|Category||Animation/Family||Game - The Little Mermaid II Trivia
The Little Mermaid II DVD Story Book
Game - What Am I?
|Running Time||72:14 minutes|
|Start Up||Language Selection, then Menu|
Warner Home Video
Samuel E. Wright
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||No||English (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384
Danish (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384 Kb/s)
Norwegian (Dolby Digital 5.1, 384 Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.66:1|
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||1.66:1?||
English for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Coincidentally, the story picks up pretty much twelve years after The Little Mermaid and Ariel (Jodi Benson) and Eric (Rob Paulsen) are celebrating the twelfth birthday of their daughter Melody (Tara Charendoff). Now Ariel has been a little naughty and withheld from Melody the rather vital knowledge that she is descended from King Triton (Kenneth Mars) and therefore a mermaid. This was done to save her from the clutches of Morgana (Pat Carroll), the evil sister of the even more evil, but deceased, Ursula. However, Melody has an affinity for the sea and despite the efforts of her parents, escapes into that realm whenever she can. After discovering a pendant with her name on it whilst swimming, and not liking her mother's failure to explain certain things, she runs away to find the truth. Which runs her slap bang into Morgana, and thus runs her headlong into trouble with a capital T. Said trouble involves theft from Triton and the realization that she is something other that what she seems - and that Morgana is definitely not the pleasant person she seems.
A pretty banal story all up that really is just an excuse to trot out the delightful characters from the original film, plus a few new (and far less memorable) characters. Most of the original vocal cast is assembled here - I think Rob Paulsen as Eric is the only non-original voice from amongst the main characters. The songs are lacklustre and the feel here is very direct-to-video throughout.
Very much aimed at the younger audience, this really does have to be seen in that context. However, it is not a patch on The Little Mermaid, as is not unexpected in any sequel, and really there is nothing much here apart from variety to encourage a purchase of this rather than the original film.
A good transfer has been produced here, being quite sharp and quite detailed. Perhaps the only minor complaint here is the fact that some of the edges are perhaps not quite as sharp and as solid as they should be. Given that this is a direct-to-video effort and given the target audience, I again doubt too many will be complaining about it. The transfer is nice and clear and does not suffer from grain or low level noise at all.
The colours come up very well here, nice and bright and vibrant. There is nice tonal depth throughout, and the colours seem to be very consistently rendered. The one downer is that poor old Sebastian gives the mastering people hell, and he tends to oversaturate at times as well as suffering a little from what looks like colour bleed. That, however, would be the only real qualms about the colours, and even then they are quite minor issues.
Apart from some minor resolution loss on one pan shot, there did not appear to be any significant MPEG artefacts in the transfer. The only noticeable issue with film-to-video artefacts in the transfer is a mild shimmer that generally causes character lines to be slightly broken rather than solid black. There did not appear to be any film artefacts in the transfer.
This is a Dual Layered
DVD, and in the absence of noticing any layer change during the film itself,
I am presuming the film is mastered on one layer with the extras on the
The dialogue and vocals come up very well in the transfer and are easy to understand. There is of course the inherent problem of animation sync.
The music score comes from Danny Troob, whom I presume is a staff composer at Disney as I have not heard of him before. Let me assure you that nothing here is anywhere near the original The Little Mermaid in terms of quality. It is a very by-the-numbers effort that is totally in keeping with the direct-to-video status of the film.
What happened to the Disney tradition of no bass
channel on its animated DVDs, so as not to disturb the youngsters? This
is another Disney animated effort aimed at a younger audience that gets
some bass channel work, albeit not especially great. The rest of the soundtrack
is perfectly acceptable if somewhat lacking in great use of the surround
channels, both front and rear. The soundtrack is a fairly open effort,
even if the dialogue sounds just a little too forced in the overall mix.
|Surround Channel Use|
© Ian Morris (have
a laugh, check out the bio)
9th December 2000
|DVD||Pioneer DV-515; S-video output|
|Display||Sony Trinitron Wega 80cm. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in|
|Amplification||Yamaha RXV-795. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Energy Speakers: centre EXLC; left and right C-2; rears EXLR; and subwoofer ES-12XL|