Top 10 reasons Hercules is the best Disney film
But no, no, neither of these is the best Disney film, Hercules is, and if you don’t think so you’re a total chump. Here’s 10 reasons why you are that large a chump.
#10 – Meg’s Song – I Won’t Say I’m In Love
This is the best-for-film-list-equivalent of Bruce Springsteen opening a set with Thunder Road. You probably thought “Ok, he’ll ease us in, maybe by the 4th or 5th point I’ll start coming round to his way of thinking, but actually I’ll still much prefer The Lion King / The Gaslight Anthem. Not so anymore, because I Won’t Say I’m In Love is probably the greatest song of all time, second only to Thunder Road. This is the level Hercules is at.
#9 – Herc’s Song – Go The Distance
He’s done what? He’s followed up one banger with another! Can he? Is that even LEGAL? Well newsflash reader, yes it is legal and yes, guess what, I just did it. Go The Distance is the perfect Disney song – its chorus is huge, it has a blinding key change, it’s as aspirational as it is inspirational, and it goes alongside a pretty blinding montage (more on those later).
#8 – Bobcat Goldthwait is in it
Bobcat Goldthwait’s voice sounds like a broken accordion being dragged through a field of landmines by a man who ruddy loves stepping on landmines. It’s an oddity of nature, like those roads that make things go uphill or moonbows (Moonbows man, totally a thing). He automatically lifts any film he’s in to another level. On a related note, I feel this is as good a time as any to mention my idea for a crime-solving duo made up of Bobcat Goldthwait and Danny Trejo – imagine the chemistry between them. I don’t know how they’d solve crimes, gumption is my first guess, that and dumb luck.
#7 – The Muses
I bloody love a good narrator me. I think because it’s the part I used to always play in primary school Christmas plays, my teachers telling me that actually it’s the most important part because you explain the story, get the most lines and don’t have to dress like a clart. The Muses are cracking narrators, in that they narrate through Gospel music. Blood Brothers would be a better play if it took a similar tack.
#6 – Danny DeVito loves it
When asked what his favourite children’s film was in an interview, Danny DeVito gave two answers – one was Matilda, which he directed, starred in and narrated (rather well), the other was Hercules, which he stars in but, as previously mentioned, does not narrate, which I’m sure still irks him to this day. For a film to elicit such brash hubris from such a tiny man, it must be pretty damn good. Similarly, Danny DeVito’s favourite American comedy is It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia and his favourite person to follow on Twitter is @DannyDeVito – go figure.
#5 – Training Montages
If Team America taught us anything, it’s that everyone loves a montage, and also that Sean Penn is a colossal bellend (I knew that anyway, one time I saw him at Heathrow with Mick Fleetwood and he was acting all douchey – my Dad leant over and tapped Mick Fleetwood on the shoulder, true story). There’s some belting montages in this, taking us from brawny rough-around-the-edges Herc to superstar Herc all through the power of narrative song. Better than Rocky those bits. Miles better.
#4 – River of dead blokes
There aren’t many things I believe unequivocally, but one is this: children’s films, or at least, films that children will watch, should be bloody scary. The river of souls at the end of the film is properly dark, when you see Herc getting weaker and older as he swims to try and retrieve Meg, the cross-cutting between that and the fates pulling the strand of thread, the tension that gets built up before it’s relieved when Herc comes out all golden and indestructible, carrying Meg like he’s in The Notebook or something – seriously what a babe. (In this clip, try to ignore the insane 45-second introduction. We do not condone adulterating Disney with Linkin Park songs and flaming skulls.)
#3 – …
…I’ll level with you here, I pitched for 10 facts and I’ve come up short at 7. Does this diminish how awesome Hercules is? Could you have thought of 10 equally convincing facts for, say, Tangled or Oliver and Company? Putting aside the excellence of both of those films, no it doesn’t and no you couldn’t. That is to say, no you haven’t, and yes I have – sort your life out and go and watch Hercules, chumps.