Horton Hears a Who!
Cosmology, apocalypse, McCarthyism: All found their way into Theodor Geisel’s 1954 kiddie classic about a friendly elephant who picks up tiny voices emanating from the tip of a purple puff. Pardon me—it’s been years—but I’d forgotten about the quotes from Apocalypse Now (“I love the smell of bananas in the morning,” squeals Horton), the soliciting of friends on WhoSpace or the book’s climactic REO Speedwagon sing-along ending. Yes, Horton Hears a Who! has been dragged into the modern age, and not without damage. Still, here is a film in which computer animation, drawing attention to every wondrous drop of dew, makes total sense. Enough of the book’s egalitarian spirit survives, no matter how small or Happy Meal–ified. The DVD includes a directors’ commentary and an Ice Age short, and the two-disc set ($34.98) includes deleted scenes, several making-of featurettes, a game and some other nonsense.