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Western Animation / Romeo & Juliet: Sealed with a Kiss

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Romeo and Juliet...with sea lions.

The story follows, of course, Romeo and Juliet, two Star-Crossed Lovers who decide to marry in order to be together and free Juliet from an arranged marriage with an elephant seal. Of course, things don't go well.

Former Disney animator Phil Nibbelink created the entire film by drawing directly into Flash 4 on his Wacom tablet, over a period of 4 years.

This movie was distributed by Indican Pictures and released on October 2006, grossing a total of $463,002.

Reviewed here and also by Bobsheaux.

Provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Prince to Juliet. Prince thinks he's a total stud, but he's an overweight, grotesque elephant seal with bad breath and a cruel, selfish personality. It doesn't help that he's multiple times Juliet's size.
  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: Being a Lighter and Softer adaptation, Romeo and Juliet, as well as Mercutio, all survive in the ending.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Prince is considerably worse than all the characters he's made up of. Prince Escalus is a Reasonable Authority Figure whose antagonism comes from his frustration with Romeo and Juliet's Feuding Families, and his order that Romeo be banished was an act of mercy, since the alternative was executing him. While Paris' exact characterization depends on the production, he seems to genuinely care about Juliet, courts her in the time period's appropriate manner by asking her father for her hand, and only attacks Romeo because he thinks he's there to vandalize Juliet's grave. Even Tybalt, despite being the closest thing the play had to an antagonist, is more likeable than Prince, since he never tried to force anybody to marry him.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: Everyone is against Romeo and Juliet's love—even sea animals.
  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Prince, an elephant seal, is yellowish-green, while real elephant seals are gray or brown. The female elephant seal who becomes Prince's girlfriend at the end of the film is pink.
  • Animal Gender-Bender: The last-minute love interest for Prince is supposedly a female elephant seal, but its size and nose are those of a male.
  • Anthropomorphic Animal Adaptation
  • Artistic Licence – Biology: The female elephant seal at the end looks nothing like an actual female elephant seal.
    • All the seal characters are shown able to run around with both their front and hind flippers: something only eared seals such as sea lions can do. Elephant seals, as well as other earless seals, move instead by inchworming or flopping their way along.
    • Elephant seals, while carnivorous, do not eat other seals or sea lions.
    • Romeo and Juliet dance in the Titanic...which is over twelve thousand feet underwater, far deeper than any seal,note  or for that matter any mammal period can dive.note  Not to mention that they are shown to be able to breathe underwater despite being mammals.
  • Artistic License – Physics: Romeo and his friends attempt to disguise themselves as white seals by rolling themselves in snow. And it somehow works underwater.
  • Artistic License – Geography: Romeo and Juliet visiting the Titanic, which is located in the Atlantic Ocean, despite the main species featured in the film (sea lion, elephant seal, and sea otter) belonging to the Pacific Ocean.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Mercutio hurls various insulting jokes at the Prince, a gigantic and ferocious elephant seal, who eventually chases him over a cliff.
  • Canon Foreigner: Kissy the kissing fish is not directly based on any character from the original play.
  • Carnivore Confusion: The aforementioned Kissy, friend to the seals. Say, what's a seal's main source of food again?
  • Color-Coded Characters: The Montagues are colored brown, the Capulets are pure white, the Prince is greenish grey and Kissy is orange.
  • Composite Character: Prince is an amalgam of Juliet's cousin Tybalt, Prince Escalus, and Paris (one of the Prince's relatives who wanted to marry Juliet).
  • Creator Cameo: Not only does Phil Nibbelink voice the Prince, but Kissy is voiced by Nibbelink's daughter.
  • Damsel in Distress: Juliet at one point is bound and gagged by an octopus. It gets worse for her in the film's climax.
  • Disney Death: Romeo, Juliet, and Mercutio. But really, since this is a kiddie version, do we really need to spoiler-tag this?
  • Domestic-Only Cartoon: Phil Nibbelink animated the film himself.
  • Everybody Lives: Played straight. By the end of the film, nobody dies in the end unlike the Shakespearean play.
  • The Evil Prince: Admittedly, he's more stupid than evil, though he does show a tendency to try and eat those who anger him.
  • Evil Smells Bad: Played for Laughs. Prince has bad breath. It is sometimes depicted as a green gas, and it's one of the many things that makes him an Abhorrent Admirer.
  • Fat Bastard: Prince. Justified, since elephant seals are well-known for their bulk.
  • Get a Room!: Said by Friar Lawrence and later Mercutio when Romeo and Juliet start kissing passionately:
    Mercutio: Come on! Will youse two get a cave!
  • Improvised Weapon: Mercutio uses an octopus and a lobster as weapons during the opening brawl.
  • Interspecies Romance: The Montagues are California sea lions, the Capulets Stellar sea lions. The two belong to different genera.
  • Lighter and Softer: Compared with William Shakespeare's original play. See Spared by the Adaptation below.
  • Love at First Sight: Romeo and Juliet, of course. Also the Prince and his mate at the end.
  • Misplaced Wildlife: The movie takes place in the North Atlantic, as can be seen by characters visiting the wreck of the RMS Titanic; but sea lions, elephant seals, and sea otters do not live there.
  • Monstrous Seal: Prince is a gigantic elephant seal who terrorizes the other sea lions on the beach, and even threatens to eat Romeo at one point.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • The scene of Romeo seeing Julia dead, surrounded by her mourning family is followed by the comical chase scene between the Friar and Sharky, in which the Friar sings a Gratuitous Rap number.
    • Mercutio arrives at the wedding-turned-tragedy surfing a wave and cracking jokes despite everyone looking sad before finally seeing Romeo and Juliet lying lifeless and commenting: "Uuuuh, this party looks DEAD!"
  • "Oh, Crap!" Smile: Both Mercutio and Benvolio do this upon seeing three more Capulet seals with the seal that was originally chasing Benvolio.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Zig-zagged. Romeo is a lot darker than Juliet, but that's due to them being from different families. Juliet's male relatives are just as light as her.
  • Pietà Plagiarism: When the Friar shows up to the wedding carrying the seemingly dead Juliet.
  • Punny Name: Kissy, the kissing fish.
    • Punny Title, too: Sealed With A Kiss.
  • Recycled In Space: Romeo and Juliet WITH SEA LIONS!
  • Related in the Adaptation: Both played straight and inverted. Mercutio was related to the prince in the original play, but he isn't here. On the other hand, he also becomes a Montague in this adaptation.
  • Reused Character Design: Bobsheaux pointed out that Friar Lawrence the otter looks nearly identical to Merlin in squirrel form.
    Bobsheaux: Come on, movie, your character designs may have been a little creepy, but you shouldn't have to rip Disney off!
  • Sapient Eat Sapient: Prince has no qualms about eating seals - the same species he's about to marry.
  • Shipper on Deck: Kissy thinks Romeo and Juliet are cute together and is one of the few characters who support the relationship. At the end of the movie, he finds a better love interest for Prince and thinks they're also cute together, despite both having bad breath.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Kissy shows the Friar his way to safety from Sharky after telling him "Come with me if you want to live!"
    • Practically half the things Mercutio says are lines from other Shakespeare works.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Contrary to the classic story, none of the characters die.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Averted. Despite being explicitly described as such early in the film, this adaptation has Romeo and Juliet be together in the end.
  • Sweet Seal: Romeo and Juliet are reimagined in this film as adorable young sea lions.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Prince gets with a female elephant seal at the end of the movie. You can tell she’s a female elephant seal because she has eyelashes, lipstick, a bustline, and a pink coloration.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: Benvolio mutters "We're gonna die" when Mercutio reveals his plan to crash the Capulet's party.
  • Threatening Shark: The Shark Fin of Doom-shaped Shark Island is called like this because its waters are haunted by a large hungry shark named Sharky, who has an extended chase scene with the Friar.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Both trailers give away the ending... but then again, it shouldn't be a surprise, should it?
  • Tying Up Romantic Loose Ends: After Romeo and Juliet's love is accepted, Prince quickly marries another elephant seal.
  • Villain Song: Prince has "Ooh, Baby, Baby," about how attractive he thinks he is.
  • We Will Not Use Stage Makeup In The Future: Averted. Romeo, Mercutio, and Benvolio sneak into a Capulet party by covering themselves in white sand.
  • What's an X Like You Doing in a Y Like This?: Mercutio tries this on a Capulet... and quickly sees she has bad teeth.