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Disney Allusions

AP Literature Allusions Project.
by

Caryn Roberts

on 7 March 2014

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Transcript of Disney Allusions

By: Caryn Roberts
The Little Mermaid
The Disney movie "The Little Mermaid" alludes to the mythological creatures who would sing and lure men at sea so they forget their mission and crash into rocks and die. However, in the movie, the mermaids are portrayed as kind loving creatures who swim under the sea. Also, Ariel's father, King Trident, alludes to the Greek god, Poseidon, who is god of the sea, earthquakes, and horses.
Hercules
The movie "Hercules" alludes to the Greek hero Hercules who was renowned for his courage and strength and best known for his 12 labors, which included killing or capturing legendary creatures. In the Disney version, Hercules must prove to his father Zeus that he has what it takes to be a god, which includes him defeating many legendary creatures that Hades sends do kill him. This movie also alludes to many other Greek gods and characters.
The Lion King
"The Lion King" alludes to Shakespeare's play "Hamlet". They are both about a son who's father is the king, and his father is betrayed by his own brother and killed. The son learns the truth when his father's spirit comes and speaks to him, he then decides to avenge his father's death, which leads to his uncle's demise.
Pocahontas
The Disney movie "Pocahontas" alludes to Shakespeare's "The Tempest" where Captain John Smith plays the role of the shipwrecked sailor, who in the movie is captured rather than shipwrecked. Pocahontas' and Smith's love mirrors the love story that takes place in "The Tempest" between Miranda and Ferdinand.
Alice in Wonderland
The movie "Alice in Wonderland" alludes to the book by author Charles Lutwigde Dogdson "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland". It is about a girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar creatures. The Disney version is still quite different from the original story. There is no unbirthday in the book, Tweedledee, Tweedledum, and the talking flowers never appear, and Alice eats the cakes in the White Rabbit's house, who then tries to burn down his house with her still inside.
Aladdin
The Disney movie "Aladdin" alludes to the Middle Eastern story collection "One Thousand and One Nights (The Arabian Nights)". In the Disney version several characters are renamed or changed (for example the Sorcerer and the Sultan's vizier become the same person, while the Princess becomes "Jasmine"), have new motivations for their actions (the Lamp Genie now desires freedom) or are replaced (there is no Ring Genie, but a magic carpet fills his place in the plot). The setting is also moved from China to the fictional Arabian city of Agrabah.
Snow White
The Disney movie of "Snow White" alludes to the biblical story of Adam and Eve. In the biblical story, God has one strict rule for the two: not to eat fruit off of the Tree of Knowledge. Satan, in the form of a serpent, draws Eve in and convinces her to commit the first sin by eating the forbidden fruit. Eve convinces Adam to do the same. The two are condemned and exiled out of the Garden of Eden, where they must work to survive for the rest of their days. In the movie Snow White, Snow White is a innocent girl who lives in the forest. An evil witch, who can be seen as representing Satan, tricks her into eating an apple, referring the the forbidden fruit. The apple is poisonous, and after eating it Snow White falls into a deep sleep.
The Lion King (Again)
The movie also alludes to the story of Moses in the book of Exodus. Simba represents Moses. Simba was the prince of Africa until he was wrongly accused of causing his father, Mufas's death. The same thing happens to Moses when he killed a slave owner from Egypt. Both characters were exiled and grew to maturity until they encountered a figure who instructed them to go back to their homeland. Simba encountered his father and Moses encountered God in the form of a burning bush. Mufasa symbolizes God in The Lion King, because he lives in the heart of Simba the same way that God lives in the hearts of Moses and other christians. Mufasa died to save Simba just like Jesus eventually dies to save his people from their sins.
Disney Allusions
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