At the Kids’ Table

Uncle Walt, like many a kindly relative, concealed some untoward secrets behind his benevolent smile and neat mustache. Yet his household name maintains its family-entertainment luster four decades after his death, 2004’s Home on the Range notwithstanding. Christmas with Walt Disney burnishes the titan’s myth with a wealth of vintage holiday-themed highlights from his mid-century movies and TV specials, augmented with winter-sports snippets from his secret stash of home movies. The fast-paced hour-long film, produced by longtime Disney animator and producer Don Hahn (The Lion King), features such smile-inducing sequences as “The Nutcracker Suite” from Fantasia and “Pluto’s Christmas Tree.” Musical interludes include Fred MacMurray and Greer Garson singing “It Won’t Be Long Till Christmas,” a little-seen (or heard) number cut from the 1967 release of The Happiest Millionaire. The keepers of the Disney flame envision Christmas with Walt Disney as an annual seasonal attraction, and to that end they’re counting on that mysterious ingredient essential to any new would-be tradition: your enthusiastic and even childlike participation.
Dec. 24-Jan. 4, 2009

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