The Collection (4/5)
When Disney announced this collection I mistakenly thought this was going to be the beginning of the Blu-ray edition of the Walt Disney Treasures collections from over a decade ago that I sadly missed out on. Those collections put together stellar editions of classic Disney shorts, and are probably some of my most desired releases in HD.
The Walt Disney Animation Short Films Collection is not that release. It is rather a compilation of 12 short films that Disney has made over the last 15 or so years, I expected most of these to be theatrical shorts that premiered before their more recent fare, but again I was wrong, and in this case I enjoyed my wrongness. The collection did have a few of those recent theatrical shorts like Frozen Forever, Feast, and so on. It also collected films that played on TV, and films that were not strictly played in front of Disney Animated Classics creating a collection of films that were new to me, and therefore quite exciting.
The 12 films in the collection aren't all masterpieces, but they offer a wonderful glimpse at what the team at Disney's animation department can do when they are free from the constraints of animating a feature film costing the studio millions upon millions of dollars. The collection includes beautifully dramatic fair like an adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's Little Matchstick Girl that is equal parts gorgeous and devastating. The Tick Tock Tale that blends silly, simple, and elegant animation that creates something sweet and a little bit sad. There are a number of sequel shorts included in the set as well such as Prep & Landing: Operating Secret Santa, Tangled Ever After, and Frozen Forever that give a glimpse back into lives of recent favorite Disney characters without the time commitment of a feature film. None of these are particularly deep, and usually built around a humorous concept, but they work as short treats for fans who are waiting for proper sequels.
The Blu-ray looks fantastic all the way across the board. Each film is stylistically different from one another, but they all have excellent color and detail throughout. The audio is presented with a series of DTS-HD MA 5.1 tracks that sound absolutely fantastic. Dialogue comes through nice, and clearly, while the film's various scores are well balanced and audible.
Each film contains an introduction by the filmmakers behind the short. We also get a 7 minute short roundtable that works as a behind the scenes.
A fantastic collection by Disney putting together their recent short films. The A/V is fantastic, though the extras are slim. RECOMMENDED.