Aesop Collateral Damage: When Pinocchio plays hooky and ends up on Pleasure Island, Geppetto gets trapped inside Monstro the whale so his adopted son can learn the lesson about being a good boy.
- Alcohol Hic: One of the cuckoo clocks features an inebriated character whose hiccups are its chimes.
- Gideon also hiccups while guzzling beer at the Red Lobster Inn - the only vocalizations from Mel Blanc that were left in the film after Disney decided to make the character mute.
- All Men Are Perverts: Jiminy Cricket goes from angrily not watching Pinocchio's show to excitedly watching it with eyeglasses on when he sees the French girl puppets doing the kick dance.
- All Part of the Show: Stromboli becomes so livid with rage at Pinocchio's initially messing up on his puppet show performance, tripping and falling down the stairs as he did, that he becomes borderline violent toward the puppet, but when he hears the audience laughing, he calms down and tries to make it look like it's all part of the act. "Cute kid!" Stromboli says of the puppet.
- Ambiguously Human: The Coachman.
- Amusement Park of Doom: Pleasure Island.
- Anachronism Stew: Pleasure Island.
- And I'm the Queen of Sheba: Jiminy Cricket's outraged reaction after Pinocchio sticks up for Lampwick:Pinocchio: Don't hurt him, Jiminy. He's my best friend.
Jiminy: "Your best friend"? And what am I, just your conscience? Okay, that settles it!
- And I Must Scream: Done to children by the demonic Coachman. They have mouths, but all they can do is bray...trapped in a nightmare of slavery, torture and anguish that will end only with their Cruel and Unusual Death.
- And Your Reward Is Clothes: When Jiminy offers to be Pinocchio's conscience, the fairy rewards his generosity by giving him a nice set of new clothes to replace the rags he wears at the start of the movie.
- An Aesop: Pleasure Island is meant to be this, especially in the original Collodi novel. If you actively avoid school and bettering your education, you'll end up ignorant (donkey = the famous donkey-eared cap used in late 1800s schools to humiliate dumb students) and won't go far in life, having to do grunt work in order to make a (meager) living.
- Angrish: Stromboli unleashes quite a bit of this.
- Animate Inanimate Object: The eponymous Pinocchio.
- Animated Musical: As usual.
- Artistic License – Biology:
- Jiminy Cricket bears very little, if any, resemblance to an actual cricket. To be fair, however, Jiminy was originally depicted as an actual (that is, less anthropomorphized) cricket with toothed legs and waving antennae. But Walt wanted something more likable. So he assigned animator Ward Kimball to redesign the cricket. Kimball whittled away at any and all cricket-like appendages until Jiminy became, in Kimball's words, "a little man with an egg head and no ears. And the only thing that makes him a cricket is because we call him one."
- Monstro the whale looks like a demonic cross between a sperm whale and a baleen whale; the body shape is that of a sperm whale, but he has a head much too wide and teeth on both jaws, when real sperm whale have laterally-flattened heads and only have teeth on their very thin lower jaw. He also has belly pleats, which is a trait of baleen whales. He's seen sleeping at the bottom of the ocean - whales don't sleep that way, or else they would drown.note
- Artistic License – Physics: While underwater, Pinocchio floats as expected. However, once he ties a rock to himself, he suddenly stops floating and can simply walk along the sea floor, dragging the rock behind him. And then he suddenly starts floating like normal again.
- Ascended Extra: Jiminy Cricket in the original story, he was a nameless cricket who was squashed by the title character early on and appeared later as a ghost. In the Disney version, he was given the name Jiminy Cricket and promoted to narrator. Not only did he practically steal the movie away from its title character, but he's gone on to host/narrate other Disney films, short subjects, and theme park shows. He's also a notable character in several of the Kingdom Hearts games.
- Figaro was based off a minor cat in the book which Geppetto had. He has shown up in a lot of other Disney material whenever a character needs a cat.
- Jiminy went on to become a recurring character in the Disney Animated Canon (appearing again in Fun and Fancy Free), as well as host a series of educational cartoons in the 1950s called Im No Fool, and his theme music became the theme for Disney in general.
- And is now played in Once Upon a Time by the same actor who was Revan and Shepard's "voice of conscience".
- Awesomeness by Analysis: Pinocchio comes up with the idea of building a big fire on the boat to get Monstro to sneeze.
- Ax-Crazy: The Coachman. Despite his friendly appearance, he is a sadistic maniac who has a rather twisted idea of punishment.
- Badass Grandpa: Geppetto. The scene where Monstro eats the tuna is a fishing opportunity. This is born out of desperation, but it's still a pretty cool moment.
- Bad-Guy Bar: The Red Lobster Inn, where Honest John and Gideon discuss business with the Coachman.
- Bad Guys Play Pool: One of the vices on Pleasure Island.
- Bad Liar: Pinocchio, when the Blue Fairy rescues him from Stromboli's wagon:Blue Fairy: Pinocchio, why didn't you go to school?
Jiminy Cricket [prompting Pinocchio, whispering]: Go ahead. Tell her.
Pinocchio: I was going to school 'til I met somebody.
Blue Fairy: Met somebody?
Pinocchio: Yeah, two big monsters, with big green eyes! [His nose starts to grow] Why, I...
Blue Fairy: Monsters? Weren't you afraid?
Pinocchio: No, ma'am, but they tied me in a big sack. [His nose grows longer]
Blue Fairy: You don't say? And where was Sir Jiminy?
Pinocchio: Huh? Oh, Jiminy...
Jiminy Cricket: Psst! Leave me out of this.
Pinocchio: They put him in a little sack. [His nose grows even longer]
Blue Fairy: No!
Pinocchio: Yeah! [His long nose sprouts flowers]
Blue Fairy: How did you escape?
Pinocchio: I didn't - they chopped me into firewood! [A birds' nest forms at the end of Pinocchio's nose]
Pinocchio: Oh look, my nose! What's happened?
Blue Fairy: Perhaps you haven't been telling the truth, Pinocchio.
Jiminy Cricket: ''Perhaps''?
Pinocchio: Oh, but I have! Every single word! [The leaves and the birds' nest wither away, with the birds flying away]
- Baleful Polymorph: The boys in Pleasure Island turn into jackasses and get forced into labor.
- Ball of Light Transformation: The Blue Fairy first appears as a bright light that looks like a star before taking the form of a beautiful woman. Then she departs in the same way.
- Barefoot Cartoon Animal: "Honest" John Worthington Foulfellow and Gideon.
- Bare Your Midriff: Gideon is a rare male example.
- Batman Can Breathe in Space: Pinocchio and Jiminy can breathe, and speak, underwater.
- In fairness, Pinocchio's still made of wood at this stage - would he even need to breathe?
- Geppetto and Figaro have no excuse, however. They're implied to have lived in Monstro's belly, at the bottom of the sea, for days if not weeks.
- Beard of Evil: Stromboli, the puppet master. He's a very unpleasant man backstage.
- Become a Real Boy: This is Pinocchio's goal after he's brought to life, and after saving Geppetto from Monstro, he succeeds.
- Belly Dancer: Released concept art showed that one possible puppet design for Stromboli's show was to be modeled after an Arabian dancer◊.
- Big Bad: The film has a Big Bad Ensemble: Stromboli, The Coachman and Monstro.
- Big Good: The Blue Fairy, who brings Pinocchio to life.
- Geppetto can be seen as this as well.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: Stromboli has them.
- Big "SHUT UP!": Jiminy Cricket can't sleep because of all the ticking clocks in Geppetto's shop, so he yells "QUIET!" They all stop.
- Also used by Stromboli after he imprisons Pinocchio in the cage and Pinocchio cries out to be let out.Stromboli: QUIET! SHUT UP! Before I knock-a you silly!
- Also used by Stromboli after he imprisons Pinocchio in the cage and Pinocchio cries out to be let out.
- Bittersweet Ending: Pinocchio gets reunited with Geppetto and becomes a real boy, but the Coachman is never punished. And those hundreds of innocent children who were taken from their families, turned into donkeys, and sold into slavery? They're still donkeys. No one comes to their rescue.
- Blue Is Heroic: The Blue Fairy, who counts as a Big Good.
- Pinocchio himself, since he wears a blue tie, and Jiminy, who wears a blue top hat.
- Body Horror: The donkey transformation scene.
- Book Ends: The movie both starts and ends with Pinocchio and Geppetto dancing, although the first time Pinocchio's still an inanimate puppet, and the last time he's a real boy. Jiminy Cricket even lampshades it by saying, "Well, this is about where I came in!"
- The film also starts and ends with "When You Wish Upon A Star" being sung, although it's only two lines sung at the end.
- The film starts and ends with Jiminy Breaking the Fourth Wall.
- Bootstrapped Theme: "When You Wish Upon a Star" for Disney in general.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Jiminy does this at the beginning after singing "When You Wish Upon A Star", and again briefly at the end, lampshading the Book Ends example.
- Breakout Character: Jiminy Cricket. He has become a representative of Disney second only to Mickey himself, and about on par with Tinker Bell.
- Bumbling Sidekick: Gideon to "Honest" John.
- Carnivore Confusion: When waiting for Pinocchio to come back for dinner, Figaro the pet cat is chastised by the goldfish, Cleo, to not eat his dinner just yet, as they are to wait Pinocchio. Said dinner is a fish.
- Cats Are Mean: Gideon, Honest John's feline stooge. At least once, he tries to hit Pinocchio on the head with a mallet, only to be stopped by the fox.Honest John: No, no, stupid! (snatches mallet) Don't be crude! (whacks Giddy on the head with mallet)
- Figaro, however, downplays this. While not mean, he does become very impatient around dinner time while Geppetto is worrying about Pinocchio. He tells Cleo and Figaro to not eat until he gets back. When he leaves, Figaro decides to start eating until Cleo reminds him they can't eat until their owner arrives. Figaro remembers this and once again tries to eat but then turns frustrated and folds both his arms with an angry expression.
- Clam Trap: Jiminy Cricket asks a clam about Monstro the whale, but it snaps shut and traps him inside. He gets out inside a bubble as the clam digs down.
- Constantly Curious: Pinocchio is full of questions. Although, when he doesn't know what school is, let alone what other children are, one would think one would question his ability to get to school all by himself.
- Contrived Clumsiness: Honest John gets Pinocchio's attention by tripping him up with his cane.
- Cool Old Guy: Geppetto.
- Covers Always Lie: Most of the posters or video covers look pretty cheery. The film itself, on the other hand, is pretty dark for being so early in Disney's animated canon.
- Covert Pervert: Jiminy Cricket, believe it or not.
- Crapsaccharine World: It's as bright, colorful, and detailed as any other Disney film of its time, but some of the tropes on this page tell a much darker story.
- On a smaller scale, Pleasure Island. It may seem like the best place in the world for naughty children...but in truth it's actually a living nightmare.
- Creating Life Is Awesome: The titular character is created by the joint efforts of Geppetto (who built his body) and The Blue Fairy (who gave him life). It is all treated as a good thing.
- Cub Cues Protective Parent: Jiminy is being hassled by a little fish while in the ocean floor. He starts to shoo it away when its mother appears.
- Cunning Like a Fox: Honest John.
- Death by Adaptation: The Coachman in the video game.
- Delusions of Eloquence: Honest John Foulfellow, when pretending to give Pinocchio an examination before guiding him to Pleasure Island:Honest John: We must diagnose this case at once, ahem. Quick, Doctor, your notebook. [Gideon pretends to write down notes] Bless my soul! Hmm... mm-hmm... My my. Just as I thought: A slight touch of monetary complications with bucolic semi-lunar contraptions of the flying trapezius. Mm-hmm. Say "hippopotamus".
Honest John: I knew it! Compound transmission of the pandemonium with percussion of spasmodic frantic disintegration. Close your eyes! What do you see?
Honest John: Open them! Now what do you see? [Honest John holds his spotted handkerchief in front of Pinocchio's eyes]
Honest John [He pretends to listen to Pinocchio's heart]: Aha! Now, that heart. Oh, my goodness! Palpitating syncopation of the killer diller with a wicky-wacky stamping of the floyjoy.
- Demoted to Extra: In the book, the Blue Fairy had a much bigger role, being a mother figure and fulfilling the role of his conscience. Here, most of her actions are done by the cricket character.
- Digital Destruction: The 1992 restoration shifted the color scheme too closely to red tones.note
- Disney Death: Pinocchio loses consciousness rescuing Geppetto from Monstro the whale. However, by proving himself in doing so, the Blue Fairy finally makes him a real boy, also bringing him back to life.
- The original book was more grim (and considering how nightmarish this movie can get, that's saying something!) Pinocchio is constantly a little jerk, Geppetto is more temperamental. The very first appearance of the Fairy is ghastly: when Pinocchio begs her for help when he's in danger, she refuses by claiming to be dead and waiting for a hearse to take her away. The Cat and the Fox (Gideon and Honest John) try to steal money from Pinocchio disguised as street bandits and later hanged Pinocchio from a big tree. When the Cricket first appears, Pinocchio kills it with a hammer (then we see it again like a ghost and again alive in the house of the Fairy). Lampwick dies from overwork in donkey form in a gut wrenching scene near the end of the novel. Oh, and Pinocchio bites off the Cat's paw.
- The original Geppetto was a very, very poor carpenter in Tuscany. The setting of the film looks more like Tyrol, with its quainter, more "storybook" architecture and mountains, and Geppetto's house is more cozy and charming.
- Disproportionate Retribution: The boys who go to Pleasure Island are turned into Donkeys and sold into slavery, apparently as punishment for drinking, smoking, gambling and...playing billiards?
- Double Take:
- A few of them.Geppetto: Who's there?
Pinocchio: It's me.
Geppetto: Oh, it's me. ... Wh-HUH?!
- And this one.Honest John: (upon seeing Pinocchio for the first time) A little wooden boy. Now— a wooden boy?!
- And when the Coachman tells of his scheme to Honest John:Coachman: I takes 'em to Pleasure Island.
Honest John: Ah, Pleasure Island. (beat; becomes alarmed) Pleasure Island?!
- A few of them.
- The Dreaded: Monstro, less a whale and more Leviathan incarnate. The mere mention of his name causes sea creatures to swim away in terror. Also the Coachman, if his Nightmare Face is any indication.
- Drunken Song: Honest John's reprise of "An Actor's Life For Me" at the Red Lobster Inn.
- Ear Worm: "Hi-Diddle-Dee-Dee" seems to be one In-Universe; Lampwick is heard whistling it during his time in the pool hall.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: The Blue Fairy flat-out spells it out for Pinocchio at the very beginning, and even Jiminy notes that it won't be an easy task."Prove yourself brave, truthful, and unselfish, and someday, you will be a real boy."
- Easily Forgiven: Pinocchio by the Blue Fairy in Stromboli's cage, after she sees through his lies and he fesses up to his mistakes.
- Enemy Eats Your Lunch: Sort of. Honest John eats Pinocchio's apple and gives the core back to him.
- Eureka Moment: Geppetto saying they will have a fire to cook some of the fish he previously caught gives Pinocchio the idea to use a fire to make Monstro sneeze and get them out of him.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Honest John and Gideon are perfectly fine with conning small children out of their money and freedom, and if one scene is to be believed, with doing hits as well. However, when the Coachman mentions taking boys to Pleasure Island, they're absolutely horrified. And when the Coachman assures them that the boys will never return as themselves and makes a Nightmare Face for emphasis, the fox and cat cower in fear. And yet, regardless of their morals, they trick Pinocchio into going there anyway, mainly because they're too scared to refuse the Coachman's proposition after that.
- Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The Coachman.
- Everybody Cries: During the scene before the Blue Fairy brings Pinocchio back to life as a real boy, Gepetto, Jiminy, Figaro, and Cleo all cry over Pinocchio's lifeless body back at home.
- Evil Laugh: Stromboli and The Coachman lashes out some of these (they are both voiced by the same actor, so the laugh sounds almost the same).
- Evil Overlooker: The Coachman and/or Stromboli and/or Monstro in some posters.
- Evil Puppeteer: Stromboli, who has his own circus of puppets and hires Pinocchio, but treats him badly: he underpays him, locks him up in a cage, and threatens to chop him into firewood.
- Exploited Trope: a bizarre example. Since this is a morality play for children, this world operates by some strange logic, such as the Space Whale Aesop that acting like a jackass will literally turn you into a donkey. The Coachman seeks to profit from this by luring children into a mischief-themed amusement park where they're encouraged to misbehave, and then selling them as livestock after they literally make jackasses of themselves.
- Extremely Short Timespan: It doesn't feel it, given the sprawling story it was adapted from, but the movie is strongly implied to take place within less than two days.
- Failed Dramatic Exit: After Pinnochio and Jiminy argue in the pool hall, Jiminy angrily tries to stomp away but falls into one of the holes on the table instead. When he finally leaves the room proper, his clothes are disheveled and twisted up from his previous fall.
- False Utopia: Pleasure Island, where the theme park turns into a place where kids do all sorts of sinful stuff like vandalizing buildings, smoking cigars, drinking beer, and playing in pool halls, only to end up making jackasses out of themselves and they get sent to slavery in the salt mines.
- Fat Bastard: Stromboli and the Coachman.
- Fate Worse than Death: See Baleful Polymorph.
- The ones who could still talk were thrown in a pen. The ones who could only make donkey noises were shipped off. Now remember what people use donkeys for; working in harsh environments, breeding more donkeys... In the original book, Pinocchio himself almost ends up skinned.
- This might fall under Disproportionate Retribution as well.
- Faux Affably Evil: "Honest John" and Stromboli.
- The Coachman as well: "Give a bad boy enough rope and he'll make a jackass of himself (laughs evilly)"
- Follow Your Heart: "When You Wish Upon a Star".
- Foreshadowing: We're first clued to Pleasure Island's actual nature when Honest John and Gideon are freaked out by the mention of it. Also, before the boys start being transformed into donkeys, look carefully at the chair Pinocchio is sitting on at the pool hall, it has a donkey face on the head. Further hints: the Coachman's dialogue stating that "They never come back... AS BOYS!" and our seeing a team of donkeys pulling his coach as he cracks the whip over them.
- Also, Honest John convinces Pinocchio to go to Pleasure Island by giving him his "ticket", which is an Ace of Spades card... Remember the Black Spot from Treasure Island? The real-life inspiration for that is the Ace of Spades, sometimes given to pirates to announce their imminent ruin.
- In the Storybook Opening, the books Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan can be seen in the background. Both would later become Disney films, and, in fact, both were in initial development at the time.
- Forgot He Was a Robot: Pinocchio is seen blushing, turning green from cigar smoke, and shedding tears (among other things) while he's still a puppet.
- Four-Fingered Hands: Pinocchio (never mind that poster). He gains an extra digit when he becomes a real boy. Jiminy, Honest John, Gideon, and the Coachman all have four fingered hands as well.
- Funny Background Moment: During "An Actor's Life For Me," Gideon ends up going in the wrong direction and has to catch up with the others.
- Furry Confusion: Features normal animals, Nearly Normal Animals, Funny Animals, and Petting Zoo People with little rhyme or reason as to the difference. For example, Figaro the pet cat and the mute Funny Animal Gideon the Cat.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
- In addition to Jiminy Cricket's Covert Pervert moment with getting a little too enamored of the risque marionettes performing on stage with Pinocchio, there's a moment earlier while he's in Geppetto's workshop in which he realizes one of the mechanical figurines against which he's leaning is of a shapely woman and he's got his hand planted on her bustle. He then promptly snatches it away and actually apologizes to her. Hello, Parental Bonus!
- Its a Blink-and-You-Miss-It moment, but when Pinocchio startles Gepetto, Figaro jumps up, right under his night shirt. No wonder Gepetto's gun goes off.
- When underwater, Jiminy weighs himself down with a rock by putting it down the front of his pants, and complains about a curious fish by complaining he has no more privacy than a goldfish. The stone makes a huge bulge in his pants, and Jiminy even shivers and calls it "chilly".
- All of the villains get off scot-free, despite of The Hays Code being in effect at that time.
- Getting Eaten Is Harmless: Pinocchio and Jimminy Cricket (following Geppetto) are swallowed by Monstro the whale but are all perfectly fine and later manage to escape.
- Go On Without Me: "Pinocchio, save yourself..."
- Also originally Lampwick was supposed to join Pinocchio and Jiminy in their escape but he is caught and he utters these words, some story book adaptations keep the scene.
- Gosh Dang It to Heck!: Averted. Jiminy Cricket calls Lampwick a jackass even BEFORE he learned of the whole "turning boys into donkeys" plot.
- HA HA HA – No: Stromboli does a terrifying version when Pinocchio mentions that he's going home to Geppetto and will be back in the morning. The showman laughs uproariously, scoops Pinocchio up, and then throws him in a birdcage and starts screaming at him.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Stromboli to be sure.
- Hammerspace: Gideon pulls the mallet he tries to hit Pinocchio with out of nowhere.
- Have a Gay Old Time:
- "What do I look like, a jackass?"
- "Hi-Diddle-Ee-Day, an actor's life is gay." Admittedly, this was long before the word gained its modern connotations.
- Heaven Above: The magical fairy who blesses Pinocchio with life lives within the wishing star. The Blue Fairy descends from her home in the heavens only when Gepetto prays up to the sky in his petition to be blessed with a son.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Pinocchio gives his life to save Geppetto from Monstro; don't worry, he gets better.
- Hidden Depths: Despite barely being a teenager, if that, Lampwick shows remarkable skill at pool, given the numerous trick-shots he plays. Makes you wonder how often he frequented bars.
- High-Dive Escape: Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket escape Pleasure Island by jumping off a cliff into the sea below.
- Homeless Hero: Jiminy Cricket starts out as a drifter, dressed in shabby clothes, sneaking into Gepetto's shop to warm himself by the fire.
- Honest Advisor: Jiminy Cricket.
- Innocently Insensitive: The Blue Fairy tells Pinocchio "Boys who won't be good might as well be wood", which seems rather harsh after Pinocchio has been told what Stromboli does to old marionettes.
- I Will Only Slow You Down: After Monstro destroys their raft, Geppetto tells Pinocchio to "save yourself" as he sinks under the water. Pinocchio gives his life getting him safely to shore, and even then Geppetto, still barely conscious, continues to say it.Geppetto: Pinocchio... save yourself. Don't mind me, son. Save yourself...
- Infant Immortality: Double-subverted with Pinocchio. He dies saving Geppetto from Monstro, and is mourned by Geppetto, Jiminy, Figaro and Cleo before being brought back to life as a real boy.
- Informed Species: Monstro doesn't look like any real species of whale. From the side he looks a bit like a sperm whale, but a sperm whale's jaw is narrow, unlike Monstro's shovel-jaw. Which, by the way, is pleated. Only rorquals (like the blue whale and humpback whale) have grooved lower jaws (but no teeth; instead they have baleen fringes). He looks like a demonic caricature of a whale; more like the biblical Leviathan than any real sea creature.
- In-Name-Only: Apart from a handful of characters and a few basic plot elements, the film really doesn't have much to do with the original novel by Collodi, arguably for the better.
- It Can Think: Monstro does have one thing in common with real cetaceans: He's pretty clever to pretend to be asleep in order to catch the school of tuna. Besides if he keeps on chasing Pinocchio and Geppetto, it's quite obvious he has a brain.
- Jerkass: Lampwick.
- Just Whistle: What Jiminy tells Pinocchio to do if ever he needs him. It becomes the basis for the song "Give a Little Whistle".
- Karma Houdini: In the book, the Cat (Gideon) lost a paw and became blind, while the Fox (Honest John) became lame and had to sell his own tail, and both are begging for food. Although there is no specific connection to their deeds, it is stated that they got all they deserved. In the film, there is no punishment, nor any suggestion that punishment will come their way.
- A planned scene that was ultimately deleted from the final film would have had him and Gideon get caught by the police after running into Pinocchio a third time. However this was adapted into a small book, Pinnochio's Promise where they are arrested by the police.
- Stromboli doesn't get any punishment other than not being able to use Pinocchio for his show - he even gets to keep all the money from the first night.
- The Coachman is not punished in the film; it is only in the SNES game that he is kicked off a cliff by Pinnochio.
- Kid Hero: Pinocchio.
- Kindhearted Cat Lover: Geppetto with his kitten Figaro.
- Large Ham: Stromboli's voice actor: "Going-a home-a to your father!" Also, Honest John's flamboyant gesturing.
- Laser-Guided Karma: The Blue Fairy remarks in her first appearance that as Geppetto has made so many others, he deserves to have his wish of Pinocchio becoming a real boy come true.
- Leitmotif: Jiminy gets his own theme that pops up quite a bit during the film.
- Licensed Game: Was adapted in 1996 into a fairly generic platformer for the Super NES, Game Boy, and Sega Genesis. And you actually get to kill the Coachman!
- Lions and Tigers and Humans... Oh, My!
- Literal Metaphor: A visual one. The boys on Pleasure Island figuratively make total jackasses of themselves, smoking and drinking and gambling and so on. Then they end up turning into literal jackasses.
- A subtler one, which is also a kind of Visual Pun: the scene in which Lampwick and Pinocchio play pool starts from outside, showing that the pool hall in which they're playing is shaped and painted like an 8-ball, and one of Lampwick's trick shots while he's ridiculing Jiminy Cricket sends the 8-ball careening into him. During most of that scene, he's got Jiminy behind the 8-ball, so to speak... just as the Coachman also has them behind the 8-ball, and is about to make his final play.
- Little Bit Beastly: Pinocchio looks like a puppet version of a Kemonomimi when he gains donkey ears and a tail while visiting Pleasure Island. He loses the donkey ears and donkey tail when he turns into a real boy.
- Make a Wish: When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are...
- Manly Tears: Shed by Geppetto and Jiminy when Pinocchio is seemingly dead at the end, before the Blue Fairy brings him back as a real boy.
- Mars Needs Women: Jiminy seems to have a preference for human(ish) women.
- Meaningful Echo: The conditions for Become a Real Boy are repeated in voiceover just as Pinocchio earns it.
- Meaningful Name: "Honest" John Worthington Foulfellow, referred only to Honest John in the actual film. Also, there is a volcano off the coast of Sicily called Mt. Stromboli; Stromboli in the film is also quite volcanic.
- Missed Him by That Much: When Geppetto is out looking for Pinocchio, Stromboli's wagon passes by him, and, unknown to him, Pinocchio is imprisoned in said wagon at that moment.
- Mixed Metaphor:
- Jiminy: You buttered your bread. Now sleep in it!note
- Coachman: "Give a bad boy enough rope and he'll make a jackass of himself!"
- Mood Whiplash: Pinocchio and Sromboli laughing together becoming this, combined with HA HA HA – No, when Pinocchio is suddenly thrown into a birdcage.
- The donkey transformation scene, in-universe. Lampwick doesn't realize it's happening to him until he laughs and it becomes a bray. Seconds later, when he does realize what's going on...
- Mundane Utility: After being partially turned into a donkey, Pinocchio proceeds to use his tail as a convenient piece of rope.
- My Grandma Can Do Better Than You:Lampwick: Ah, you smoke like me grandmother!
- Named by the Adaptation: The cricket, the fox and the cat and the whale had No Name Given in the book, here they're called Jiminy Cricket, Honest John Worthington Foulfellow, Gideon and Monstro.
- Nice Hat: Jiminy wears a classic top hat.
- Nightmare Face: The Coachman drops his Glamour at one point and pulls a ghastly one, combined with a truly chilling Evil Laugh. Honest John and Gideon looked scared shitless after that and they had very good reason.Coachman : The law... won't be a problem. You see, they never come back ... as BOYS!
- No More for Me: When Pinocchio sees Lampwick start to turn into a donkey, he nervously put his mug of beer aside, then tosses away his cigar. The implication is that the drink and cigars are what's transforming Lampwick, and Pinocchio swears them off in order not to follow suit. The very image of Pinocchio putting his beer aside is the trope image.
- Nobody Here but Us Statues: During "Little Wooden Head," Jiminy blends in with the clockwork performers on one of Geppetto's music boxes by moving up and down in time and singing.
- Non-Standard Character Design: The Blue Fairy is a remarkably realistically-drawn character in a film where all other human characters are cartoony looking. This is because while all the other characters were traditional hand-drawn cartoons, the Blue Fairy was rotoscoped — a live actress was filmed, and then the animator simply traced her directly from the frames of that film. This technique tends to produce the Uncanny Valley effect, which is usually considered an undesirable side effect, but in this case was intentionally harnessed to communicate the otherworldly nature of the character.
- Not Now, We're Too Busy Crying over You/Not Quite Dead: At the end, Geppetto is crying over the dead Pinocchio when the Blue Fairy brings him back to life and makes him a real boy:Pinocchio: Father, whatcha crying for?
Geppetto: Because... you're dead, Pinocchio.
Pinocchio: No. No, I'm not.
Geppetto: Yes. Yes, you are. Now, lie down...
- One particularly glaring example appears early in the film-during the scene where Pinocchio sets his finger on fire, watch Geppetto's head - his sleeping cap disappears several times throughout the scene! The DVD commentary even points this out and how easy it is to miss it the first time.
- In the frames just before Geppetto tells Pinocchio to "Say hello to Figaro", Pinocchio only has his pupils.
- On a poster, Pinocchio has his little wooden head but a human body!
- Oh, Crap!: Pinocchio and Jiminy when Pinocchio is trapped in the cage and they realise the Blue Fairy is coming and will know Pinocchio wasn't at school like he should have been.
Talking Donkey: Please! Please! I don't wanna be a donkey. Let me out of here!
- Jiminy Cricket's epiphany of what happens to the boys on Pleasure Island.
Coachman: QUIET! (cracks his whip) You boys have had your fun, now pay for it!
Jiminy Cricket: "Boys"?! So that's wha... PINOCCHIO! (races back to the billiard hall)
- Lampwick when he realizes he's turning into a donkey. He starts getting very worried when he notices the transformations, and then, when he sees himself in the mirror, he comes unglued in a way that wouldn't be out of place in a horror movie...
- The school of fish when Monstro opens his eye right in front of them (actually, all the fish react like this whenever Monstro's name is even mentioned).
- Pinocchio when he first sees Monstro swimming at him.
- Geppetto when he realises Pinocchio's plan of making Monstro sneeze will infuriate Monstro. And it does, because it involves making a fire inside him.
- Geppetto and Pinocchio when Monstro's tail is about to come down on top of them.
- One-Word Title: Also a Protagonist Title.
- Only in It for the Money: Honest John and Gideon persuading Pinocchio to go to Pleasure Island is a combination of this and fear for what would happen if they refused the Coachman, given how freaked out they are when the Coachman first mentions the place.
- Or My Name Isn't...: Honest John tells Gideon the plan to sell Pinocchio to Stromboli in this way:Honest John: If we play our cards right, we'll be on Easy Street, or my name isn't Honest John.
- Our Fairies Are Different: The Blue Fairy.
- Outliving One's Offspring: Geppetto wakes up on the beach to find his son drowned saving his life. Fortunately subverted because Pinocchio's selfless sacrifice allows him to become a real boy.
- Parasol Parachute: Jiminy's umbrella at times.
- Partial Transformation: Pinocchio's transformation into a jackass merely amounts to ears, a tail, and occasional braying. An early comic book adaptation has one of the Coachman's henchmen, just barely unable to catch Pinocchio before he escapes, comment that he won't fully change into a donkey unless he stays on the island.
- Pauper Patches: Jiminy starts dressed this way before the Blue Fairy declares him Pinocchio's conscience and gives him a clothing upgrade.
- Pinocchio Nose: Codifier.
- Pinocchio Syndrome: Trope Namer and Trope Codifier.
- Playing with Fire: In the reprise version of Little Wooden Head.
- Pleasure Island: Trope Namer.
- Precision F-Strike: The usage of the word "jackass", spoken by the Coachman ("Give a bad boy enough rope and he'll soon make a jackass of himself..."), by Jiminy ("Go on, laugh! Make a jackass out of yourself!"), and by Lampwick ("What's [Jiminy] think I look like? A jackass?").
- Protagonist Title: Pinocchio is the protagonist of this story.
- Punny Name: Jiminy Cricket (a Gosh Dang It to Heck! version of "Jesus Christ"), "Honest" John Worthington Foulfellow, Monstro, and even Stromboli (after a volcano near Sicily).
- Red Is Heroic: Inverted with the Coachman, who wears a red coat but is the most evil character in the film.
- Played straight with Pinocchio, who wears red pants and has a red feather in his hat.
- Rhetorical Question Blunder: "What do I look like, a jackass?"Pinocchio: (amused) You sure do! HAHAHAHA-HAW-HEE-HAAAAW!
- Ribcage Stomach: The inside of Monstro.
- Rule of Three: The film's Big Bad Ensemble features three baddies: Stromboli, the Coachman, and Monstro. When one disappears, another takes their place.
- Say My Name: ""Boys"?! So that's wha... PINOCCHIO!"
- Scare 'em Straight: The children do naughty things and are doomed for it for the rest of their lives.
- Scenery Porn: Most notably the inside of Geppetto's shop with all those fabulous clocks and music boxes. Remember, this was when everything was done by hand.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Jiminy is more than a little upset to see Pinocchio enjoying himself on Pleasure Island. It doesn't help that Lampwick laughs at him.Jiminy: Go on, laugh, make a jackass outta yourself! I'm through! This is the end! (storms off)
Pinocchio: But Jiminy, Lampwick says a guy only lives once!
Jiminy: Lampwick, hmph!
- However, Jiminy changes his mind later on when he sees that the donkeys used to be boys, and goes back for Pinocchio even after he started growing a donkey's tail and ears.
- Seahorse Steed: Jiminy Cricket rides what appears to be a sea donkey.
- Second Face Smoke: Done by Lampwick to Jiminy Cricket.
- Serendipitous Symphony: The cuckoo clocks and the music boxes.
- "Setting Off" Song: "Hi-Diddle-Dee-Dee".
- Shapeshifting Excludes Clothing: Where bad boys turn into donkeys after misbehaving on Pleasure Island. We see this happen to Lampwick, as animal instincts replace his human reason, and a combination of the shape change itself, and desperate braying and bucking casts all of his clothes off.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Jiminy, Figaro and Cleo are separated from Pinocchio and Geppetto when Monstro's tail destroys their raft during the movie's climax only to safely wash up on shore once it's over.
- Shout-Out: The exterior of the pool hall on Pleasure Island is a giant eight-ball and cue stick, a nod to the Trylon and Perisphere of the 1939 New York World's Fair.
- It's a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment, but the barker for "Da Roughhouse" is, fittingly, channeling Jack Mercer's Popeye.
- Sidekick Song: "Give a Little Whistle".
- Significant Monogram: Jiminy Cricket.
- Skewed Priorities: When Jiminy goes to tell Gepetto about Pinocchio joining the theatre, he stops himself, saying that would be "snitching". This is skewed because telling a child's parent that their child has run off to the theatre on his own is obviously not a bad thing, and in the child's best interest.
- Super Not-Drowning Skills: Jiminy has no trouble breathing underwater. There are even air bubbles coming out of his mouth, somehow. This may be justified for Pinocchio, being made of wood, but then it is subverted for him anyway, as he apparently drowns a little later.
- The Silent Bob: Gideon.
- Sissy Villain: Honest John, probably due to his Large Ham persona and the fact that he just can't stop waving his hands around.
- Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism: Cleo, Monstro, and Figaro are real animals. Jiminy, Honest John and Gideon are anthropomorphic animals.
- The Smurfette Principle: Not counting Cleo the goldfish, the Blue Fairy is the only female character in the movie.
- Space Whale Aesop: Don't do bad things, or you'll eventually turn into a donkey.
- The Speechless: Honest John's henchman, Gideon.
- Spit Take: As Stromboli takes a drink of wine, this is his initial response to Pinocchio announcing that he is going home to Geppetto.
- Stealth Pun: Geppetto wishes for Pinocchio, a marionette, to be a real boy. The Blue Fairy grants him his wish, but adds some requirements that Pinocchio has to meet to become fully real. In other words, the wish comes with strings attached.
- Supernatural Aid: The Blue Fairy.
- Super-Persistent Predator: Monstro. Once he gets pissed off enough he will stop at nothing to devour or destroy whatever made him angry.
- Surprise Creepy: Starts off cute and lighthearted, then we get to Pleasure Island...
- Take That!:
- "What does an actor want with a conscience anyway?"
- Some have interpreted the way Pleasure Island is depicted as reflecting Walt's view on what Amusement Parks were like at the time.
- Tempting Fate: After Jiminy Cricket storms out giving up trying to set Pinocchio straight after he finds him making a fool of himself with Lampwick, moments later, Lampwick scoffs "To hear that beetle talk, you'd think something was gonna happen to us!" Don't even ask what takes place right after he says that.
- Pushed even further when he says "What do I look like, a jackass?"Pinocchio: (amused) You sure do!
- Pushed even further when he says "What do I look like, a jackass?"
- That Russian Squat Dance: Done by Russian puppets.
- "The Villain Sucks" Song: The unused song "Monstro the Whale," which depicts him as the "undersea public enemy."
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Sandwich: On Pleasure Island, when Lampwick and Pinocchio are outside the rough house tent, Lampwick throws a turkey away after taking just one bite. Likewise, in the same scene, Pinocchio has an ice cream in one hand and a pie in the other. He takes one bite out of the pie (he doesn't touch the ice cream) and then throws both the pie and ice cream away when he enters the rough house with Lampwick. As everything was free, they most likely thought they'd be able to get more food later.
- Averted with Pinocchio's apple. Honest John eats it and gives the core back to Pinocchio.
- This Is Gonna Suck: When Geppetto hears Pinocchio's plan to escape Monstro by making him sneeze, he has an understated version of this reaction:Geppetto: "Oh, that will make him mad..."
- Those Two Bad Guys: Honest John and Gideon.
- Through a Face Full of Fur: Pinocchio (who is still made of wood at this point) turns red when inhaling too much while smoking a cigar, then green when he accidentally swallows the smoke. Also, the green Jiminy Cricket blushes red when the beautiful Blue Fairy asks him to be Pinocchio's conscience.
- Too Dumb to Live: Pinocchio is much too easily swayed by Honest John and Gideon yet again after they convinced him to go to Stromboli; and the second time around, they lure him into something much worse, albeit with a little more resistance on Pinocchio's part.
- All of the naughty boys who were convinced to go to Pleasure Island; the Coachman even lampshades this as he knows the bad ones will be easy to lure with the promise of beer, sweets, games, and no authority whatsoever. Further lampshaded once they've all turned into donkeys as the talking ones beg to be freed, with the Coachman reminding them of their foolishness.
- Toxic Friend Influence: Lampwick.
- Transformation Trauma: The donkey scene.
- Tuft of Head Fur: Figaro the kitten has a tuft of fur on the back of his head.
- Underside Ride: Jiminy Cricket hitches a ride on the coach that takes children to Pleasure Island.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Averted when seemingly all the fish within a mile follow behind Pinocchio and Jiminy while they search for Geppetto at the bottom of the sea. Played straight with Honest John and Gideon.
- Villain Song: "Hi-Diddle-Dee-Dee". It's cheerful, but it's sung by Honest John to convince Pinocchio to become an actor.
- Villainous Breakdown: Monstro during the climax in a rather terrifying way. Though seeing as two people just lit a huge fire inside him, you'd think it would be understandable that he'd be pissed, but no, all this act does is merely make him sneeze. When he realizes two people just escaped from his belly, he absolutely flips out. He gets more terrible and wrathful the more they dodge him and get closer to shore, so much so, he doesn't even care he's about to crash into a landmass.
- Visual Pun:
- When Pinocchio is on Pleasure Island, Jiminy Cricket is behind the eight ball. First figuratively, then literally.
- Before Jiminy storms out of the pool hall, he tells Lampwick, "Go on, laugh, make a jackass out of yourself!" He has no idea how right he is until he reaches the Coachman's boat...
- We All Live in America: The Italian or Tuscan context of the book is all but nonexistent here.
- Wham Line: "They never come back... AS BOYS!"
- What Happened to the Mouse?: What about that island full of polymorphed child slavery?!
- When the Clock Strikes Twelve: This is when the coach to Pleasure Island departs.
- White Gloves: Pinocchio has both white gloves and Four-Fingered Hands as a puppet. He loses the gloves when he becomes a real boy, as well as having a proper set of five fingers on each hand, implying that his "gloves" might actually have been wood painted white. All of the Funny Animals in the movie (Jiminy Cricket, Honest John, Gideon) also sport gloves, sometimes with holes in the fingers.
- You Can Turn Back: When Pinocchio goes out to find Geppetto after learning he had been swallowed by a whale, he gives Jiminy a chance to leave, offering his hand and saying goodbye. Jiminy seems surprised that he would even do that.Jiminy Cricket: "Goodbye"?! I may be live bait down there, but I'm with you!