Movie Review: Treasure Planet

Saw this back in January and held the review until we were closer to the DVD release date. Is it worth a rental or purchase? DVD comes out April 29th.

Treasure Planet

Cast & Crew

Directed by Ron Clements
and John Musker
Based on the novel “Treasure Island” by Robert Louis Stevenson
Writing Staff: Ron Clements,
John Musker, Ted
, Terry Rossio,
Rob Edwards, and
Ken Harsha

Brian Murray as
John Silver
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
as James “Jim” Hawkins
Emma Thompson as Captain
David Hyde Pierce
as Doctor Doppler
Martin Short as B.E.N.
Patrick McGoohan as
Billy Bones
Roscoe Lee Browne
as Mr. Arrow
Laurie Metcalf as Sarah
Michael Wincott as
Tony Jay as The Narrator

Full IMDB Listing

Preorder the DVD from or

Original Release Date

November 17, 2002

DVD Release Date

April 29, 2003


A futuristic twist on Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, Treasure Planet
follows restless teen Jim Hawkins on a fantastic journey across the universe
as cabin boy aboard a majestic space galleon. Befriended by the ship’s charismatic
cyborg cook, John Silver, Jim blossoms under his guidance and shows the makings
of a fine shipmate as he and the alien crew battle a supernova, a black hole,
and a ferocious space storm. But even greater dangers lie ahead when Jim discovers
that his trusted friend Silver is actually a scheming pirate with mutiny on
his mind.


Treasure Island is one of those great adolescent books that every boy should read. Action, adventure, and coming-of-age. Disney’s futuristic take deserves credit for a great idea, but it’s poorly executed. The film’s primary failure? Trying to be too many things. On one hand there’s a fun (and often tense) story targeted at teenage boys. On the other hand is Disney’s need to sell this to younger kids and merchandise the living hell out it. As such it wanders from kiddie flick to action-adventure and back. Just take a look at the number of writers credited for the film. If they’d stayed the course of the original storyline, they’d have been better off for it.

High Point

The Supernova storm. This is some very cool animation.

Low Point

The oh-so-happy ending. I didn’t need that much sap.

The Scores

Originality: Sure it’s old material, but at least their not ripping it off,
they acknowledge the source and give it a fresh spin. 4

Effects: Pretty stuff. Disney animation has just about got the kinks worked out of mixing
3D CG and hand drawn animation. John Silver’s animation is truly something groundbreaking.

Story: A little too easy to guess what would happen next. 3

Acting: The leads are a bit dry. As with all things Disney, the supporting
cast steal the show. 4

Emotional Response: I was frustrated because they can’t seem to make up their mind to make this a kid movie or a teen movie. As such, it skirts both genres and fails. 2

Production: Beautiful to look at. Great work from the concept art on up. 6

Overall: It’s fun, but it lacks the edge of the original material. 4

Total: 28 out of 42